In the almost eight years I’ve lived in the Philippines, I’ve made hundreds of trip from Guimaras, our island province home, to nearby Iloilo City. Since Iloilo has many more shopping options than our island home, my asawa and I have found it necessary to make the 12-15 minute trip around two to four times a month. But I’ve never experienced what I did one junket: “Pump Boat Preacher Has Captive Audience.”
BACKSLIDER GOES TO CATHOLIC CHURCH
Because I attended an Assembly of God and an Independent Pentecostal Church for over 15 years, I’m well-versed on the Scriptures and Gospel Preachers. I still hold onto my core beliefs from those years though my wife and I now attend a local mass at the Trappist Monastery in Guimaras.
Many Pentecostals might consider me a “backslider” for attending a Catholic Church. The Church is considered a cult among some Christian circles.
PUMP BOAT PREACHER HAS CAPTIVE AUDIENCE
Since I’m well aware that Jesus teaches his followers to go out and preach the Gospel, Good News, I usually have no problem with someone doing just that.
But when you stand up in a pump boat and start addressing passengers who can’t flee and risk drowning if they do, I have an issue with that.
So when a young Filipina in her late 20’s or early 30’s did just and then passed around an envelope after her “sermon”, I had something to say.
THE KANO SPEAKS OUT
“I don’t want your envelope,” I loudly proclaimed. “You preach to a group of people on a pump boat that can’t leave and pass around an envelope. Jesus never did that. People were free to leave if they didn’t want to listen to His message.”
“You don’t have to give anything, sir,” the young woman explained.
“That’s not the problem. What church do you go to?” I asked.
“An independent Pentecostal church, sir,” came the reply.
“Which one? Where at?” I pressed.
She refused to answer and walked away.
ASAWA GIVES ME A POKE
Of course, I embarrassed my poor wife…again. She poked me in the ribs in an attempt to shut me up. But I saw other passengers on the pump boat nodding in agreement to what I said.
Look, again, I have no problem with someone expressing their religious beliefs. Just don’t do it on the pump boat ride from Iloilo to Guimaras if I’m a passenger. And don’t pass around your envelope.