We’d like to open the Book of Luke, Chapter 4. We’re going to take a page from this amazing piece of Scripture that talks about why Jesus came into our world:

How many of you believe that?

May I share with you my favorite core memory here at The Feast?

It happened many years ago. I think I’ve shared this a couple of times. If you are new here, I pray that you receive this with fresh ears and an open mind.

Many years ago, I was serving here at The Feast. One day, at the end of our session– we had two sessions in the morning– I was on my way to my car out there in the parking lot when somebody came up to me– somebody I had never met, somebody I had never seen ever. I knew that he was a first-timer and that he didn’t know me.

Why? Because he called me Brother. That means he is a first-timer. And because he called me only Brother, he didn’t know my name.

He said to me, “Brother, may I talk to you for a few moments?” I was like, “Sure. How may I help you?”

Before I knew it, he was already telling me his whole life– about the struggles that he was going through and how he was a recovering alcoholic. And because he was living with the bottle for many years, eventually his wife of eight or nine years, left him and she took their two kids with her.

For Whom Our Church Exists

To cope with the loneliness, the pain, and the loss of his family, he became addicted to drugs. And at the time we met, he had been taking shabu for almost eight months.

That morning, he decided to take a stroll around the Cultural Center complex with no agenda whatsoever. Then he saw a group of people, many people just going to a single venue– and he got curious. So, he followed them, and before he knew it, he was being ushered to a seat in this big, massive hall by some of the most well-dressed and well- mannered people.

By this time, he felt completely out of place. He had no idea what he attended.

Eventually, the Mass started. And there was a part of him that wanted to stay but another part wanted to leave. But that part of him that stayed eventually started participating.

He listened and by the end of the Talk, he shared with me, he was reduced to tears.

Because for a long while, he hadn’t felt the love of God in his life. And he knew right then, at that moment, that he wanted to fix his life.

He said something that I will never forget.

He said, “Brother, do you think that there’s a place for someone like me in your church and your community?”

And at that moment, you know, I thanked the Holy Spirit spoke through me because the way I answered him was like this:

“Brother, not only is there a place for someone like you in our church. But I truly believe that our church exists because of people like you. You’re the reason this community even exists.

Good News

Saint Augustine said this:

That’s the reason Jesus came here. He says: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor.”

How many of you here sometimes feel like you’re poor in spirit? How many of you sometimes feel you’re poor in your bank account? How many of you sometimes feel like you’re poor in your health life?

I’ve got Good News for you: Jesus is here for you.

He says He has been sent to proclaim that the captives will be released.

How many of you here sometimes struggle with sin? You feel imprisoned. You feel like you’ve been shackled and shamed by addictions. And you feel like you’re being held down.

I’ve got Good News for you: Jesus is for you.

And then He says that He has been sent so that the blind will see.

How many of you here sometimes feel that you don’t have the truth in your mind? It escapes you. And sometimes you’re confused. There are so many things going on in your head.

I’ve got Good News for you: Jesus came for you. Then He says He has been sent so that the oppressed will be set free. Hallelujah!

I’ve got Good Gospel News for you: If you came here today looking for good news, here’s the Good News: Jesus was sent for you. For you. For you. For you.

My message for you today is this: God’s Church is for you. Hallelujah! Let’s thank the Lord. Let’s pray:

Lord, we pray for Your blessing. This is a spiritual gathering and without Your Spirit, we are reduced to nothing. We don’t want that. So, we invite You to come and dwell in our midst. We open our eyes and our ears– and our heart most especially. So that You can speak to us. May every story that we hear, every word, bless us ultimately convert us and change us. Bless us, Father. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

One more time, Everybody, let’s sing to the Lord:

Thy Word is a Lamp unto my feet and a Light unto my path.


We have been talking about our series, TABLE

TALKS. And today is our last talk for this series. So, I thought what better way for us to learn than to listen? Like Fr. Paolo said earlier, we listen with the heart.

We have guests — I pre-interviewed them and I tell you, they already blessed me with their stories. We listen to not just 1 story but three stories about how lives have changed here at The  Feast.

Let’s welcome our guests:

Hello, Good Morning, Brothers and Sisters. My name is Gino. I’m a servant under Production and Admin.

I’m Reden Magdaong. I’m Diane, the renewed wife of Bro. Red.

Hi, Everyone. My name is Gilla.


