Philippines - Ban on Social Media
Our dear friends and fellow labourers,
This comes, sharing with you, a burden that weighs heavily. It is concerning the telephone hook up system that we are using for some to listen in on meetings who are not physically able to be there. This resulting desperate need in the hungry hearts of precious souls, we truly do appreciate...and likewise we yearn to do, and encourage others, to feed and nurture every such precious soul.
With the increasing improvements in communication technology, the help for folk to listen in to meetings, is becoming better and easier accessed...thus our concerns grow too, regarding the possible dangers that may lie in the shadows if such was handled unwisely, and also our feeling for those who have worked long and hard to set it all in motion and still have the burden of saying who is eligible to listen into the system and who is not eligible, a very difficult task and maybe one that should not be laid on the shoulders of any man. We surely appreciate every effort and labour of all who have worked hard under this burden for some time now to help provide this service for needy souls not able to physically manage now to get out and share in meetings as they once nobly did.
This brings us to, what can we do to help and encourage these precious souls, who crave fellowship, as we all do...Thus looking into God's Word, we see the measure of what is true fellowship, as John wrote about the same..."Truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ" (1 John 1:3). We would not want to do anything by mechanical means, or any other means, that may rob these dear souls of this treasure, which is the God given privilege of every soul who obeys God, from the youngest to the eldest. (Acts 5:32) But to then make ourselves available to go to those, who cannot physically do so, and share with them and they with us, God given treasures, gleaned from times when we have fellowship with our wonderful "One" above and also pass on what others have shared with us...the sharing then can be in life and Spirit also.
It is with high regard to all who have laboured and benefited by this system made available for use over recent times, and we feel the pain of having to now lay aside the use of this telephone hook up system. We do so yearn that the gap that is left, and felt so keenly can be filled, and more, by God's grace in other ways that will open up as we endeavour to do as Jesus taught, telling of the Samaritan man who had a heart to go to the wounded man, "came where he was". We all need help...it is as someone told years ago..."God's Kingdom is built and maintained on sacrifice."
Thank you truly for your time and care to understand our concerns for the sake of our Master's precious Kingdom.
Your servants for His dear sake,
Ban on Social Media
By Jim Girton, John Mastin, Bill Walker, Renante Fermin
Our Dear Philippine Worker Staff, June 2018
We feel it important to inform the whole staff regarding the use of Social Media on the Internet.
Some of our fellow workers and brethren locally and from abroad have expressed their concern. This input has come from them over a period of time. Several times it has been very clearly requested in our local workers staff meetings that all on our staff would cease using Facebook and close their accounts immediately on this social media. We want to be in unity with our brethren around the world in our stand on matters such as this.
Now, we have been discussing this again and we feel we need to also express this message to our friends in each field here in the Philippines. We would like to ask each pair of workers in your field to kindly request that our friends discontinue usage of any kind of social media. This would include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, the Web sites True Friends, Filipino Friends, etc.. We are asking that from now on, each would limit their communication to e-mail for personal contact among friends when sending messages, pictures, etc.. No longer posting their messages on social media Web sites which is sent all over the world, reaching our brethren in other nations.
We feel this will help our fellowship to be focused again on the simple truths of maintaining our relationship with God through prayer, reading the scripture, meditating, attending gospel meetings and fellowship meetings. We thank each of you in advance for your efforts to express this message to our friends in each field.
Your Brothers and Fellow Laborers in Christ,
Jim Girton, John Mastin, Bill Walker, Renante Fermin