After a long day of travel for many of the guests, the IPFBM All-Partners Conference began Monday evening, Nov. 6 in Tagaytay City, Philippines. Sixty-five international pastors and laypeople from three continents and eight countries are attending this International Partnership of Fundamental Baptist Ministries conference, held at the Tagaytay Retreat and Training Center through Friday, Nov. 10.

 Chris Hindal, director of Regular Baptist International,  welcomed the guests and outlined the goals of the conference:   (1) to strengthen relationships among IPFBM partners, (2) to provide instruction in church planting strategies, (3) to find ways to supply pastors and associations with resources, and (4) to encourage the IPFBM partners to work together.

“The last thing this partnership should be is a list of associations,” Hindal says. “We are a functioning body, and we need one another to fulfill the Great Commission assignment. Let’s find those who are doing parallel ministries and see how we can help each other. Let’s learn of new ministries that we can launch together that we can’t do on our own.”

H.C. Stephen, president of the IPFBM Council of Eight, gave the opening message, challenging the international partners to gain a fresh vision of God. His message focused on three points from from Isaiah 6: an upward look, an inward look, and an outward look.

“We need to catch a fresh vision of the Lord every day,” he says. “We need an almighty God to break us, to mold us, and to use us for His own glory. Seeing God in His fullness will help us see ourselves as weak and broken, needing His help to do His work.”

Some of the IPFBM partners lost no time in making new friends and learning ministry strategies from each other over the evening meal on Monday. Jim Garcines, pastor of Filipino International Baptist Church in Sacramento, California, talked with a pastor from India. Garcines says, “He was very interested to learn about our ministry in the Filipino culture in the USA. He learned that the strategy in America is more of a cultural approach. I learned something new about his strategy that we can apply in our ministry. I learned that you have to accept their way of life in order to win them.”

Throughout the conference, all the services will open with congregational singing led by Spencer Gequillana and three other musicians from Bethel Fundamental Baptist Church in Dasmariñas City, Philippines. And each morning of the conference will begin with a 6:15 prayer session before breakfast to “feed our souls before we feed our bodies,” Chris says.

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