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Vol. 10 No. 2
March/April 2006

A. Doors of Opportunity
B. Mission Challenges
C. Abundant Blessings
D. In Context
E. Love in Action
F. Global Prayer Focus


 
MISSIONS!
WHY GIVE? WHY SHARE?
Dr. Alton A. Gould
Chairman Emeritus
     So often we hear, "Why give to missions? They have their own religion!" Or "the money does not go where it is supposed to. Too much is used for administration or for executive 'tourist' travel". Granted! I have to agree - peoples do have their own religion; at times money may not go where intended, or greater emphasis goes to admin and travel. BUT from experience, I can say "missions do pay." Peoples with their own religion are being reached with the Gospel. The call to GIVE, GO, TELL still echoes from the Cross where Christ GAVE to save and reach all peoples. You may ask why give to missions? Why support ECF Ministries abroad? Mother Teresa expressed it thus:- "Let us not be satisfied with just giving money. Money is not enough; money can be got, but they need your hearts to love them." So spread your love everywhere you go. This is missions and giving. This is ECF International. But still you may ask - "WHY SHOULD I GIVE?"

    Giving and Sharing will help change your life! It will change your values! In this affluent age, so many think only of self, family, and comforts to be enjoyed. Giving and sharing with others is an opportunity to invest in building His Kingdom by investing in lives and families who will live forever eternally... lost or saved. So giving and sharing in missions will change your values.

    Giving and Sharing will expand your world! One who gives to missions becomes deeply interested in the lives of peoples who are lost without Christ. Interests expand to encompass the ministries of ECF and the peoples in the countries to be reached. Our world begins to shrink! We realize there are people who need the Lord. Giving and sharing will broaden your horizons!

    Giving and Sharing will not only challenge you but your enthusiasm will excite others. God is using the example of many who support our ministries to fuel the desires in the hearts of young people, students, children, and the elderly. This has been experienced in the lives of Dr. & Mrs. Szeto as they have witnessed their own children and family becoming involved in overseas ministries which has made an impact on the lives of many of their peers. I have seen it in our own family as two of our Grandchildren have been involved in mission ministries this past summer. Giving and sharing will impact the next generation.

    Giving and Sharing brings joy and pleasure. It is exciting to walk into a bank or business in North America and have the cashier or clerk call you by name or to work with a nurse who looks familiar and, upon inquiry to learn that you are being served by or working with a former sponsored child who was supported and raised in an orphanage or home in the Orient. What joy knowing that giving to missions does pay rich dividends in lives.

    Violet, a retired school teacher, found new purpose in life when she read of the possibility and privilege of the sponsorship program. Early in life she had felt a call to be involved in missions but instead had found fulfillment in teaching. Retired, she felt the "tug-of-missions." Because of age and ill health, she knew such was impossibility but learned there was a way to be personally involved by supporting a student. Eric, an Asian young man, feeling the call of God and desiring to enroll in seminary, was introduced, resulting in a contact and support. From this initial contact until her death several years later there was a lasting bond between the Asian youth and the North American retiree bringing great joy and pleasure into the life of an elderly woman. They only met once, but the bond was strong because of God's love shared.

    Through mission giving, values change, and horizons widen. One finds freedom to "let go" the comforts of this life with a thrill in having a small part in sowing seeds of life that will last for eternity - forever! This is why we give...why we share.



 
NEW MEMBERS AT ECF GRACE CHAPEL, MACAU
    On February 26th, two believers were baptized by Dr. Paul Szeto at ECF Grace Chapel, Macau. Dr. Harold Lane preached at the Sunday Morning worship and Dr. Nathan Yeh provided special music. Many family members and guests came to witness the occasion.
    More people from different age groups and walks of life join in the church activities. The church membership is growing steadily in spiritual maturity.


THE 10th ANNIVERSARY OF ECF CHILDREN'S CENTER IN THE PHILIPPINES
     Dr. Paul Szeto, Dr. & Mrs. Harold Lane and Dr. Nathan Yeh visited ECF Children's Center in the Philippines for three days from February 23rd to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of ECF's Children's ministry in that country. The ECF team met with the sponsored children and their parents for fellowship. The children expressed their gratitude by presenting cards they had created with personal notes of thanks. That same day, a livelihood seminar in income- generating through making coconut products was offered to parents of the sponsored children.
     On February 25th, the Anniversary Celebration took place with its theme taken from Lamentations 3:23, "Great is Thy Faithfulness". Dr. Paul Szeto's 25th anniversary in serving the ministry was also commemorated. Dr. & Mrs. Harold Lane delivered the opening greetings. Eumie Nicolas, a sponsored child, sang praises. Dr. Nathan Yeh presented a Filipino song while the children performed with singing and dancing.
     Dr. Paul Szeto delivered the message. The celebration was attended by many distinguished guests including the Mayor of Bocaue, Mr. Serafin Dela Cruz.


