April 2008 Philippines Pastors’ Conference
with Pastor Tom Crouse
In April of 2008, a pastors’ conference was held in Manila, Philippines sponsored by Christian Growth Ministries (CGM) and Action International Ministries (ACTION). Two hundred fifty-one pastors attended, instead of the expected one hundred and fifty. By God’s grace, all were able to attend, even though it was an overflow capacity for the building, and extremely hot!
The subject of the day was “Integrity in Ministry.” In four sessions Pastor Tom Crouse covered personal integrity, biblical integrity, integrity as a shepherd, and integrity with one’s perspective of life. A noteworthy moment was in the session on biblical integrity. He spoke on the need and responsibility of pastors to get the Gospel right for their churches, to be careful who they follow, and what books they read. Pastor Crouse stated there were well known people that many in the church today were following that were heretics because of their false preaching and teaching. When he mentioned a few names, there were audible gasps from about 30 of the attendees. They had never heard or considered such a thing.
After the conference Pastor Crouse had a pastor tell him that he was going to reconsider his view of these false teachers, in particular one whose books were in his library. Tom told him to throw them away or use them to brace up furniture. This pastor said he would get rid of them and thanked Tom for having come for the conference. Other pastors said similar things and made it clear how important the conference was for them and what they had learned.
People came to the conference from all around Manila. Some came from as far away as six hours. One couple rode a bus at three in the morning and traveled six hours to be there. Truly humbling to think of their sacrifice, it was a privilege to give out some of Pastor Crouse’s books, as well as other books and materials. Praise God for allowing the conference speakers to be used in the lives of those who have sacrificed so much!
These conferences are definitely needed! The heretics of our day, who come via television, books and at times in person, taint and corrupt the Gospel message. It is well worth the money churches put out to send solid pastors to speak to Christian brothers around the world who shepherd God’s people!