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Graduation in the Philippines

by Laurie Lind, Entrust staff writer

Pomp and Circumstance played in the background while, one by one, 13 women stepped up to receive their certificates of completion. Three pastors attended to present these certificates to the women from their respective churches. It was November 2021.

Pastor Rico Gelit (pictured, with graduate Rea Pablo) charged the women to use what they have learned just as Timothy used what Paul taught to him, adding, “I have already seen the fruit of these trainings.” He was referring to Bible study groups the first Facilitating Relational Learning graduates have implemented in their local churches.

Not only had that first group started Bible study groups, they’d also mentored eight new women who took FRL, and, had completed Entrust’s second training module, Developing a Discerning Heart.

It all started in May 2021 with the first five women, some from fairly difficult backgrounds, doing hours of pre-work at home, traveling back and forth by taxi, bus and sometimes foot, to a center equipped with a computer and usually, internet connectivity. They interacted online with Entrust facilitators led by Emily Garcia, our Philippines hub coordinator, about the concepts they’d studied at home.

In October 2021, the original five took DDH while their eight new recruits took FRL. Emily says the goal is to hold the first-ever in-person training in February 2022, with eight new women in FRL, the second group of eight in DDH and the first group of five in Discovery Bible Study (our third module).

It’s not just replicating a system. It’s transformative learning in which each woman learns from and about the word of God, grows in her personal walk with Christ and gains ministry skills to use in her church, workplace, community and home as a Christian leader.

One of the November graduates, Rose, wrote what the training meant to her.

“‘Out of words’ and ‘in tears.’ This is how I could describe this journey. God has been so good, so faithful and gracious to all of us. I couldn't imagine how it happened so fast. It seems like we just started this training, and now we already reached this moment (but wasn't the end yet). Everything is worth it, the time, effort and dedication of every single lady here will never ever be in vain. God called us in this journey, He entrusted to us this ministry. All of us are looking forward for what God is going to do as we go farther.”

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