We’re going to hear their story and we hope we’re going to extract wisdom and messages from the Lord. We’re going to start with Gino.

Gino, what led you to The Feast?

BRO. GINO: Hello again, Brothers

and Sisters. I’ve been a Feast attendee for more than a decade. I started attending in 2012, 2013.

My aunt and uncle invited our family to attend The Feast every Sunday here at PICC.

All of them are servants– my cousins and my siblings are servants in Production, Warmth (Ushers) Ministry.

At the start, I was just an attendee. I was just waiting for them to finish their service every Sunday. Eventually, it has become a habit for all of us to attend The Feast every Sunday.

And then, as the years went by, we got busier and busier. I was already in college.

I was studying at this Green University on Taft Avenue (De La Salle University).

One day, my mother told me that my father resigned from his job. So, then, I was the only one working in our family. Since we didn’t have the financial capacity to fulfill all our needs, I decided to be just a part-time student. Then eventually, I stopped studying because we needed money for our day-to-day expenses.

I lived with my mother, my younger sister, and my brother. And then I worked as a barista (coffeemaker) at this green coffee shop as well.

Working as a barista was a good experience for me. But the reality was that the pay was not enough for us. For one, we were renting our house.

So, I also decided to sell myself. I did it protected and unprotected.

Then, fast forward to the Coronavirus Disease Pandemic in 2020. We didn’t have public transportation (To prevent the spread of COVID, the authorities imposed a lockdown on gatherings, including public transportation). My assigned store was very far from our place. So, I decided to resign and look for a work-from-home setting. I became a Call Center agent. It was my second job. It was hard– the stress and all.

First, Burdens…

One time, in November 2020, I got very sick.

I thought it was COVID. I was so scared because we didn’t have money and at the time, there was no cure yet for COVID.

So, accompanied by my mother, I went to a public health center. And they said I had pneumonia. I took some medicines but they didn’t work for me.

They also found out that I had tuberculosis. They did some more tests…

I asked the lady doctor what was the result of the tests.

The doctor looked at me, then looked at my mother, then looked back at me, and said, “Is it okay to tell you? Your mother is here…”

I found out I tested positive with HIV. (HIV, or Human Immunodeficiency Virus, attacks the body’s immune system and can lead to AIDS or Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome; no effective cure; one would have it for life.)

They ran more tests and they found out I was already at the late stage of HIV. They already categorized me as Stage 4 AIDS.

I was mad at myself, at everyone. I don’t know… Even at the Lord.

But my mother hugged me right away when she found out that I was positive…

One morning, I felt a tightness in my chest because I had pneumonia and tuberculosis at the same time. I thought to myself, this was it. The Lord would already take me.

But to be honest, I was not praying at all because I was really mad at Him.

I was like, “Why did He let me be like this? Why did He allow this? I thought He would give the best for all of us…”

And then, as I felt that tightness, my mother hummed to me this song– it’s King of Kings by Hillsong.

I just closed my eyes. Then suddenly, amid the darkness, there was some light… And I saw a silhouette. And I really thought that was the Lord when I saw His hand — with a hole…

I opened my eyes and the tightness in my chest went away…

So, after that, I started to attend online Mass again. I started listening to Talks through the video Feast at Home.

And Then, Blessings

There were challenges still.

After I finished my tuberculosis medication, I became drug-resistant as my body developed a stronger strain. I was then taking medicines — 27 pieces per day.

And we didn’t have any more money. But I received donations from friends– from The Feast as well. They donated some to our family.

Then, fast-forward to September 2022.

While I was hearing online Mass, I learned there was a call for visual managers. At that time, the point of contact was a friend of mine. I immediately asked him if I could serve– even though my doctors did not allow me to go outside yet because I was still vulnerable. There was still the COVID-19 Pandemic.

At The Feast, we had a Light Group– where we would share our stories, our thoughts about the Talks. I shared my story because I wanted them to know my situation– I could not serve every Sunday.

I was shocked because they were not shocked. Ha-ha. They were not shocked because… I don’t know… They just accepted me for who I am. They did not ask any more questions.

Fast forward, three months after my first service, you know, the Lord actually answered my prayer.

December 2022, it was an advanced Christmas gift… my HIV was already undetectable. It was already suppressed. Although it was not yet cured– still, it was already suppressed. I just need to take the medications for a lifetime.

