Philippines

Tonton and Nona mark three years as Country Director Philippines

Tonton and Nona mark three years as Country Director Philippines

In the Philippines, EI’s work is sharing the gospel of Jesus, while also helping meet the practical needs of people affected by repeat major storms.

Antonio (Tonton) and Nona are missionaries in Palawan region of the Philippines. They both wear many hats: Antonio is a preacher, church planter and Bible study facilitator, while Nona is a high school teacher, church planting coordinator, and Sunday school teacher. The couple has served in the Philippines with EI since 2010.

March 2024 marks Tonton’s third anniversary as designated Country Director. Three years ago, Nona herself also became treasurer.

The Philippines is an area of intense seismic activity, with an average of 20 typhoons annually. Tonton and Nona recognize the great need to support people in the Philippines, who face these relentless weather events year after year. The first year in their current roles, Tonton and Nona’s ministry, in partnership with local churches, provided help for the people in the south, as they rebuilt their homes.

Currently, these missionaries have a partnership with a local church in Palawan through which they raise funds for fishing boats. This helps those who earn their primary income as fishers get back to work.

Livelihoods for many living in the Philippines are seasonal—when the seas become rough, they take to farming. EI also supports livestock and agriculture initiatives, providing farming inputs. Tonton has a desire to see people build greater farming capacity. “Their greatest need is to upgrade their farming capabilities,” he explains. “They need some tractors.”

Nona and Tonton know that there is an opportunity for discipleship in every interaction. “We inform the pastors that the help will encourage those farmers and fishermen to be more faithful in their tithing and in their Bible study. The help that we provide for them is not just for their livelihoods but to enhance their spiritual needs.”

Nona, who also helps run programming for the children of the fishermen in the community, adds that the discipleship includes entire families. “It’s more of a discipleship program. We tell the pastor to disciple them. They have Bible study every week, and they need to attend church so that they will have spiritual feeding.”

Pray for Tonton and Nona as they continue their work, travelling to different places to do Bible studies-face to face and checking on churches and projects situations.

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