Endless Thanksgiving: MCGI to Celebrate 2nd Quarter International Thanksgiving to God from July 29-31

Apalit, Pampanga (July 19, 2016) — The Members Church of God International (MCGI) gears up for its quarterly International Thanksgiving to God (ITG) event on July 29 to 31, 2016, following overflowing wisdom and deeper understanding of new topics delivered to the congregation by the Church’s Overall Servants.

Brethren in the ADD Convention Center offering the sacrifice of thanksgiving to the Almighty through songs of praises. (Photo courtesy of MCGI-Photoville / Russel Julio)
Brethren in the ADD Convention Center offering the sacrifice of thanksgiving to the Almighty through songs of praises. (Photo courtesy of MCGI-Photoville / Russel Julio)

Before the three-day spiritual feast of the Church, three special one-day International Thanksgiving to God celebrations on April 30, June 18, and June 25 were held, respectively.

In the Philippines, the event’s main point will be the ADD Convention Center, in Apalit, Pampanga. Internationally, the ITG will be hosted in different coordinating centers across the globe.

A Quarter Full of Blessings, Events

For the past three months, MCGI has received bountiful blessings from the Almighty, as exemplified by its consecutive, successful Church activities.

Just days after the first quarterly ITG, the spiritual and physical wellbeings of almost 2,000 mothers of the Church were fortified during the 2nd annual International Mothers’ Convention.  

After that, the Music Ministry showcased their talents in singing and acting as they took part in the first Music Ministry Musical Play Festival, held on April 24-25, 2016.

In the past quarter, Bro. Daniel Razon visited MCGI coordinating centers in the Philippines’ farther provinces and several countries in Southeast Asia. Bro. Razon serenaded Filipinos in Hongkong and left lessons in love and life during the “Labour of Love” Benefit Concert on May 1, 2016.

Bro. Daniel Razon, Assistant Overall Servant to MCGI, is surrounded by brethren and take photos with them during the “Labour of Love” Benefit Concert held in Hong Kong on May 1, 2016. (Photo courtesy of MCGI-Photoville/ Jeffrey Navarro)
Bro. Daniel Razon, Assistant Overall Servant to MCGI, is surrounded by brethren and take photos with them during the “Labour of Love” Benefit Concert held in Hong Kong on May 1, 2016. (Photo courtesy of MCGI-Photoville/ Jeffrey Navarro)

On May 2, 2016, youth members  from different corners of Metro Manila took advantage of the summer break and participated in the annual Metro Manila Youth Sports Activity (MMYSA).

After just a few weeks, MCGI youth and adult members joined hands and readied public schools for the upcoming school year in the DepEd’s Brigada Eskwela program. This is on top of MCGI’s weekly medical mission events and quarterly mass blood donation drive event.

Meanwhile while in South Korea, Bro. Daniel announced that the Ang Dating Daan’s Worldwide Bible Exposition will start live streaming via Facebook Live and Youtube Livestream on June 10, 2016. The Bible Exposition’s social media debut is the latest among the propagation efforts of MCGI.

With the goal of reaching out to as many souls as possible, weekly Bible Expositions in Spanish and in Portuguese are held.

Most recently, the A Song of Praise Music Festival Year-End 5775 event showcased eight new songs of praise to God, with an entry from North America titled “Since My Younger Days,” winning the MCGI-exclusive event.

ASOP Year-End finalists and interpreters perform a lively opening number during the praise song competition's grand finals night held on July 3, 2016. (MCGI-Photoville International / Christian Diversion)
ASOP Year-End finalists and interpreters perform a lively opening number during the praise song competition’s grand finals night held on July 3, 2016. (MCGI-Photoville International / Christian Diversion)

For His wisdom and love, MCGI gives thanks

Aside from the bountiful blessings and events, MCGI congregants have been showered with overwhelming wisdom from the Holy Scriptures through the topics delivered by Bro. Razon and Bro. Soriano.