And to this day, I just continue serving the Lord. Because, you know, I thought people would not accept me for who I am, my orientation, my past.

The Feast is a Community where you are welcome. Amen.

To those who are watching or those who are here, if you feel that you are alone, I have good news for you: you found a spiritual community that will accept you with open arms just like the Lord.

So, if you’re really blessed, I encourage you to serve as well.

Sign up with our Ministries– a.m. or p.m., or in whatever Feast near you.

That’s my story.

BRO. AUDEE: Thank you, Gino.

You know, it’s not easy to share a story like this in front of thousands of people. When I was pre-interviewing Gino, my first question was, “Are you sure you want to share that?

Because we do have a stigma and I think I need to say this:

The stigma is, “Oops, HIV positive. I might get infected.”

HIV spreads only through sexual fluids. It cannot spread airborne or through saliva.

I researched this. It can spread through breast milk, blood transfusion.

So, we’re glad that Gino has now recovered. HIV is already undetected and it’s all because God gave a miracle in his life.

And what a testimony this man is! I love what he said: That The Feast is a gathering of broken people– whoever you are, whatever your orientation is, whatever your background is, whatever your struggle is…

One thing that I wish to say also is this: Do not be afraid to speak out loud. You don’t have to announce it, you know, to hundreds of people. But you can just pick small groups and then little by little, open your heart to them.

Because just like in Gino’s case– we’re hearing his story for the first time and it’s changing the way we look at how this Community is: That we don’t have judgments here. We don’t condemn people. We simply embrace them.

So, shout out to the Production Ministry over there for accepting this man for who he is, and for all that God has created him to be. Thank you, Gino!

BRO. AUDEE: Now, we have a couple here. Diane and Red, share your story with everybody…

BRO. RED MAGDAONG: We’re the Magdaong couple. We’ve already been Feasters for a year now. We started attending The Feast way back on December 17, 2022.

We were first-timers and Gilla here was the one who welcomed and entertained us.

We have three children and one grandchild. Actually, when I met Diane she already had two kids. We are blessed with one, so we have three children.

SIS. DIANE MAGDAONG: Our eldest son is already a chemical engineer. So, now, he already has his own family. And then our daughter is about to graduate from college. We hope next year. And our youngest son is in Grade 9.

I met Bro. Red in 2005, and after six months, we got married– a civil wedding. So, technically, we are 19 years married already.

After a few years of being together, I started reading a book, The Purpose Driven Life– because I was longing to know my mission, our mission. So, I started reading that book. I also started serving in our Charismatic Community in Makati.

I encouraged my husband Red to attend with me.

Praise God, after 2008, we got married in church through Kasalang Bayan –Mass Wedding– in our community.

Red had this dream of going abroad, So, three months after our church wedding, he was blessed right away. Red was able to go to Qatar to work.

BRO. AUDEE: That was quick. Six months, got married, eventually, Red moved. What happened after? I think this is when everybody needs to listen…

SIS. DIANE: Suddenly, after a year, Red disappeared.

Completely– including his financial support for the children and me.

He stopped communicating with me. But he did not change his phone number. It’s just he didn’t answer my calls.

The phone just kept ringing. I wondered if he was receiving my messages.

BRO. AUDEE: What was going through your mind when Red wasn’t communicating or answering you anymore? And how long was that– when you were struggling to call him?

SIS DIANE: During those years that I could not reach him I didn’t stop searching for my husband throughout the night on the Internet. I called OWWA (Overseas Workers Welfare Administration). I wrote a letter to the Department of Foreign Affairs asking them to help me look for my husband. Our phone bill became so big. I also tried to reach the Human Resources Department of his company but unfortunately to no avail.

After long, long years– about five years– finally, there was one person — a foreigner working in the same company where Red worked– who helped me. He gave me the phone number of the place where Red was staying.

BRO. AUDEE: After five years! I think we’ve got to hear this. What did Red say after you finally got to speak to him?

SIS DIANE: I believe Red got shocked. Because he knew my voice.

So, I told him, “Daddy, how are you?”

He said, “One day, I will go home and explain to you…”

It was just brief… I was left hanging… He just put down the phone.

BRO. AUDEE: Let’s go to Red. What was really happening throughout that span of five years that you were in Qatar? What were you doing? You were good at hiding.

