Living in the 21st Century the term missionary is one which often doesn’t crop up in conversation, but what is a missionary and do they still exist?
Second generation missionaries Ruth and Andrew Newlove, originally from Teesside, live in a small barangay called Bacnotan in the Philipines with their four young children.
Situated eight hours away from the capital Manila; life is very different for them in comparison to their lives when they were in England.
Andrew comes from a family of missionaries and was raised in this part of the Philippines for 15 years.
He learnt the language and speaks both the local and national dialogs, Ilocano and Tagalog.
He said: “Often you can hear people talking about you and because you’re white no one thinks you can understand but in fact you know every word they’re saying.”
“I often use that to my advantage when speaking to groups of people here.
“No one wants to listen to western missionaries, but when they find out you can speak their language this really grabs their attention.”
After living in the Philippines for five years as a family, the Newloves work together with the heart of their community as leaders of the New Vision Church alongside Pastor Raul Belarmino.
Ruth said: “Our vision for this area is imparting a heart of missions and encouraging people to become missionaries to their own people and out into other nations.”
Ruth Newlove, who comes from Middlesbrough, is the daughter of Martin Ruddick, Pastor and leader of Amazing! Grace Church on Teesside.
Having such a strong link with the church, Amazing! Grace sent a team of ladies over last May to experience life as a modern day missionary alongside the Newlove family.
Margaret Ruddick, Santa Putz, Sharon Scott, Lora Rickters and myself were all on that team and were all a part of running Band of Sisters Women’s Conference. See the link below to find out more: