Sunday, February 5, 2012

SULADS, Inspirational Men of God

         by Regin Reyno

         Yesterday-Sabbath day- I was blessed by the coming of the SULADS to Ramkamhaeng International Seventh-Day Adventist Church at Bangkok, Thailand. "Sulads" means brother in the Manobo dialect. Manobo is one of the hill tribes of southern Philippines. It is also an acronym for Socio-economic Uplift Literacy Anthropological and Developmental Services. So basically, this is an organization of missionary volunteers to the Manobos and some other hill tribes and ethnic groups in southern Philippines. They are based in Mountain View College, a Seventh-Day Adventist College in Valencia, Bukidnon.

Three of the SULADS Quartet with sir Daryll Famisaran 
              Sir Daryll Famisaran, the director and one of the founders of SULADS led their team who came to Thailand, accompanied by his wife and three of the SULADS Quartet. The SULADS Quartet gave the special music during the divine service. Sir Daryll gave the sermon while his wife was in charge of the powerpoint illustrations.

         It was so inspiring to see these brave missionaries who offered their lives for the cause of God. Being a missionary in the thick  jungles of Southern Philippines is no easy task. Sir Daryll gave a very inspiring sermon about their experiences in the jungles of southern Philippines ministering to the Manobos. He related how God protected them from dangers. The congregation were really attentive when he told their experience when a Japanese ADRA volunteer joined them to hike to one of the villages and how the chief who was a victim of Japanese Imperial Army abuses during World War II wanted to kill that Jap volunteer, and how God intervened.

         While he gave his testimonies, I can really visualize how they hiked through those thick tropical jungles with all the dangers. These are real travelers and adventurers.

SULADS with the author. Bangkok, Thailand
         Because of these SULADS missionaries, many Manobos, a native ethnic tribe who can readily kill anyone who crosses their path were converted to be Seventh-Day Adventist Christian worshiping the one and only true God. The SULADS Quartet are all Manobos who were converted. And when they offered the special song, "It is No Secret What God Can Do", it amazed me how the power of the Holy Spirit can transform lives. Thanks to the SULADS who braved their way through thick jungles, wild rivers, leeches, unfriendly tribes, ravines, and extreme temperature, these ethnic tribes were able to know the living God and Jesus Christ our saviour. Now that is traveling with a heavenly purpose! As a mountaineer, one of my dreams is to hike with the SULADS and be in the one of the villages of the Manobos in the jungles of southern Philippines.