BRO. RED: Actually, when we were still in the Philippines, we had fights– jealousy. I felt already suffocated in the relationship.

She imposed prohibitions so that I could no longer do what I used to do. In Qatar, I felt I got back my freedom. To tell you honestly, I faced temptations. That’s what happened in Qatar.

BRO. AUDEE: Thank you, Red. Again thank you for bravely sharing your story. So, there was somebody else involved.

And then what happened? Let’s fast-forward all the way to– well, you’re together now.

Something must have happened at some point. Maybe you can share that part of how you reconciled.

SIS DIANE: After we talked on the phone and he hung up, I continued serving the Lord through my Charismatic

Community. I tried my best to endure everything– to raise my kids alone. I just focused, Bro. Audee– I still didn’t want to accept that there was a third party involved. I thought, maybe he just had a problem…

That was the time I had this realization– deeply– about myself. I started to question myself: Who am I? How am I as a wife?

Because when I met Red, I was earning so much more than he did. So, since I had a higher income, I should be the one to prevail over our disagreements. I was boastful. I was a nagger. I was jealous. I was demanding. I realized that must be the reason he suddenly went away.

Three years after we talked, he came home. Finally, we met at his family’s home.

It’s like I was slapped with the reality that there was a third party. But I felt comfortable being with him. And we just hugged each other. Then we thanked each other for everything and we decided to separate amicably. I filed for annulment for both our civil and church weddings. Red was ignoring all the Tribunal letters from our church here, so, in a few years, the annulment of our church wedding was granted.

BRO. AUDEE: So, Red, in a way, you were also a ghost. You were hiding from the Tribunal.

But there is a good ending– Why the Lord allowed that to happen. Go ahead, Diane…

SIS DIANE: While we were waiting for the annulment of our civil wedding, life went on. Red went on with his relationship in Qatar. On the other hand, I focused on establishing my own company.

We were blessed. Red was successful in Qatar. Financially, and professionally, he was okay there.

Our eldest finished college. My other children were okay in their studies.

I got so busy, I had to leave my Charismatic community.

Sorry, Lord, I chose to focus on my business rather than to continue with my Charismatic community.

Then, the Pandemic came. I was in the Tourism business. We didn’t have work during the Pandemic. So, I built a restaurant to earn money. I invested everything I had in the restaurant.

Unfortunately, the highest I was flying during my time with Red, was the lowest I fell. I lost everything– money, investments, and all. I had just a few pesos left. And I was heavy with debt. I borrowed money to sustain my restaurant. I was devastated and depressed.

I knew then that Red was the only one who could help me. So, I texted Red in Qatar. I was surprised. Because within the 13 years he was in Qatar, I would call or text him just to say “Hi,” “Hello,” but he never replied. But when I sent him a message asking for help, in a matter of seconds, he suddenly replied.

BRO. AUDEE: Ha-ha! That’s amazing. I have a few comments on that later on.

But let’s go now to Red.

Once you received the message, what happened?

BRO. RED: Actually, I didn’t know what was happening with her at the time.

But I also went through trials. I asked the Lord, despite all my gains earlier– good salary, career– I felt something was still lacking.

I said, “Lord, what is really my purpose?”

And the answer came into my mind, “Go back to Diane.” So, when she sent me the message, I replied because

I already wanted to fix things. So, we had communication.

I decided to go on a vacation to the Philippines. I saw her situation. I used everything I had to help her. And I didn’t go back to Qatar any more.

I chose her over my career. That was the Lord’s purpose for me. What’s the use of lots of money if I didn’t have my family with me? So, I gave up my career, stayed with her, so that we could go back to our beginning, give everything to her — for the Lord.

BRO. AUDEE: Tell everybody what is the status of your Tribunal application.

SIS. DIANE: Actually, we’re planning to have our union again in church. So, this is the first time where, in the Philippines, a wedding was annulled and the couple will wed again.

BRO. AUDEE: They don’t know what to do. The priests

are wondering…They are taking time. Because they don’t know how the process is. Had an annulment, then wanted to wed again…

But, we praise God that the Lord has brought them to this place where they have reconciled and they’ve forgiven each other.

Let me just mention, to close their story: You heard it in their own words. What they said was beautiful. Because the stereotype about marital problems: “Ah, the husband was unfaithful.” Or, “The wife was not faithful.” We have somebody we point fingers to.

