Thanksgiving with laughter

POSTED ON 2010-10-05
  by Dena McMaster

Life is often difficult for the Manobo believers in the Philippines. They are often hassled by family and friends who do not want them to leave the "old ways." The general harshness of life in the jungle adds to the difficulty, so normally it would not seem that there are many things to be thankful for.

But church leaders decided to have a Thanksgiving weekend this year. They declared that there needed to be a feast to express their gratitude for God’s gifts to them. They chose Sept. 25 as their feast day to be followed by a celebratory service on Sunday morning.

One of the Bible teachers, Piduy, has been praying for personal revival for some time. Missionaries Trevor and Judy Clark and Gene and Carol Trudeau have consistently prayed for revival among all the Manobos.

And God is answering their prayers. As dawn broke on Saturday, Sept. 25, the village began preparing a feast. It was an incredibly hot day but that did not stop the joyous preparations. People talked and laughed and enjoyed one another. It took nearly all day to prepare and cook the food.

The missionaries spent most of the day outside and according to Judy they looked like matchsticks at the end of the day -- red faces and white bodies. People were fed in relays, so whoever wasn’t in the church eating was outside socializing.

"It was one of the most fun days I have ever had here," wrote Judy. "It was so worth spending the time with the people and being amongst it all.

Praise God for the spirit of thankfulness among the Manobos.

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