bk_Refresh1_1280-fullFort pastors met this morning (first of a series of meetings every Thursday morning) to talk about how we can refresh, reboot, recharge, revitalize, re… something our small group ministry (need a thesaurus for more “re” words).

Since last week, we’ve been thinking of our rallying cry for the next 12 months which is “SMALL IS BIG.” What does this actually mean?

In our context, it means, small group ministry is HUGE for us. Small groups is a BIG deal for us.

Why? Because we know that at this moment, we believe that small group ministry still is the best vehicle to be discipled and make disciples.

I wrote about why we feel it’s the most effective vehicle several blogs ago. Click here to read.

Genesis 2:18 tells us that “it is not good for man to be alone.” Yes, this was written in the context of marriage but it certainly goes beyond just the marriage relationship. It is a principle that is applicable to building community.

“Sheep are never attacked in herds. They are often attacked when they become isolated from the rest of the flock.” (Andy Stanley)

Small is big. It’s so HUGE for us that we are planning something MAJOR… as in BIG in the next few months.

Watch out for that.


Because of the overwhelming response, we are going to have an afternoon celebration on July 24, 2009, Friday at 3 pm.  Same program, same excitement, same celebration!


Saw this prayer request from one of our church goers at the 7 pm service. Blessed my socks off! Love his heart and attitude…

chance to know Him

ANSWERED PRAYER: “I’m just glad I have the chance to get to know Him!”

What heart!

My prayer: “Lord, let it be like this for ME every single day.  Let there be freshness in my relationship with you so that I am “JUST GLAD I HAVE THE CHANCE TO GET TO KNOW YOU!”


20940_logoIt’s been said that you have to be relevant to connect with your audience.  While I definitely agree with that concept, relevance has become a bit too overrated.

As a result, we see preachers try to dress like a teenager when he’s actually 40, using terms young people use when it’s not something they use in everyday language, ‘evolving’ into someone else other than themselves … just to be relevant…

Jesus didn’t just try to be relevant, He connected.  And there’s a HUGE difference.  For what reason?  To bring them to a relationship with the Father through His word.

Bottomline, it’s the Word.  Be yourself.  Live for Jesus.  Speak His Word.   And people will see Jesus in you and through you.

In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father. (Matt. 5:16)


in his handsHe’s got you and me, baby, in His hands…

He’s got the whole world in His hands!

… with a mighty hand and outstretched arm; His love endures forever. (Psa. 136:12)


4638_90858898290_605023290_1787355_4103019_nJust got back from a whole day strategic meeting with all our pastors, campus ministers and staff at the Fort.

Carlos Antonio helped us so much as he went through “ESTABLISHING A THEMATIC GOAL ROADMAP” inspired by the book “Silos, Politics and Turf Wars” by Patrick Lencioni.  So much help in figuring out what’s our “scoreboard” and what are the steps we need to take to get to where we need to go.

A few thoughts….

  • The bigger the organization, the more the people focus on the parts and not the whole.
  • As in a football team, there are defense coaches and offense coaches.  They can spin off into their own worlds but what will unite them is the scoreboard.  Them being on top is at the end of the day their goal.
  • “If everything is important, then nothing is important.”  We lose the power when we’re not focused.

After a very, very, very long discussion, we discussed what’s the single, temporary and qualitative rallying cry that we can all share as members of one team.  It had to be clear, concise, achievable and measurable.

What we value, we measure.

So, at the end of our loooooooonnnnnngggggg discussion, our rallying cry for the next 12 months at the Fort is…

A commitment to re-emphasize the importance and value of small group ministry…

Will share more about this in the coming days…


Our home made OREO commercial when Nathan was about 7 years old and Janina was just about 4.

I love making family videos!  Super fun watching it after so many years…



You can’t miss this celebration!  Victory @ 25 on July 24, 2009, Friday at 8 pm.

Because of an overwhelming response, there will also be an afternoon celebration on the same day, July 24 at 3 pm.  Tickets will start selling this coming Monday, June 15 at 10 am by phone and at TicketNet outlets.

Reason for this, 4 hours after TicketNet opened, 8,000 people already bought tickets and the only available seats by then were only from the General Admission section.

See you then as we celebrate 25 years of God’s faithfulness to Victory.

“THANK YOU” – Joaquin


Just wanted to let you know that I’m back home.

My doctor, Dr. Cheng of Medical City discharged me noon today. The symptoms of Kawasaki are gone. My coronary artery is slightly enlarged with some water in it. But we are trusting God for complete healing. We were told that it usually resolves itself. It won’t resolve itself because God will…

Good thing is that we can do the 2D echo to monitor my heart as outpatient so I don’t have to stay in the hospital and eat hospital food which is not my most favorite.

To all who prayed with mommy and daddy and helped us through this challenging time, thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

God is awesomely good.


We switched to small group ministry model at Victory some time ago because we realized that discipleship cannot happen in a crowd.  Back in Shangri La days, the church grew by huge numbers yet we weren’t sure how many were effectively being discipled.

Even Jesus had his small group of guys he was coaching and mentoring.

It has been the strategy we felt was applicable and effective.  Strategy is defined as a plan of action inteded to accomplish a specific goal.  Any strategy should be simple and easy to implement.

Understandably, we are open to other strategies if we see that something will work better but at this point, small groups is the way to go.

Why do we feel it’s applicable and effective?

1. Small groups help us engage people for Christ.

  • Many are willing to first attend a small group environment before coming to church.  “Some want to belong first before they are willing to believe.” (Andy Stanley)

2. Small groups equip every member to be a minister.

  • Ministry is not limited only to those who are in “full-time”.  Ephesians 4:11-12 tells us that the full time ministers job is to equip the people to do the works of ministry.

3. Small groups empower more people to serve.

  • Church has looked like a basketball game all too often – 10 players badly needing some rest, while 10,000 people who badly need some exercise, watch .

4. Small groups help establish authentic community.

  • Discipleship is relationship.  We’ve heard that all too often.  It’s relationship with God, with other believers and with the rest of the world.  Small groups help establish authentic community with fellow believers.

5. Small groups offer maximum flexibility.

  • Small group meetings can be anywhere – Starbucks, Pancake House, basketball court, office, at home… anywhere!

6. Small groups allow us to be better stewards of what God has given.

  • With small groups going on in many different locations, the need to have huge facilities will be at minimum so we can re-channel the funds for other ministry opportunities.

7. Small groups remove major growth limitations.

  • One of the major limitations to growth for churches is venue limitations.  Our Ortigas church meets in a very small space in a mall yet has more than 8,000 people.  How can this be?  Small groups!

So… what do you think?…  Let’s go!