Here's some feedback from those who joined us for our recent trip in April 2019:
Basil – Tauranga What a wonderful thrill to meet the pastors of three or four churches and spend time in fellowship with them. What lovely, friendly congregations and wonderful young adults, some of whom are sponsored by Starfish Ministries. They are so bright and such godly young men and women. I was so blessed to spend time with them and the delightful young children at the DVBS (Daily Vacation Bible School) we helped with. We had a great week with Agape folks and a big thank you to Gina for your hospitality. Last, but not least, our few days spent at the Word of Life camps just blew me away. They are wonderful camps with amazing facilities and outlooks. We loved the opportunity to have this experience.
Kylie - Tauranga Visiting our past and new sponsor girls and their families, and staying with one of them was a real highlight. Getting to know them better and living their lifestyle for a while and being involved in special family events was really humbling and special.
Kris – Te Awamutu For me, the trip had it’s great points and some difficult points. The struggles of the heat and sleeping , sometimes, in close quarters among 6 or 7 others with the only toilet in the next door house. I also struggled at times with the language and couldn’t understand or be understood. But being together as a team, under a great leader who gave us strength to convey the word of Christ and see the enjoyment and encouragement gained by the people as we visited and joined in with them made a huge impact. We experienced lots of different things and situations and a saying that was often used was, “that’s the way it is”. It was really just something
amazing and yet something so different from what we were used to.
Would I go again? Yes I would!
Phoebe - Auckland Seeing the church workers, parents and youth tirelessly serving in their churches or ministries are inspirational. Some of these people have very little but serve diligently with what they have. It reminds me and challenges me to serve the church or community with whatever (resources, time, talents) I have. Whenever I look back on this trip, it's the memories of people that warms my heart. A worthwhile trip.
Thinking of joining us in the Philippines next year but don't know what to expect? Hear what some past missions trip attendees have said afterwards
2018 will be a major milestone for us at Starfish. It marks 10 years since we began in 2008 and we think it is worth celebrating. We are still in the early stages of planning but we are hoping to organise a celebration dinner in Hamilton on Saturday April 28th and we would love you to join us. More details will be released nearer the time.
We are inviting some overseas guests to join us so it should be a great night.
Starfish recently was able to sponsor 11 students to attend CTC camp in Bulacan in the Philippines. CTC camp is a 2 week discipleship training camp held in the summer holidays for young people. They learn many things such as Doctrine, Christian Growth, New Testament Survey, teaching Kids, and Evangelism.
Here's what some of them had to say:
For me the hardest subject is Doctrine because you need to study even the smallest part of the verse. But, I really love this because we proof the certain thing in the Bible and also sometimes we are having debate, we are acting as the other religion and we always lose because we are defending the wrong even we know the truth. In Christian Growth we study about those things that we need to do in Christian living. It includes baptism, breaking of bread, obedience, and other. And in New Testament Survey it quite bit hard for me because the Study Bible in this subject is very useful and I don't have that but, there’s a lot of things that I learn. In Teaching Kids I learn some strategies to catch the attention of the children. Also they teach how to do a lesson plan for VBS (Vacation Bible School). The last subject is Evangelism. I will never forget the things that I've experience in this subject. We go outside the campsite and we evangelize some people and after that I'm very relax and I want to evangelize people that I will see.
We also have sports time. Some sport I don't know how to play but in Basketball we reach the final game but lose hahaha. And in Volleyball we also reach the final and boom we are the champion hahaha and even we don't have trophy at least we have a food price and I think I gain weight....
Being a first term camper, I learned a lot their in the camp. Like one of the subject give the activity to do to survey of 10 books in the bible. That was give me a challenge for being a first term. That's why I am so thankful for all of you kuya who are willing help others to have an experience the love of God
It's very good... I have a lot of thing I know... Thank again Kuya
The 2016 school year begins soon in the Philippines and we have a number of new Starfish and new sponsors on board, so BIG WELCOME to the Starfish family! We now have the largest number of sponsored students we have ever had in our history.
Also BIG CONGRATULATIONS to a number of long-time students who have graduated recently. Well done for all your hard work and we pray God will continue to lead and guide you in your future career wherever that may be.
Here's some comments from a recent graduate....
It was on April 20 when I successfully finished my 15 years of studying. And now, new chapter of my life will be opened. World of employment is now welcoming me.
Starfish ministry, I thank you very much for your good heart, for your generosity, for your love, and for everything. Words are not enough to express how thankful I am but really I am so blessed to have you. You are God's gift for us. I want to do well in anything that I do because it is for the Lord, for the church, for my family, and also for you; I don't want to bring heartaches to all of you because you are all important to me. Thank you, thank you so much. I already finished studying but our communication will never be cut off. From time to time, I will still update you about what I'm doing.
One of our college students writes...
Following God was the most precious thing that I’ve done in my whole life. I am still in Feeding Program which became my family too. Caring for others was one of my heart’s desire. The feeling of completeness overflows in me every time I am teaching children and youths about the greatness of our God. While walking with God, I experienced lot of things either a best feeling or worst ones. I felt loneliness, anger, tiredness, and I also been criticized by the people around me. Those were not became a hindrance for me to stop serving God, all of those storms made me stronger and continue on working for God alone. In Him I have peace. I realized that, whatever happens as long as I’m with God I can overcome those struggles, and trials are like bubble that will fade away soon.