OFFICIAL VISIT OF MR. HAU-WAH HO, CEO OF MACAU SAR, CHINA TO ECF MACAU ORPHANAGE
     Mr. Hau-Wah Ho, CEO of Macau SAR, China visited the ECF Macau Fellowship Orphanage on February 22nd. This was his first visit to the children's home. Mr. Ho spent time visiting with children and staff. He delivered words of encouragement to challenge the children to become good citizens. The children presented handmade gifts, wrote poems and drew pictures for Mr. Ho.


ECF & APU Team Visited Shanghai, Nanjing and Beijing
     Dr. Szeto, President of ECF and a member of the Board of Trustees at Azusa Pacific University led a team of ten members to China this Spring. They visited the new Headquarters of China Christian Council in Shanghai and was hosted by Dr. Cao, the president of CCC with a luncheon at the Peace Hotel. Mary Grams, Director of International Student Services conducted several seminars on recruitment and met with APU alumni. Dr. Duane Funderburk, Dean of School of Music and Prof. Alex Russell presented a concert and conducted exchange with local musicians.
     They also presented special music at the newly dedicated Gospel Church in Pu Dong where Dr. Michael Whyte. provost of APU brought greetings.
     While in Nanjing, Dr. David Wright, Dean of Haggard School of Theology gave a moving message for the morning chapel. Mrs. Diane Wilson, donated 1,500 books from her late husband's (Dr. Gerald Wilson) library to Nanjing Union Theological Seminary. The last stop for the team was Beijing. Dr. Szeto presented to Mr. Ye, Director General of SARA, the latest copy of a DVD on a TV series "Love Never Ends" which features the churches in China. Mr. Ye hosted a special luncheon for the American delegation.



 
GOSPEL CANTONESE OPERA MISSION - A GREAT SUCCESS
     The mission team covered the same cities they traveled to last year and found a larger crowd at all four cities in Macau, Seihui, Kaiping and Hong Kong. Over 60% of the audience was first timers to attend a church function. They came with hearts open to the Good News.
     The Mission Team of 2006 has six members; John Ho (leader), Eddie Chan (co-leader), Kenneth Chan, Susanna Lam, Lisa Pang and Annie Ho. Their first stop was at ECF Grace Chapel in Macau. Staff and children from ECF orphanage were among many from the general public to attend the Gospel meeting. The reception was positive and all participated in singing the Gospel operatic songs in joyful spirit.
     The team left Macau early the next morning and arrived at Seihui Christian Church after four hours driving non-stop. They were warmly welcomed by minister Ho and church leaders. Many prayer meetings and visitations in the city and suburb were being conducted before the team's arrival. God answered prayers and brought in about 60 factory workers and high school students to the meeting. Many skipped dinner in order to make it on time.
     The third stop was in Kaiping. On the afternoon of the rally, posters of the meeting with photos of talents in full costume and make-up were erected in the front yard of the church with Gospel operatic music being broadcast toward open areas along the river facing the church. That evening's rally was attended by many young adults. Some have traveled over one hundred miles to come to the gathering. Praise the Lord for drawing new faces to His church.
     The team held its last evangelistic meeting at a large senior citizen's home with a six story building in Hong Kong. The auditorium was packed. Those who suffered from immobility watched on wide-screen T.V. on their respective floors with visiting relatives and friends. The team was able to reach about 100 viewers at once. ECF Macau Orphanage's retired superintendent, Mrs. Chi-Ying Wong, was among the residents. Praise God for her good health and spirit in witnessing for Christ at this senior home.



 
R.S. Carlson




     This issue's "In Context" focuses on a few facts about the Philippines, one of the fields in which ECF supports evangelistic and social service work.

     A Pacific nation of more than 7,100 islands, the Philippines lies across the South China Sea, east of Viet Nam, south of Taiwan, and north of the neighboring island nation of Indonesia. With a tropical rainforest climate, the Philippines is often subject to monsoons.

