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January 2017: Bicol, Philippines Coffeehouse Update

By Gani Kingking & Russell Board

The Bicol Coffeehouse Ministry moved to its new location in Balatan, another town within Bicol. It is situated in a coastal area of the province. This Coffeehouse also has new workers led by Pastors Mark Guiang, Esther Patnon, and Mers Balanay.

The ministry started with one cell group in the Duran family through Sister Letty Sales. Last summer, a missions initiative was conducted in Balatan by youth and young professionals in the area. This endeavor helped boost awareness and increase the number of cell groups in town. Then it was decided to open the Coffeehouse in Balatan. After meetings were held with the group headed by Pastor Isagani Kingking and the area was inspected, the Coffeehouse opened on June 1st, 2016. The first Sunday service in Balatan commenced on July 30th, with 30 people in attendance.

The Coffeehouse doubles as a computer shop, drawing in new faces who come for research and printing services. Four young men are now being discipled as a result of this ministry.

One of the youth who is a part of this Coffeehouse ministry has started inviting her classmates to attend fellowship events every Friday. It began with 15 youth and increased in number each week. Some of them have already joined Sunday services and inviting their friends, schoolmates and loved ones.

At the moment, regular Sunday attendance ranges from 30 to 40 people. These individuals are presently involved in weekly cell groups, kids’ Bible study, and youth cell groups. Another cell group has opened in order to serve a family of eight children.

Pastors Guiang, Patnon and Balanay are now preparing for the first youth events, to be held in February. This will be followed by a training session conducted during cell group meetings. The aim is to provide believers with the opportunity to gain a knowledge and intimacy with Jesus Christ. They will learn how to lead cell groups in order to start and develop ministries in their areas.

Will you pray for more workers for this ministry in order to help them establish this church? Pray for the provision of a sound system and musical instruments such as a bass guitar and drum set to be used for the services. Pray that they would have their own church building to continue and grow this ministry.

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