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Issue #197

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Friends Under the Bridge

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TMS Alumnus Sean Ransom (M.Div '02) is a missionary with Reach Global (Formerly called the Evangelical Free Church of America International Mission). He currently lives in Manila, Philippines, with his wife Jessica and their five children. Sean's vision is to establish a training center that will specialize in expository preaching and church planting.  In early March, during the Shepherd's Conference held at Grace Community Church, he made a presentation before the board of the Master's Academy. The board formally voted and accepted the training ministry in the Philippines as a TMI school.

Below are some excerpts from his story posted on his blog about his discovery of sixteen families living in a bridge that crosses the Marikina River -

My travels through Manila often take me over a bride that crosses the Marikina River. It was on this route, (which has become one of my favorite shortcuts) that I noticed a man sitting on the bridge's railing. I didn't think much of it and continued on my way. On another day shortly after that I noticed him there again and I began to look for him whenever I crossed over that bridge. He was always there, just sitting in the same place. No matter what time of day, morning or night, he was always there. When I looked a little closer I noticed that he has a normal man's torso, but that his legs were very small and out of proportion with the rest of his body. Then I realized that he was always there because he lives there, in a crack between the bridge and the wall next to it....

...later, I learned that there were sixteen families living in these cracks on both sides of the bridge and some were living under parts of it. There were whole families living there and some of them were made up of three generations (or more); Grandparents, parents, and grandchildren. Well, my just passing by went on for a month or two, as I looked for the man on the bridge. I would wonder, "How does he get around? I really don't think he can . . . so where does he get his food from? Maybe he fishes from the river." Then I thought, "Since he probably can't move around much, he probably can't go to church. I wonder if he knows the Lord?" As I continually passed him by, I told myself that I need to stop by and talk with this guy. I was acting like the men who passed by the injured man laying in the road in the story of "The good Samaritan." My conscience was growing heavy as I continued to pass by this guy in my comfortable air-conditioned car; sometimes eating a snack and listening to my stereo. Finally, at Christmas time, I stopped my van in front of him on the bridge, rolled down my window and introduced myself to him. His eyes brightened and he had a big smile on his face as he enthusiastically said, "Hello Sir." I said, "Hi, I'm Sean, what's your name?" He told me that his name is Robert....

 

Robert is now a believer and helping to lead worship at Bible studies held for those families at the bridge. Sean has since obtained a wheelchair for him.  To read the complete story of Robert and the other families of the bridge, you can visit www.ransomreport.com.  Please join us in continuing to pray for Sean and his ministry in the Phillipines.

Together for the Gospel,

Bob's signature

Bob White
Vice President
Development and Operations
The Master’s Seminary

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