     In ancient times, the Aeta people lived in the Philippines region, and Malayan peoples moved into the islands roughly three centuries before the birth of Christ. In the tenth century AD, Islam spread from Indonesia into the southern Philippines, and it remains a major religion on Mindanao and adjacent islands. Spanish conquest began with Magellan in 1521. During more than 350 years of Spanish control, Roman Catholic faith spread widely in the Philippines. Currently, 80% of the populace is identified as Catholic, 5 % as Islamic, and about 10% are Protestant Christians.

     Following the Spanish American War in 1898, the US took control of the Philippines, and though hopes for independence surged thereafter, the US deployed 125,000 troops to contend with resistance groups for several decades. With World War II, the US government relied on Philippine resistance forces to help oppose the Imperial Japanese forces and committed to independence for the post-war Philippines.

     Official languages are Filipino and English. The Filipino is based on Tagalog, one of eight major dialects spoken in the islands, along with numerous other minority languages.

     The year 2000 census listed the population as over 76 million, and estimates for 2006 project the population is currently about 89 million. With underemployment for educated workers a major problem at home, many thousands of Filipino expatriates work in Hong Kong, the Arabian Gulf States, the USA, and elsewhere in order to support their families.

     ECF sponsors Mrs. Ditas Leonardo in work with children and in cooperative programs for children and families with Pastor Rod Nicolas of Caingin Christian Baptist Church in Bocaue, Bulacan.

     Some Internet Resources for more information on the Philippines are: http://www.philippines.hvu.nl/index.html http://www.bulacan.gov.ph/citiesmunicipalities/BocaueProfile.htm http://www.gov.ph/





 

TOUCH A LIFE WITH GOD'S LOVE


     Make a difference in the life of a child in Macau, Philippines or India by becoming a Sponsor through the ECF Sponsorship Ministry. For as little as US$25.00 per child, you can provide warm beds, nutritious food, a good education, vocational and practical skills training as well spiritual guidance for each sponsored child.
     Becoming a sponsor is as easy as contacting the ECF International Headquarters and telling them of your desire to be a partner in this meaningful ministry. A photograph and personal information sheet of the child will be sent to you. Remember that there is no legal responsibility involved. You support your child by your love, prayers, and gifts.
     If you would like to be a partner and see lives transformed, then join the ECF International Sponsorship Ministry. Simply fill-out the bottom part of this form and send it to ECF International, 437 S. Garfield Ave. Monterey Park, CA 91754 USA Attention: Sponsorship Ministry.

I would like to sponsor a child from: _____ India _____ Macau _______ Philippines
(Please check all that apply)
Monthly US$25_______ Quarterly US$75_______ Yearly US$300 _______

Contact Information
Name _______________________________________________
Address _____________________________ City___________________
State__________ Zip__________ Country _________________________

For further information, please contact Mrs. Kate Reyes, Sponsorship Manager
ECF International Headquarters
437 S. Garfield Ave., Monterey Park, CA 91754
Also, visit our website at www.ecfinternational.org.





We are in urgent need of 25 new sponsors in 2006.
If you want to help a needy child, become a sponsor and touch a life with God's love.
Please contact Kate Reyes at the ECF Headquarters.


 
Please pray for Dr. Szeto and ECF Teams

1. March 11 Shanghai - APU Concert with Dr. Duane Funderburk & Prof. Alex Russell

2. March 13 Nanjing Union Theological Seminary - Book Presentation with Mrs. Diane Wilson

3. March 14 Beijing State Administration of Religious Affairs, meeting with Mr. Ye

4. March 17 Bangkok - ECF Bethel Bible Institute Board

5. March 18 Maesai - Bethel Bible Institute Graduation Ceremony.

6. March 24 Pasadena - Fuller Theological Seminary, Bible Exhibition Committee

7. April 9 Eagle Rock - Zion Chinese Baptist Church

8. April 27 Garden Grove - Crystal Cathedral - Bible Exhibition, Opening Ceremony

9. May 2 Garden Grove - Crystal Cathedral - Enjoy China Friendship Day, sponsored by ECF International

10. May 19 Atlanta - Second Ponce de Leon Baptist Church, Bible Exhibition

11. June 5 New York City - The Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Bible Exhibition

12. June 11 Eagle Rock - Zion Chinese Baptist Church

13. July 8-16 Gospel Meetings in Germany - Contact: Rev. Gerd Pauschert


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