Dr. Sam Cariaga listens to patients on the island of Leyte in the Philippines. Cariaga and his brother, Salvador, recently treated more than 150 people on Leyte, where a Feb. 17 mudslide destroyed the village of Guinsaugon. They signed up eight teenagers orphaned by the disaster to study at Sunrise Christian College, a church-supported school in Butuan City. The teens will receive free housing, meals, tuition and an allowance. As a result of church-sponsored medical missions to Leyte and the scholarships, a new congregation was launched recently in the town of St. Bernard on Leyte, Salvador Cariaga said.
Homemade pizza and close friendships are two benefits of a small-group ministry headed by missionaries Jared and Karina Berryman. The couple took over the small-group meetings from vocational missionaries Ed and Carolyn Hance, who returned to the United States earlier this year. Karina Berryman, who cooks the pizza, said the ministry allows them to befriend agnostics and non-believers who are hesitant to attend church.
“In this country, whose main religion seems to be soccer, … people do not trust in the church as the body of Christ, but they still believe in relationships,” she said.
Thirty women from churches in the Belem area attended an April 20-22 retreat, said missionary David Bayless. They shared songs and craft ideas for Vacation Bible Schools and studied personal evangelism. Church member Terezinha Rodrigues spoke on humility and self-control. Other speakers also delivered lectures on the theme “Fruits of the Spirit.”
“It enabled ladies from many churches … to get to know each other better and have closer fellowship,” Bayless said.
About 200 church members from countries including Germany, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, United Kingdom and United States participated in a lectureship on “The Supremacy of Christianity and the Historical Jesus” in Hamburg April 14-16, said one of the presenters, Lawrence Kamdamwala, a church member from Cambridge, England.
The Hildesheim church is “in the middle of our own version of Home Improvement — our church home, that is,” said missionary Kyle Bratcher. Professional builders recently knocked down the wall between the church’s meeting room and the apartment next door, doubling the congregation’s space, Bratcher said. Church members and volunteers are painting, drilling and paneling the new worship area.
The Red Bridge Church of Christ, Kansas City, Mo., sponsors Bratcher and his wife, Susan.
Seven girls and two boys were named to the first honor roll at Sonrise Christian School for having the highest grades in their classes, said principal Joseph Dzamesi. The church-supported school has 135 students, 80 of whom live on campus. In response to this record number of boarders, the school recently appointed eight prefects, student officers who assist the school’s administration.
“The young men and women are all very good and intelligent,” Dzamesi said, “and they have made our second term run a lot smoother.”
More than 100 children “flowed out of the jungle to hear about Jesus,” as mission teams taught Bible classes recently, said Mark Young, of the Little Hands, Big Hearts ministry. The teams, from Merrimack, N.H., Tigard, Ore., and Abilene Christian University, also worked in construction projects for Trujillo churches and their members.
The ministry serves 28 children through its programs, including a preschool, character-building classes, vocational training and house construction.
Marel and Angela Bados are the ministry’s new directors. Young and his wife, Brenda, will return to the United States in July to work in development.
A lack of Christ, communication and companionship are impacting families around the globe, Lovell Hayes told the Jamaica Gleaner. The minister for the East Jackson Church of Christ, Jackson, Tenn., spoke about building successful marriages and families at the 11th Family Workshop at the Mona Church of Christ May 7-11. Hayes is a therapist for Agape Child and Family Services in Jackson.
About 300 church members from seven congregations attended a joint service recently in the building of the Cuauhtemoc congregation, said missionary Billy Moore. One man was baptized and now is a member of a small-group ministry, Moore said. The North Heights Church of Christ, Batesville, Ark., sponsors Moore and his wife, Belinda.
Anji Tigga, who moved to this West African capital in 2002, reported seven baptisms recently. He asked that church members “continue to pray for us and assist us with materials suitable for the work in this predominantly Islamic country.” The Bauchi Ring Road Church of Christ, Jos, Nigeria, oversees the work.
The South School of Preaching is training 38 students, said Des Lister, elder of the Queen Mary Avenue church in Durban. The Durban elders took over the former Natal School of Preaching three years ago at the request of the Garden Ridge Church of Christ in Lewisville, Texas, Lister said. The elders wrote a new constitution and centralized the school, formerly on campuses scattered across the country. They purchased a dormitory that can house up to 60 students.
“The aim of the school is to train black preachers to go out into the rural areas of South Africa with the gospel — and in many areas they are doing an excellent work,” Lister said.
June 1, 2006