The 10th of May is commonly remembered by the members of the Church because of its significance in the Church’s history as the birthday of Bro. Felix Manalo, who we believe was commissioned by God as His last messenger in these last days.
Every year, the Church Administration commemorates this day by remembering the humble beginnings of the Church of Christ and how important it is to emulate the lives of the former leaders of God’s nation. In the past years, around this time, the lessons and activities of the church would revolve around the value of God’s commissioning of His messenger during our time and the importance of adhering to the teachings and doctrines taught by the Last Messenger solely based on the Bible. The brethren all over the world were admonished, not to place their faith on Bro. Felix Y. Manalo or on any man as he himself would always profess, rather, to place our trust in the Bible or God’s words so that none of us would ever fall into idolatry.
Even the Ministers were always reminded of our solemn oath in the Ministry, to always love God and Christ above anything and anyone, to always think of the brethren’s sake on top of our own, to always care for the flock the way Christ did as best example of a model Shepherd. There are two kinds of Ministers described by our Lord Jesus Christ. One is a Good Shepherd who listens to Christ’s voice, while the other one is a Hired Shepherd who works only for money and doesn’t truly care for the sheep.
“11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd sacrifices his life for the sheep. 12 A hired hand will run when he sees a wolf coming. He will abandon the sheep because they don’t belong to him and he isn’t their shepherd. And so the wolf attacks them and scatters the flock. 13 The hired hand runs away because he’s working only for the money and doesn’t really care about the sheep. ” ~ John 10:11-13 New Living Translation (NLT)
This article is about one such Good Shepherd. One of the oldest living Ministers during the time of Bro. Felix Y. Manalo, Bro. Eraño G. Manalo and even during the time of Eduardo V. Manalo. He is Bro. Jesse Macaspac, married to the late Sis. Avelina Nabong Macaspac.
He served his duties as a Minister of the Gospel for 65 continuous years and was a recipient of a medal for Veteran Ministers during the Centennial of the Messenger.
Before he was assigned to the US, he used to be a Division Treasurer, then a District Minister. He was instrumental in establishing the 3rd and 4th locales of the Church outside of the Philippines.
Among his pioneering locales as a Minister were Los Angeles and San Diego in 1970, Fresno in 1973, Sacramento in 1975 and Lemoore in 1980.
Because of his dedication to his duties as Minister, Bro. Eraño G. Manalo and his family have been very fond and close to Bro. Jesse and his family.
Being a pioneer Minister who was dedicatedly trained by Bro. Felix Manalo and Bro. Eraño G. Manalo themselves during their time, Bro. Jesse is definitely a seasoned Minister. He worked tirelessly in the Ministry and did everything a good shepherd would do for the sake of the flock. And when Bro. Eraño G. Manalo passed away and was replaced by Eduardo V. Manalo, Bro. Jesse, like any good soldier of God, obeyed and supported EVM and fulfilled his duties to God. But when the time came when discrepancies in doctrinal practices began to creep inside the Church thru the Ministry that emanated from the upper echelon of the Church Administration, Bro. Jesse could not keep silent and respectfully sought for answers. Because of this, he became an item in the EVM watchlist and was interrogated 3 years ago along with a threat that he will be suspended from his duties as a Minister and was required to make an affidavit. Nonetheless, he complied but was not afraid to stand his ground and declared his love and respect for ALL members of Bro. Felix Y. Manalo’s family.
And when he learned that Eduardo V. Manalo expelled his own mother and siblings, he did not hesitate to write to EVM to beseech him to have the humility and compassion of a true servant of God, just like Moses who begged God to forgive his siblings who has turned against him, and just like Joseph who had immense power over all of Egypt, thereby giving him the ability to take vengeance against his 10 brothers and punish them for all that they have done against him, yet, he had mercy on them and forgave them along with the promise of blessings and properity. It was Bro. Jesse’s hope that EVM would also remember his oath and duty to God to be a Good Shepherd, not only to the flock but to his own household as well. He became the voice of truth and reason when he told EVM that “the more you try to prevent the brethren from loving Sister Tenny, Bro. Angel and Bro. Marco, the love of the brethren for them will all the more intensify, while all the more increasing the brethren’s fear of you (EVM).”