But we never know that in a marriage, it takes two to tango.

So, before you judge the person, you find out first the story of the other person.

And Diane said it herself. She felt like there was a point in her life when she was treating Red as dirt, as garbage. She was boastful because she was the earner, she had the money. She treated Red as somebody who was way below her level.

And that really humbled me. That the Lord humbled her first, and the Lord humbled Red as well. So, in a way, separately, the Lord was working on them until such time– 13 years, no communication. And yet one text, after 13 years, Red replied. That’s how the Lord works sometimes. Sometimes quick. Sometimes takes too long. But when the Lord replies, He replies in a miracle.

So, praise God! Thank you, Diane. Thank you, Red.

BRO. AUDEE: We don’t want to end without hearing the story of this lovely lady, Gilla, who will bless us with her final conversion story.

Go ahead, Gilla.

SIS. GILLA: Hi, Everyone.

My name is Gilla. I am 28 years old.

So, just a brief background about myself.

My dad died when I was 12 years old. Growing up,

I always joined pageants. I became an actress when I was young. I modeled in commercials.

So, looking like confident. But deep inside, I didn’t really like myself. I had low self- worth to the point that when my dad died, I started getting into a relationship. Take note, I was 12 years old at that time.

About my family, I love my mom. She raised me and my brother. It’s just that we didn’t have deep relationship. So, I could not just open up. I could not tell what

I was feeling. Perhaps, because they were brought up that way. They also had traumas that were also unresolved. So, I resorted to getting in and out of relationships– since I was 12 years old.

BRO. AUDEE: Thank you, Gilla. You shared with me that you joined LLR (Love Life Retreat) right? Can you tell us about that?

SIS. GILLA: Certainly. Before I joined LLR, though, I was heartbroken. So, that guy, he was rich and I had a glimpse of having a rich life. So, I had that desire: I wanted to be rich! So, what did I do? I typed on the Google search bar: How To Be Rich.

Google showed me a video of a man saying, “Do you want to be rich? Do you want this? Do you want that?”

BRO. AUDEE: Is the man here, in this venue?

SIS. GILLA: I think so.

BRO. AUDEE: Okay. Is he sitting in front– wearing blue?

SIS. GILLA: I think so. Ha-Ha!

So, I was replying to the man, “Yes! Yes! I want to be rich! I want! I want!”

And the man said: “Then join Truly Rich Club!” (A financial literacy advocacy with spiritual nourishment founded by Bro. Bo Sanchez)

BRO. AUDEE: Shameless plug, ha.

SIS. GILLA: Ha-ha!

SIS. GILLA: At that time, I was still studying. So, I had no money.

And I was like, “Okay, one day, I will join Truly Rich Club…

I graduated from college. I worked. My first pay, I joined Truly Rich Club. So, every single day, driving to my office, going back home, I just listened to him ( to his radio broadcast).

And I just felt like, “Why is it like this? Like I am getting to be a good girl…” My mindset was changing…

BRO. AUDEE: He has that effect on all of us. It’s not just you.

SIS. GILLA: Why, I was getting less irritable.

Like when there’s heavy traffic on the road. Before, I was like “Grrr. It’s traffic!” Road rage!

Now, all of a sudden, “Oh, it’s traffic! I can listen to him more!”

But at every end of those powerful talks, he would always say, “ If you want more nourishment, go to The Feast.

BRO. AUDEE: So, you went to The Feast. What happened?

SIS. GILLA: But I didn’t go to The Feast right away, Bro. Audee.

I was living a good life. I felt like I was living a good life… I had a car, I had a good-paying job. I had a boyfriend at that time.

So, I should be happy, right? I should feel fulfilled. Hello, I could buy anything I wanted. Although I had some problems in my family which I really didn’t know how to address.

And then, one day, I just felt so empty. Like something was missing…

I always told myself, “Why are you feeling this way–even as you have everything you want? You’re not yet rich. But hey, you’re living a good life.”

So, I really hit rock bottom, Bro. Audee. That time, I was just crying. Depression wasn’t really not yet an open topic at that time. Like, it was taboo if you’d say you’re depressed.

I had ideas… Should I go to a psychologist or a psychiatrist? I couldn’t open up to anyone. Not even to my friends. Even my boyfriend at that time, he didn’t know what to do anymore.

