Typhoon, torrential rains could not stop HLG’s mission trip ministry in the Philippines
“He said to them, ‘Go into the world and preach the good news to all creation…’.”
Some mission trips are for encouraging, some are for equipping, and others are for meeting physical needs. Yet all mission trips are evangelistic in nature. On May 6, 2006, a team from Hannibal-LaGrange College went to a place where people had never heard the name “Jesus” spoken before. The team of nine students and adults from Hannibal-LaGrange College as well as the Quezon City Medivangelism Team traveled to the Philippines and saw first hand how God continues to perform miracles today.
The focus ministry was on the villages of Sto. Nino and Samar. The team began with a prayer walk of the villages and then set up mobile medical clinics. With the help of two medical doctors, an ophthalmologist and a dentist, 2,553 patients were treated in eight days of clinic work. For those who could not be treated, the team spent time comforting and praying for each individual. Along with the medical clinics, the team helped a crew set up for evening film presentations and led one-day Vacation Bible Schools for the children.
Bill Horstmeyer, director of planned giving at HLG, shared the plan of salvation to the Filipino people. Those who were interested in the message received counseling from the evangelist. Every night a Christian film was shown and the invitation to accept Christ was given. According to Horstmeyer, primitive cultic practices were very prevalent in these villages. “It was a very hard soil,” he said.
Midway through the trip, a typhoon hit the islands causing the homes and villages to lose power and phone service for several days. Faced with enormous obstacles, the team only worked harder. Knowing that the people from the villages do not like to get out in the rain, the team prayed for the rain to stop in order for the evangelistic services to continue. Matthew Simer, pastor of San Jose Community Church in San Jose, IL recounts the miracle:
“As I meditated on the scriptures of faith in Mark 11:22-24 and the prayers of Elijah in James 5:17 to stop the rain, I heard the voice of God say, ‘STEP OUT INTO THE RAIN AND ASK ME’. I began to think I heard what I wanted to hear from my own mind, so I began praying more and said if Elijah prayed and it stopped for 3 ½ years, surely you would grant me a few hours, and then I heard His voice again say, ‘STEP OUT INTO THE RAIN AND ASK ME’. I then turned to Bro. Tall Paul and told him what God had said and then took off my hat and stepped out into the rain and asked God again to stop the rain in the name of Jesus and it stopped as if the faucet was turned off. It was immediate and we began to praise God and then we prayed that the people would come and they did. We led 32 teenagers to Christ while the rest of the team worked with the adults. Bro. Bill Horstmeyer preached the Gospel and gave and invitation and 82 adults accepted Christ.”
A total of 5,704 people prayed to receive Christ during this mission trip. Horstmeyer had nothing but good things to say about the team, saying they were “a God-called, spirit-filled team.”
Simer added, “This trip was an awesome experience and I can hardly wait to return. Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ for the 5,704 souls that were added to the church.”