My Sunday is usually a day of rest – for good reason. Even though I’m retired, I feel like I’m busier than I have ever been.
So, this Sunday, I took in my usual morning church service and then off with friends
to after-service lunch. Usually I go home afterwards and veg out, but a bright idea had hatched a few days ago. A missionary friend and I decided to attend an afternoon Philippino church service.
At 3:00 in the afternoon we both ended up at the Clearview Community Church. We were greeted by smiling faces, and a bit of an apology.
The pastor mentioned that he had not arranged for an English translation for the service. The singing time would be in English, the rest in Tagalog (Philippines national language).
My friend asked if I had ever been to a church service where I didn’t understand a word of the other language. She was all excited that I was in for a new experience.
The service started in what appeared to be typical fashion. When everyone got there, everyone was there and things began. The time was based on people and not our watches/phones.
I loved the short explanation to us as visitors – the presider of the service welcomed us both by name (there was enough pre-service chat time that we had exchanged names already). Then, there was an apology that they had been able to prepare for our visit properly. And finally there was talk about the congregation having all come from another country, and they were glad to have Canadians in the crowd.
I’ve listened on YouTube enough to know that some great contemporary singers come from the Philippines. This congregation had their own exciting singing time – there were some very gifted singers. But I’m not sure any of us would be touring the country soon. But we did have great enthusiasm. And, the men sang as much as the women!
Then a short testimony time. For those of you who don’t know what that is – let’s just say its a time to talk about your life and in the midst of that, talk about how God is in that life.
I heard the word, SALAMAT – a lot. Before the meeting began, we had asked the couple next to us to teach us a Phillipino word. The word for “thanks” seemed appropriate. And here it was, being spoken quite often – about God and about people who were a part of this group.
Then the pastor spoke – a good old fashioned church message with pentecostal flavour and fervor. Lots of clapping, Amens, laughter and soul searching. Afterwards I had an invitation to join together for supper, and chatting and laughing.
That’s what I like about Kindersley – the whole world lives here!
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