He was like, “What’s happening to you?”

I really wanted something — I didn’t know what that was… Then, all of a sudden, The Feast!

SIS. GILLA: I was at the Manila Hotel. Very random. And I was crying, I was crying.

Just a usual Sunday I would just cry– like it had become normal that everything was dark.

And then, I saw people hugging each other.

Then I told myself, “Why are they happy and I’m not? What do they have that I don’t have?

Then suddenly, a woman in a white polo and a scarf said, “We’re going to The Feast!” And I was like, “Huh, this is The Feast?”

“Yeah, this is The Feast! But it’s already done here. You can come next week to the PICC.”*

So, I said, “Huh?!” Isn’t it…I thought I had a good life…

So, I said, “God, okay, You’re there. I would listen to power talks…But I’m okay.”

But then God met me where I was… That’s when I started attending The Feast. That was the year 2017. And then, Bro. Audee, I brought my boyfriend at that time.

I told him, “Let’s go to The Feast.”

So, the first time, it was at the PICC p.m. session with Bro. Alvin Barcelona as the preacher. I was crying, crying. I didn’t know why.

And then I told my boyfriend, “You know, I will stay here forever. This is what I was looking for.”

And he was like, “What are you saying? I couldn’t understand.”

But it just felt right. It just felt like this was what I was looking for. I really don’t know what that was. But this was what I was looking for.

Then my boyfriend and I, we broke up. But there was someone– I don’t know, ladies, if you can relate– there was someone who wanted to court me. But he didn’t want a relationship that was labeled– like MU. (Mutual Understanding). I was thirsty for love, and so, I just said, “Yes.”

I invited him here too. We would attend every Sunday. But then one day, he broke my heart. That was the time I attended the Love Life Retreat. And I really thought I’d find the love life — a boyfriend again– because I was heartbroken, right?

All I knew at that time was to get in and out of relationships.

But little did I know that I would find Him — Someone who loves me so much.

* The Feast is held regularly every Sunday at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in the Manila Bay Area– so it’s called Feast Bay Area. But there was a time when PICC was not available for our gathering. So, we held

The Feast at the nearby Manila Hotel. We went back to PICC when it was already available for our gathering.

BRO. AUDEE: And then something happened. We’ll just do this briefly because this is important as well. Let’s go to the part where you took a job that required you to be out of the country?

Be a seafarer?

And I think this is when your conversion happened. Because a lot of people are thinking, “Okay, you found Jesus. Now you have a relationship with Him…” But then… what happened next?

SIS. GILLA: So, I had to leave the country because my family wanted me to work on board a ship. Because that was the only way that they thought I’d have a good life.

At first, I didn’t want to do it– because I already found this Community.

In the interview for the job, I was asked, “What are you going to miss here in the Philippines?”

So, I told them, “The Feast.” They asked, “Not your family?”

No. Because this is where I felt loved. This is where I felt accepted. I just don’t know… I couldn’t explain. I just felt like, “Why are they smiling at me? They don’t even know me. Why are they hugging me? “

So, I was far away from the Community, I had no support system.

And that’s true. Temptations are everywhere, all over the place, when you are far away from your loved ones…

What I was doing here–I was living a promiscuous life before going on board the ship– it doubled. Because I was really looking for someone to take care of me, to support me.

So, I got into some relationships — again. And the worst was, I was so desperate to find that love, that I got into a relationship with someone who was also in a relationship. And

I really saw myself as not worthy– to the point that I entered that kind of relationship.

Then the Pandemic happened. So, one day, we were told we could not dock in that port in Fiji. And this was when it hit me: Shucks, the Pandemic was real!

Because on board the ship, we were like, it’s just a flu, it will go away. But the moment it looked like already the end of the world, I really felt lost, I was just crying.

There it was again. I was crying and crying.

SIS. GILLA: At the Love Life Retreat, I met a friend. He gave me a copy of the Didache

(a booklet on Daily Bible Reflections for Catholics).

I wasn’t reading it. Because I was focused on my life on board the ship.

But one day, I read that Didache. And I had this small Bible. I came across this verse, which was also the verse of my LLR batch, Jeremiah 29:11:

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

So, you can imagine… I was crying, crying, I felt so hopeless. And then one day, I read this verse– and suddenly,  I had this peace.

I really didn’t know where it came from. But I knew that He had plans for me. That was the time when I started reading the Didache every single day.

