The Philippines Past and Present

Dear reader – when you visit you may wonder what the story is behind our ‘Front page’ picture; well here is a  ‘ www.Wales about Llanelli’ report – from roundabout the time it was taken ~

Llanelli minister records services for Congregation in Philippines

Brian Bradley and wife, Shelia, have also helped with supplies of food and to set up six churches in different parts of the country

A Llanelli Minister has shared the amazing story of how a small Llanelli church has impacted the Philippines.

After preaching to a small congregation for many years, Mr Bradley received a request for help.  He said: “We received a call for help from the Philippines after they had heard my sermons online.  “We thought and prayed about it for two years and then we eventually went to meet them.  “My wife and I met with seven or eight people there and spoke to pastors.”  

The couple have visited the Philippines four times


One of the churches that Bryn Seion, Cynheidre has helped set up

Since their first visit, the couple have visited a further three times but have not been back since their last trip 10 years ago.

However, Mr Bradley is still able to preach, with the help of modern technology, as he often records sermons which are then listened to in the Philippines. He also does live video interviews via Skype.

Brian and Sheila haven’t been to the Philippines for ten years


That was then and now at the close of 2020 we now have this update for you ~ ‘s web site refers to our work in the Philippines so it’s needful some information should be given as to why a very small fellowship in one of the smallest villages in Wales are engaged in the work and have been since 2002.

So much could be stated concerning this work of God, but it must be brief with just a little information as to how God by a number of remarkable providences brought this about.

Early in 1979 we received a visit from an elderly brother in the faith who told us of a small church in the next village, about two miles from our home. It had been closed for some years and run down, but if I would agree to preach the gospel there, he could get us the key and possession of the building. We spent time thinking and praying concerning this matter and eventually agreed to go with him to view the building after he had returned the third time pleading in God’s Name that we must do so.

Some initial repairs were carried out and the first service was held there on the evening of May 13th 1979, and we have continued to worship God there for almost 42 years, looking to the Lord to bless our labour which we could not have imagined would be mainly so far away, among a people under the influence all around them of the idolatry of Rome, yet God has established churches there on sound Biblical grounds, following the ‘Regulative Principle’, in worship, doctrine and practice, what has been rejected and abandoned here in the West, has been picked up among these people and followed faithfully with joyful praise.

When we came to Bryn Seion which was built in 1906, we intended to preach the truth as we then understood it, but although convinced of the Sovereignty of Grace there was so much more we needed to learn, and being responsible to honour the Lord in bringing us there, we realized there were several important issues we needed to consider and bring into place what would accord with Biblical order, for what God has appointed weighed heavily upon our hearts.

In 1980 in the magazine of the Sovereign Grace Union (Peace and Truth) in the 3rd and 4th edition of that year there were articles upon ‘Praising God with Psalms’ and ‘Why Psalms only’? This brought us to consider the important issue of our Praise of God, but due to lack of unity among us, it was not until 1985 we had come to follow this position with the organ also removed to render our worship in song with the melody of the heart.

Not long after this, in coming to unity in what we sought to do, we addressed church polity, and by the help and influence of the excellent work of the Puritan Thomas Goodwin (Volume 11 of his works) where he addresses this subject at length, and The ‘Keys of the Kingdom’ by John Cotton, and The ‘Cambridge Platform’, we  were convinced of Congregationalism, which with covenantal theology brought us to appreciate the position of the child within God’s covenant, being Paedo-baptists.

We were just a small number but we continued believing God had brought us there for a purpose for there had been so many clear providences, that had not only brought us there but had keep us there during times of much trouble and unrest within. During this time, my fellow elder was Daniel Bowen who was elderly and lived alone as a bachelor, and in the year 2000 he told me he would be leaving his property to Bryn Seion for he with us was convinced it would be needed in God’s appointed time. Brother Bowen died on the 9th March 2001, and in February 2002 we received an email from the Philippines asking for help, that they needed prayer and literature which we believed was of the Lord, so we commenced by sending them a few hundred books through the help of the Banner of Truth Trust. The money left us was used in building Jireh and some other work, with Jireh being the main building and the centre of the work.

They were a small number of people in 2002 several of them pastors, who had left the Christian Missionary Alliance in having come to a reformed position and looking prayerfully for help in providing them mainly with teaching, although in much need financially. We sought to guide and teach them by email with constant requests to come to them, which we didn’t do until 2004 and also in the next three years, so we have been among them four times, seeking to organize and encourage them in the work of God’s cause. They hold an annual Camp Meeting when they seek to all get together and now that there are churches which have been constituted, there are anniversary services which receive the ministry from Bryn Seion, at all these services up to the present time.

There are presently eight churches, five of which have been constituted, but two are very recent and the churches have the names  Jireh, Bethel, Ebenezer, Bethesda, Providence, Berea and Bethany with one still to be named, There is also work in the mountain area of Tagmaray carried out from Jireh, and Bethel work each Sabbath afternoon in the Claver District which is a mining area. They are a sort of tribal people who are very closely knit together and so they will all come together when Pastor Ebenezer Nombre visits them with the word, about 50 families, so they are busy with mission work, each minister engaged in giving Bible Studies in homes for many will welcome them, although mainly a Roman Catholic people.

Not so long ago we lost the minister in Bacolod (Negros), whom God called home, a faithful pastor (George Engkong), but he had been preparing an able person to guide them, whose presently doing so, with the support of the deceased ministers faithful wife.

            Philippines political map

There are now Congregational churches in Cagayan de Oro City (Jireh), Gingoog City (Ebenezer), Surigao City (Horeb). In the village of Gigaquit (Bethel) in Mayag (Bethesda), and in Baungon (Bethany) each in the Southern island of Mindanao, with (Berea) being in Negros. The minister of Jireh became the superintendent of the work with the help of his family with his eldest son Kim taking on much of the organizing work at this important stage. The roots have gone down deep and after the toil of these years much fruit is the result which is all of the Lord to whom the glory belongs, for what He has done and continues to do there. 

We at Bryn Seion are deeply thankful to our supporters who have been such a help in financing this ongoing work, by various means, being few but so faithful and generous;

May the Lord Jesus bless them for having done so.