But Bro. Jesse’s words were ignored and the persecution against the Family of Bro. Eraño G. Manalo ensued. When the expulsion letter for Sis. Tenny, Bro. Angel and Bro. Marco was read, the daughter of Bro. Jesse and Sis. Avelina was among those who walked out of the chapel. She was called for interrogation and later on, expelled along with her whole family. The interrogation was witnessed by Bro. Paterno See (District Minister) along with the family of Bro. Jesse Macaspac.
Sis. Marla Macaspac-Vina is the wife of Bro. Noel Vina, the son of Sis. Aida Vina, sister of Sis. Tenny Manalo. Bro. Noel is the cousin of Bro. Angel and Bro. Marco, making Marla a part of the Manalo Family.
And because of this familial association, the EVM Administration had zero tolerance and was just itching to expel her and her family, including the two innocent children who knew nothing of what’s happening but suffered the wrath of a heartless and vindictive Executive Minister. The two children with their innocence, had this to ask their beloved uncle Eduardo Manalo.
One of the hardest things a parent can experience is to witness the persecution and unjust expulsion of their own children. Bro. Randy Macaspac, the brother of Sis. Marla, was the one who read her expulsion circular during the worship service he officiated. Bro. Jesse wrote to EVM about it but eventually fell on deaf ears.
This act of cruelty was the straw that broke the camel’s back for Sis. Marla’s mother, Sis. Avelina and it broke her heart. This was the start of Sis. Avelina’s rapid decline in health. She lost so much weight and her health eventually deteriorated. Only the love and care of an endearing husband, their children and the love of God sustained her.
And when it was the children’s turn to care for their parents as commanded none other by our Lord God, EVM would not allow it for he himself is guilty of forsaking his own mother. So instead of allowing Bro. Randy Macaspac who was a Minister to stay with his ailing parents especially since the doctor informed them that their mother only had 6 months to live, he ordered Bro. Randy and his family to leave them to return to the Philippines thereby losing Sis. Avelina’s primary caregiver. And when Bro. Randy chose to follow God’s commandment instead of man to care for his parents, he was suspended from his duties as a Minister.
The series of persecution against the whole family of Bro. Jesse Macaspac proved to be too much to bear for Sis. Avelina. She passed away with a broken heart caused by a man with no heart.
And when that was not enough, the rest of Bro. Jesse’s family were summarily expelled for attending a wedding of a family member which was not officiated inside the church nor at a church chapel, but with no reason, they were expelled anyway.
And despite all of these trials and tribulations, Bro. Jesse held firmly to his faith and his duties when finally when made to make a choice, HE STOOD FIRMLY AND COURAGEOUSLY TO BE ONE WITH GOD AND CHRIST THAN TO ANY MAN.
Last April 24, 2018, Bro. Jesse Macaspac was expelled by the vindictive church administration of Eduardo V. Manalo and was taken out from his pastoral house, but he has no regrets because he knows he did nothing wrong in following God and refusing to follow a mere man-acting-like-god.
This is a copy of Bro. jesse’s letter sent to more than 10,000 brethren all over the world thru mail and email so that they too may know the truth and have the courage to stand up for what is right and righteous in the sight of God.
Bro. Jesse Macaspac can no longer be silent so he told the church as instructed in the Bible.
It is our fervent hope that many more TRUE Ministers will finally stand up and speak out for the TRUTH and do what is RIGHT in obedience to God.
May God help us all.
Watch Bro. Jesse’s Declaration.
~ Antonio Ramirez Ebangelista
“They tried to bury us…they didn’t know we were seeds.”
“Unlike you, I don’t have power or money, but what I do have is a very particular set of skills, skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you tell the truth now, that’ll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don’t, I will look for you, I will find you, and I will expose you.” – A.E.
Philippine Daily Inquirer Article: “Antonio Ebangelista writes Philippine Daily Inquirer, Warns Iglesia Elders”
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