In a topic served during a Thanksgiving to God event, Bro. Eli told the congregation that “If you enter Christ, you will stay [in Him].”

Bro. Eli Soriano, Overall Servant to MCGI, regularly serves topics to the MCGI congregants through live streaming. (Photo courtesy of MCGI-Photoville)
Bro. Eli Soriano, Overall Servant to MCGI, regularly serves topics to the MCGI congregants through live streaming. (Photo courtesy of MCGI-Photoville / CJ Tanedo)

“There is a gift to the Church that is not in others,” the International Evangelist further added.

The amount of astounding spiritual knowledge given to the Church garnered delight from MCGI members the world over.

“The latest topics that our preachers taught us are overwhelming. I am in so much awe that I could not even put it into words,” exclaimed Sis Debra Riveral, who expressed her heartfelt appreciation of the recent topics served to the congregation.

“As a worthless servant who has a lot of shortcomings, the understanding that was bestowed to the Church gives me so much hope to strive even more in doing good, no matter how hard it seems,” Sis. Debra of Lapu-Lapu, Philippines, added.

As early as now, brethren from different parts of the world share their anticipation of the Church’s grand quarterly event. On social media, the Church’s official Facebook page features daily video countdown shareables, leading to the ITG celebration.

I’m very excited! The unexplainable feeling of joy that fuels me every time we offer thanksgiving to Him is something I’m always looking forward to!” sis Maripol Picoc of Texas, USA vividly remarked.

Bro. Ejay Soledad, Assistant Division Coordinator of the Metro Manila Youth, also expressed his sentiment for the approaching event.
“In the upcoming International Thanksgiving to God, my hope is that God will provide us again with the gift of wisdom. May we receive God’s care, love and mercy,” Bro. Ejay said.

(Written By Sis Lovely She Cortezano)

North America Division’s Entry “Since My Younger Days” Triumphs in ASOP Year-End 5775 Finals

Apalit, PAMPANGA (July 3, 2016) — Praise song titled “Since My Younger Days” bagged the Song of the Year-End title during the A Song of Praise Music Festival Year-End 5775 Finals night held at the ADD Convention Center, Apalit Pampanga.

Sis Crystal Cruz smiles as she finishes interpreting the Song of the Year-End titled "Since My Younger Days" composed by Bro. Nonie Ramos and Bro. Pabemazar Atienza of New Jersey, USA. (MCGI-Photoville/ Christian Diversion)
Sis. Krystal Cruz smiles as she finishes interpreting the Song of the Year-End titled “Since My Younger Days” composed by Bro. Nonie Ramos and Bro. Pabemazar Atienza of New Jersey, USA. (MCGI-Photoville/ Christian Diversion)

Composed by Bro. Nonie Ramos and Bro. Pabemazar Atienza of New Jersey, USA – North America Division, the song triumphed in the Church-exclusive ASOP event. The winning entry was sung by first-time ASOP interpreter Sis. Krystal Cruz.

“I Sing My Heart To You,” a praise song composed by Sis. Marje Pelayo of Singapore – Asia/Oceania Division, won the 1st Runner Up prize, as interpreted by Sis. Marianne Liwanag.

Two entries took home the 2nd Runner Up prize — the first of which is a Kapampangan praise song titled “Kapatad Kung Tune” (My True Brother) composed by Bro. Juanito Dimalanta from Pampanga Division and interpreted by Sis. Patricia Guiao.

“Pagibig na Wagas” (Eternal Love), composed by Sis. Loida Del Rosario of Brazil, South America Division and interpreted by Bro. Nestor Torres, completed the winning pair. Incidentally, Bro. Nestor Torres won the Best Interpreter award for the evening.

The 3rd Runner Up prize was awarded to the praise song titled “Dahil Sa’Yo” (Because of You), composed and interpreted by Bro. Anton Estrella Jr. of NCR, Luzon Division.

