Stories from From Foursquare Family
MISS (ko na) ION!
Rev. Kay Oyco Carolino
Host Pastor, A Foursquare Gospel Church in Marikina City
Growing up in the Foursquare family means a lot to me...
A large percentage of my whole being may be attributed to the influences of direct and indirect mentors in my life.
My childhood -- Sunday school was a 'must' for us as a family (the OYCO family). I never regretted any single Sunday that I was in my Sunday School classes. I received Jesus Christ in my young age. My young and not-so-young-anymore teachers were so good. They even showed us pictures of children who were white-skinned, black-skinned and brown-skinned. We PRAYED FOR THEM BELIEVING THAT JESUS LOVES THEM -- red, brown, yellow, black and white..all are precious in His sight.
In my intermediate days as a Cadet Crusader (not the violent kind of crusader but the courageous one because of the empowerment of the Holy Spirit), we were challenged to be knowledgeable about God's Word, including the Foursquare doctrines --- being able to memorize verses and sentences for Bible quiz. We were used by the Lord to teach other children in various barangays (towns), plainly BRINGING THE GOSPEL TO THE YOUNG GENERATION LIKE US.
My youth days were even more exciting because of Foursquare youth camps. It was not just about the strange places that we went to and the fellowship and 'sharing time (ST)' but it was also about ANSWERING THE CALL of GOD into various ministries. That was why I got involved more in sharing Christ through the gift of music. We BECAME GOD'S SERVANTS AND WITNESSES OF THE GOSPEL TO THE UNEBELIEVING.
My marriage to Pastor Starsky Carolino, who is now with the Lord, was providential because God had used me to minister to him and make him come to know Christ (he publicly acknowledged Jesus as his Savior and Lord during a film showing entitled, 'JESUS'). He was being groomed already to be a minister of a certain cult when Jesus found him. The rest of his life is history. Hallelujah!
For him, yes! But for me, not yet!
Now that I am the Pastor (of a Foursquare church in Marikina City, NCR), the passion to serve God through evangelism has never waned. It is evident in my preaching, in my conversations with people who I have an encounter with and in our church projects (such as musical concerts, campus ministry etc.). However, there is something I MISS! MISS-ION! (word pun intended)
We were an active missionary - sending church, we were a strong missions - giving church, we were deep in praying for missions - we knew the missionaries' names and the countries where they were assigned and their needs. But, sadly, the Missions thrust pales now in comparison with the past.
But, thank God! KAIROS came and I was one of those privileged to attend the course in Butusan City (my first time there, that's why, I longed for a 'pasalubong' stuff to take home to my staff). From the very first night, I could already sense that the Holy Spirit would stir up something that I know our church longs to do: to mobilize her constituents for MISSION WORK. For five looooong days, the Foursquare leaders went back to schooling with seatwork / homework which the staff called 'joy' sheets. Every lesson taught would leave a mark in my heart. There was fear, I admit, but it is being overcome by the challenge and desire to obey God's command to REACH THE UNREACHED AND MAKE DISCIPLES OF ALL NATIONS!
As I lead the 57 churches in our district (Metro Manila North District), I pray that I will be a catalyst to helping our constituents be and do what God wants them to become and do.
In our local church, as our yearly theme suggests with progression,
CATCH THE VISION TO GROW
CATCH THE DISCIPLESHIP FEVER
CATCH THE HEART OF GOD FOR MISSIONS AND EVANGELISM
May He find us FAITHFUL TO THE CALL.; not only me but all who have ALREADY heard the Gospel, not only once or twice or three times.
MISSION na ta!