Originally from Sulu, Zamboanga and North Borneo, the Samal and the Badjao are nomadic, boat-dwelling people who reached Palawan in the recent years and majority of them now live in the city of Puerto Princesa. The Badjao are also called “sea gypsies” as they spend life on small boats or in houses built over the sea. In recent times, some Badjao – especially those whose lives have become semi-sedentary and those in Jolo, Sulu – have embraced Islam. Meanwhile, the Samal Bangingi occupies a portion of Isla de Mariquit, Double Island, Sidanaw and other neighboring islets of Quezon town.
As I read the trip summary that Ptr James wrote below, I was impressed at how Ptr James was accepted and fit in well because of his servant heart and humble background. I think this is a great example of how a home-grown Filipino missionary can be more effective than expensive and culturally hampered American missionaries.
It was nice that Ptr James was able to locally raise the full P13,000 = $288 that he needed for this two-week exposure trip without needing the $110 that the PAMI board approved at the March 16th board meeting. I think many of the local PAMI people stood behind him with prayer and financial help. Isn’t it great when they cover some things themselves, despite their limited means. I guess they can more use our American help towards the larger $800 amount that he’ll need to raise for the upcoming two moth exposure trip to Mongolia in October. Note that ACM will provide half of the $1600 cost of the Mongolia trip. Let’s pray about helping him cover this other $800. I think we should mention this in the next PAMI newsletter that will get sent out in May.
Praising God for all His wondrous works,
P.S. I am attaching a scan of Ptr James’ fundraising letter for his upcoming two month exposure trip to Mongolia.
— On Tue, 4/6/10, Chito Mendizabal wrote:
Hi Bro mike. I’m forwarding to you James’ email about their short mission trip to Bataraza Palawan, working with one of Filipino minorities, the tribe of Badjao. From some of the text messages of James, he said that he’s very much adjusted with the Badjao’s (probably in compared with most of the team who have city-life) because he too lives near the seashore and very used to very simple way of living like bathing in just a corner, or toilet in just anywhere; eat anything or sleep anywhere.
That makes James a very suited candidate for mission in difficult places like Mongolia, and his easily going along with people.
By the way, I sent you via mail 3 cds or dvds of EBI March 23 graduation, Randy’s radio CD, and 5 thank you cards. I sent it special delivery, so might be there in about a week.
The love and grace of God abounds in us!
Love in Christ,
From: Arman Formanes
To: Chito Mendizabal
Sent: Tue, April 6, 2010 10:50:21 AM
Subject: ACM & local Exposure Mission in Palawan
Dear, Ptr. Chito & Bro. Mike!
Greetings to you from our Lord Jesus Christ, may the love of God be with you!
I really thank God to those who have part in our Evangelistic mission at Bataraza Province of Palawan, thanks to you who pray for us, our mission was successful through the grace of God, right now I can say that our mission was so meaningful and unforgettable; I see personally how God works in us, when we travel going to palawan until we go back here in Manila. This was the itinerary of our Mission at Bataraza Badjao tribes the Province Palawan. March 23rd, our flight from Manila going to Puerto Princesa City, we stay there for one day at CAMACOP Church, at 9:30 we travel going to the town of Bataraza, we traveled around 6ours from Puerto Princesa City, and the Mayor of that town are gave us a warm welcome and prepared us a beautiful rooms one for the girls another one for the Boys. We stay in Bataraza for one day, Mayor Abbi Abba of Bataraza was very good to us, he offered also a service (car) going to our target area, at community of Badjao or Badjao tribes, around 10:30am we traveled going to our target place(i forgot the name of that place), after 30minutes we were already in that place. I’m happy when a see the tribal people, I see in there face a confident that we are a good person or men & women of God, I was really blessed by their lives because they are devoted to God they are willing to listen to the word of God, and I was also blessed by one child there name Jayson because when he saw me he came near me and don’t like to go away from me; he kept on holding at my shirt, masaya (glad) at nalungkot (saddened) ako at naawa (pitied him) pa, especially when we visited at their house; I pray to the Lord for their Family, until our Mission team leader said go in every house you want stay and talk to the host/owner to accomodate each one of us to their house, and it wasn’t hard for me to decide because Jayson was there holding my shirt, so I and a partner stayed at Jayson’s house. Our Mission team satyed there until four days, and we ministered also to the native people in Palawan through teaching the children and feeding, and I praise God because He gives us an opportunity to help them, because their needs especially their dally lives because they live at the seashore they hvea fish net and our team are make a contributions to buy a net and goods to give them before we go. We’re so blessed by there lives especially the pastor of their church, because they were contented with very simple way of living doing what the Lord wants Him to do. Last night we’re so happy because they conduct a dance party, they dance the Muslim dance according to their culture; as for me it was very difficult because of language barrier, but Praise God because He gives me wisdom to learn their language, and i learned more like for example: good morning in Badjao or muslim Hap-Subo; good afternoon Hap-Kohap; good evening, Hap-Sangom, and many more, and after our mission, we go back to the proper of Bataraza we stay at CAMACOP Church over night, and we traveled going back at Puerto Pricesa City, and the Lord gives an opportunity to see God’s wonderful creation, ACM gave the team a tour to the best tourist spots of Palawan, first the HONDA BAY, we visited the island beach resort, second we visit the 7wonder of nature the UNDERGROUND RIVER, third we go bakers hill, to God be the glory and Honor!
Servant of God:
Bro. Arman O. Formanes
Below is a scan of Jame’s support letter. Note that his target departure date is now October 2010 rather than June.