Songwriting, Biblical Takeaways

Overall Servants to MCGI Bro. Eli Soriano and Bro. Daniel Razon spearheaded the judging of the song entries and provided useful songwriting and biblical takeaways for the participants and the audiences alike.

Overall Servant to MCGI Bro. Eli Soriano is all smiles as he announces the winners of the ASOP Year-End 5775 via live streaming.
Overall Servant to MCGI Bro. Eli Soriano is all smiles during the ASOP Year-End 5775 via live streaming. (MCGI-Photoville/ Christian Diversion)

The preachers commented on the technical aspect of each entry, encouraging the composers to better improve their craft.

“The lyrics and the melody may be better improved to make the song really ‘take off’, as composers say,” commented Bro. Daniel on one of the competition’s entries.

Bro. Eli., who expressed his musings on what he is looking for in a song of praise to the Almighty, said that it should “have wisdom, is not redundant, and has recall.”

Songwriters must also avoid writing lyrics that are too lengthy, according to Bro. Soriano, presenting the Bible as a good example.

“The Bible is written in full brevity. If there are repetitions written in the Bible, it is just to emphasize something very important,” stated Bro. Eli, citing Psalms 136:1-7.

Bro. Eli and Bro. Daniel emphasized on the more important spiritual content of each entry.

“A good song must have something to think about — something to ponder. A good song must have wisdom,” noted Bro. Eli.

“The power of a song of praise can open the heart of the Creator of heaven and earth,” added Bro. Eli, which the crowd at the ADD Convention Center in Apalit, Pampanga welcomed with applause.

Meanwhile, Bro. Daniel reminded the composers of an important task they must do before creating praise songs.

“Composing songs of praise to God is something that we must prepare for. Let us always seek God’s help. Let us not rely on our own understanding,” stated Bro. Daniel.

Bro. Daniel Razon happily gives his comments on one of the praise song competition's entries. (MCGI-Photoville/Christian Diversion)
Bro. Daniel Razon happily gives his comments on one of the praise song competition’s entries. (MCGI-Photoville/Inoh Monton)

Before announcing the evening’s grand winners, Bro. Daniel inspired the attendees to continue creating songs of praise to God.

“Whatever is good, we must think of and do. And this includes creating songs of praise to God. Let us not grow weary in creating songs of praise to God because that is our obligation to Him.”

“Thanks be to God for brethren like all of you, who are always in support of events like these,” remarked Bro. Daniel.

Cash Prizes and List of Participants

This year, Bro. Eli and Bro. Daniel gave the following cash prizes: PhP 100,000.00 for the Song of the Year-End, PhP 50,000.00 for the 1st Runner Up, PhP 30,000.00 each for the 2nd Runners Up, and PhP 20,000.00 for the 3rd Runner Up, respectively.

Consolation prizes of PhP 10,000.00 were also given out to the rest of the participants, as well as PhP 5,000.00 for the Best Interpreter award.

Here is the complete list of ASOP Year-End 5775 Participants:

Pagibig na Wagas

(Brazil – South America Division)

Composer: Sis. Loida Del Rosario

Interpreter: Bro. Nestor Torres

 

Tanglaw sa Ami’t Patnubay

(SF Bay – North America Division)

Composers: Bro. Nino and Sis Cecile Cristobal

Interpreter: Sis Bernadette Pestanas

 

Tapat Mong Tagaakay

(Davao – Mindanao Division)

Composers: Bro. Christian Tiozon and the Davao District ASOP Committee

Interpreter: Bro. Kevin Opulencia

 

Since my Younger Days

(New Jersey – North America Division)

Bro. Nonie Ramos & Bro. PA Atienza

Sis. Krystal Cruz

 

Dahil Sa’Yo

(NCR – Luzon Division )

Composer and Interpreter: Bro. Anton Estrella Jr.

