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Braving the cold

Pastor Cerry & Co visit the UK!

At last, at the second overall attempt and months of hard work and much prayer four of our Filipino friends made it across to Gloucester in May!

In One Church we believe our mission work is a ‘two-way bridge’ –  building relationships that aren’t just about us going overseas but also give opportunities for our partners to visit us. Since 2010 we have sent 5 mission trips to the Philippines and built great relationships with Pastor Cerry and his church. So it was really special to host Pastor Cerry, his wife Sallie, son Annon and Daughter in Law, Laiza, in Gloucester and take our turn in hosting for a change! This was a big deal for them as none of them had ever set foot outside of the Philippines before.

Our aim was to share our way of ‘doing church’ with them, to help them think about their longer term vision, how we can partner with them and to have lots of fun along the way! We were able to include them in many of our ‘normal’ church activities – a big thank you to everyone who helped with this – Call to Prayer, Youth, Life Group leaders, Link, OC Gloucester and Podsmead, Iron men leaders. And especially to our senior pastor, Simon, who personally made the invite on last year’s trip to Philippines and invested many hours of his time during the 2 weeks to help them ‘dream big’.

So many people helped make the trip happen and I particularly want to thank Ernie & Rose Calzado, Hugh & Julie Dowling, Mark Lockett, Debbie Jorden and my wife Mandy and daughter Hannah who helped to plan the itinerary and support the fantastic 2 weeks we had. Also to everyone they met in the activities mentioned above – you were all fabulously welcoming and they were truly overwhelmed with your love and interest in them! Finally, to the ‘fabulous Filipinos’ in and around Gloucester who made them feel truly at home.

They had a great time, we shared some great moments and we have an exciting time ahead – watch this space for more trips to the Philippines in 2017 and beyond!

Please pray for them all as they keep working for God’s glory in Talim Island

Here are a few photos from their 2 weeks………

Paul Cresswell, Philippines Mission lead