A Purpose Driven Life orientation, derived from Rick Warren’s Purpose Driven Life bestselling book, was conducted recently for the first time in history in the province of Tawi-Tawi, the birthplace of Islam in the Philippines.
Islam was introduced into the Philippines in 1384 or 600 years earlier than that of Evangelical Christians.
The first mosque in Tawi-Tawi, then become the cradle of Philippine Islam that spread to other provinces in Mindanao then later to Visayas and Luzon regions.
But then the Evangelical Gospel arrived in the Philippines during the late 19th century and the early 20th century. Protestant denominations were introduced mostly by American missionaries at that time, although some were founded locally. The country has the world’s 13th-largest Protestant population with almost 9 million adherents, about 10 percent of the national population.
The purpose of the seminar was to educate students and teachers about the true purpose of life and how God’s children can live a life that is according to the desires of God’s purpose.
The province of Tawi-Tawi has a population of 500,000 and 90% of it are Islamic faithful’s.
Both teachers and student leaders attended the seminar which was was organized by Christian Outreach Ministry (COM) and Peace Builders Training Group, an organization teaching Sunday school classes for Badjao children, who are from a Moslem tribe in the province. COM was also working with Open Doors, a international mission organization.
Youth leaders, who are mostly honor students and academic scholars, commented that they have been waiting for Purpose Driven Life seminars to be conducted in their province, which is the province the farthest and southernmost province of the Philippines. It is 1,300 kilometers (807 miles) away from the Central government. The province is stricken with poverty because government services are not able to reach this area.
But now, thanks to this seminar, many of have found a new purpose in life – though Jesus Christ.
Noel Tarrazona is a permanent resident of Canada but is presently in the Philippines doing humanitarian work. He can be reached at email address: firstname.lastname@example.org