Members from the various islands of the Visayas were joined by guests from Australia and the United Kingdom in a new location, Visayas State University (VSU), a premier educational and research institution located in Baybay City at the western side of the Leyte Island.
Flanked by the majestic view of Mount Pangasugan to the east and the breathtaking sunsets by the Camotes Sea to the west, the university provided a wonderful place where Feastgoers experienced a foretaste of God’s coming Kingdom in this new, nature-inspired setting. The highest total attendance during the daily services reached 147.
Deer feeding was a highlight for both young and old, who had the chance to come up close with a local deer species being bred as part of the university’s conservation efforts.
Inspiring messages, beautiful special music and wonderful hymns were among the regular spiritual attractions joyfully shared by everyone which was centered on the theme “Race to Your Crown.”
Brethren were inspired by recorded messages which talked about peace and the transformation that is going to happen to the world at the establishment of God’s Kingdom given by Rick Shabi and David Dobson respectively.
Adding to the thrill and enjoyment were the scheduled activities including the fellowship night, a museum tour for the kids and the family day at the VSU beach which offered brethren a serene opportunity to witness the mesmerizing sunset—an attraction which the university is famous for. Everyone enjoyed the activities that helped enrich bonds between family members and brethren from each of the eight congregations scattered across the different islands of the Visayas.
On the third day of the Feast, brethren from every congregation showcased dance performances and songs. On the fourth day, we held a women’s enrichment meeting in which women, led by the elders’ wives, had the chance to openly discuss important aspects of their role as helpers in God’s Church.
Local Church leaders and the men in God’s Church then had a chance to have a dinner together during the men’s social held during the evening of the fourth day.
The second half of the Feast was accentuated by the Digyo Island tours where members who signed-up got the chance to enjoy the beautiful white sand and crystal-clear waters of “Cuatro Islas,” a small island group and a popular tourist destination which is part of the town of Inopacan in the southwestern part of Leyte.
As the Feast came to a close, brethren were served a sumptuous meal during the appreciation dinner on the seventh day.
With the guidance, inspiration and protection of the Great God Almighty and the active participation of volunteers and committees, the Feast of Tabernacles and the Eighth Day celebration this year was a great success!