 

I Sing My Heart To You

(Singapore – Asia/Oceania Division)

Composer: Sis. Marje Pelayo

Interpreter: Sis. Marianne Liwanag

 

Mga Sugong Tapat

(Cebu – Visayas Division)

Composers: Bro Ariel Trias and Bro. Marlon Abique

Interpreter: Bro. Mark  Andrew Libradilla

 

Kapatad Kung Tune

(Pampanga – Luzon Division)

Composer: Bro. Juanito Dimalanta

Interpreter: Sis. Patricia Guiao

View more photos of the A Song of Praise Music Festival Year-End 5775 Finals here.

 

(Written By Sis Pol Arellano)

MCGI Participate in DepEd’s ‘Brigada Eskwela’ Clean-up Program with LGUs, NGOs

Manila, Philippines (June 28, 2016) – The Members Church of God International (MCGI), along with various non-government organizations and local government units, actively helped in readying public schools across the country for the upcoming school year in DepEd’s annual Brigada Eskwela (School Brigade) program.

MCGI volunteers
UNTV and MCGI volunteers pose for a photo after their cleanup drive at San Agustin Elementary School.

Spearheaded by DepEd, the Brigada Eskwela is a week-long nationwide project which aims to sanitize, rehabilitate and prepare public schools across the Philippines for the start of classes. This year, the event happened from May 30 to June 4, 2016.

Now on its 14th year of inception, the Brigada Eskwela has since become an annual summer tradition for the education sector of the government.

This year, outgoing DepEd Sec. Armin Luistro kicked off the Brigada Eskwela program in Nueva Vizcaya with the theme, “We are for safe, orderly and well-prepared schools from kindergarten to senior high school.”

Education Usec. Mario Deriquito also called on all volunteers to join the cleaning and repair works in all public elementary and secondary schools across the country.

“We are asking our volunteers and our communities to ensure that there is nothing there that will impose danger to our students,” said DepEd Usec Deriquito.

Student members of the Bible Readers Society International - PUP Sta. Mesa chapter sweeping the grounds of the Lagoon Park during this year's week-long Brigada Eskwela program.
Student members of the Bible Readers Society International – PUP Sta. Mesa chapter sweeping the grounds of the Lagoon Park during this year’s week-long Brigada Eskwela program.

“We ensure the classrooms to be orderly and clean. We ask our volunteers to bring cleaning materials and painting materials and to be ready to do minor repairs.”

MCGI’s Brigada Eskwela Highlights

In cooperation with local government units across the Philippines, as well as non-government associations such the Home Owners’ Association, 4Ps Beneficiaries and Gabriela, the youth arm of MCGI heeded the call to help clean up and maintain numerous public schools nationwide.

Here are a few of MCGI’s Brigada Eskwela highlights across the nation:

  • Volunteers cleaned Novaliches High School’s covered court and classrooms, as well as donated electrical supplies for the school.
  • In Tandang Sora High School and Pugad Lawin High School in Quezon City, chairs were repaired, fixed and repainted.
  • Bread members in the Polytechnic University of the Philippines also took part by cleaning the university’s Lagoon Park.
  • In Limay, Bataan, aside from donating cleaning supplies, MCGI members also held a feeding program for the volunteers who helped with the school rehabilitation.
  • In Bacolod City, Saarba Elementary School and Handumanan National High School were among the schools that benefitted from the Brigada Eskwela program.
  • In Zamboanga City, MCGI volunteers were joined by policemen and deployed soldiers in the cleaning of public high schools across the city.

The charitable endeavor of MCGI is powered mostly by Youth Ministry members of the Church, and has been heavily commended by its beneficiaries.

“I am overwhelmed. I didn’t expect the overflowing of support from you volunteers, and that many have shown their concern for the cleanliness of the rooms that the children will be using,” exclaimed Brgy. Captain Crisel Beltran of Brgy. Bagong Silangan, expressing her thanks to the youth volunteers of MCGI who helped clean up their school.

(Written by Sis. Yanna Faye Ferrera)


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