Reading the Word and writing journals.

So, I got quarantined for 30 days… And it is true. When you’re all alone in a room, all your inner demons will come out. So, imagine I had to deal with myself. I could not deal with myself, I needed someone to be with me, to take care of me because

I didn’t like myself.

That day, that particular day, I was reading the Word. And I was just pouring my heart into the journal. Suddenly, I wrote down all of my sins. This time, no filter.

I spoke to God with all of my heart, telling Him all the things I had done– the relationships I’d been through. all the things that we did.

Then I said, “Sorry, Lord.” And you know what?

I just felt so loved at that time. He kept on telling me: “I love you–still.” So, I knelt. I repented. I said Sorry. And then at the end of my journal,

I said: I have decided to follow Jesus. No turning back.

BRO. AUDEE: Amazing. What is your relationship status now?

In the past, you always said, “Don’t leave.”

You didn’t want to break off with people. Now, what is your perspective on relationships?

SIS. GILLA: Before, I was really afraid of commitment. Chaotic, right? But I’d get into relationships. Yeah…

Right now, I have a relationship with Jesus.

All this time, He was just waiting for me. He was just there,

very patient. He never forced me. He just loved me for who I am.

He will just allow you to do your thing until one day you’re sick of it, you’re sick of all the sins, you’re sick of doing those bad habits.

Just right now, I have a relationship with Jesus.

And it’s really true. If you seek first the Kingdom of God, everything else shall be added unto you. Yes!

BRO. AUDEE: Gilla wanted to become rich.

How many of you want to be rich? Raise your hand.

She wanted to be truly rich.

But the real definition of what truly rich is it’s a relationship with the Lord.

Let’s clap our hands for all our sharers. Thank you so much for your bravery, your confidence, and for sharing your story. Thank you. Thank you

BRO. AUDEE: This is a spiritual event. When you come here every Sunday, something happens. It’s not just because you enjoy the Worship, you enjoy the Talks.

But the first miracle that happens– listen to me– it doesn’t happen during the Worship. It doesn’t happen during the Talk. It happens during the Holy Eucharist.

I want you to watch this video (available on

You don’t see it only with your physical eye. But when you close your eyes and you see with your eyes of faith, you know that something is

happening whenever you’re here. Whenever you gather in His Name, God is there. And the angels come, and miracles happen.

And He ministers to all of us. And today we get to partake in that every week when you come here. When you go through the doors, Jesus is there. When you sit down on your chair Jesus sits with you, He prays with you.

This is a spiritual event. It’s not my event. It’s not Brother Bo’s event. It’s God’s event.

So, we celebrate that every Sunday. And today, we take that privilege of being in His Presence again. To respond to His grace today.

Everybody, lift your hands as we worship:

Father Almighty, Thank You so much for showing your Presence today. For making us feel your love. And how miracles abound in this place. Today, we park everything in our life and we simply focus and fix our eyes on You. We want to be here, Lord. Thank You for welcoming us back home. We run to You like children running back to our Father.

Let’s sing to the Lord …

BRO. AUDEE: Matthew 18-19 says whenever two or three agree… In ancient Greek, the word agree simply means to symphonize, to harmonize.

Bro. Audee, does that mean when we come together to harmonize, do we need to sing all in the same good tune? No. Because I know some of you can’t even sing the tune. You don’t even know the lyrics, sometimes.

You don’t even know the beat, sometimes. What Jesus is saying is we need to have our hearts in tune. And when that happens here’s the crazy part…The passage says for where two or three come together in my name, I am there with them.

Friends, listen to this: Jesus says it doesn’t have to be a large gathering. He says, two or three are enough. I know that a lot of us like big sizes, big following, big congregation, big audiences. But to Jesus, listen to this: the numbers don’t matter. It doesn’t matter to Jesus how big the congregation is. Because to Jesus, the size is not essential. The rank of the people is not essential. The place where you are is not essential. The time of the day is not essential. Because to Jesus, what’s only essential is that you gather in His Name. And when you gather in His Name, He comes and joins you.

He shows up. And miracles happen. Amen.

So, I want you to sing this song as your prayer. That

you’re running to the Father.

No more hiding. No more shame.

This story was first published in the Feast Family Online News Magazine

Published by THE FEAST (March 3, 2024)


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