Monday, November 10, 2008

Beginning of Adventism in the Philippines

Maria Panis and Leon Z. Roda with the first 3 of five children, L-R, Eduardo, Elizabeth and Mercedes

[FANDiscussion - Oct 23, 2008]

A little clarification. Alfonso P. Roda was my brother. Antonino Zumel Roda was our uncle, and proud of it. The third of the three pastor brothers was Alvaro. Our father was Leon Zumel Roda, the oldest of the three. He was a student in Manila when at the age of 16 yrs. he and a Manilan named Bibiano Panis opened the door for Elder L. V. Finster to bring the good tidings of the gospel to my mother's family in Sta. Ana, Manila [1909]. So, you see, the Mother Roda you knew in Philippine Union College, Baisa, was a Taga-Maynila. At age 19 yrs. my mother married the 21 yr. old Leon. At age 23 yrs. my father, along with my uncle Bibiano Panis and Emilio Manalaysay, was ordained to the gospel Ministry in 1916; they were the first Seventh-day Adventist nationals to be ordained in the Philippines.

I grew up in the Manila region, particularly Pasay and Baisa. I did learn Ilocano when our grandfather invited our family to stay with him in Sarrat, a suburb of Laoag City, for one year at the age of 4-5 yrs. because of the recent passing away of my father. [Leon died in 1925, when Arturo, the youngest of his 5 children, was only 2 years old.] When we came back to Pasay I quickly forgot to speak the language, although I can still understand sufficiently, so that, hindi niyo ako maipagbibili.

Alfonso and I and our three other siblings were 2nd generation Adventists.

Standing, L-R: Arturo, Eduardo, Alfonso; seated with their mother Maria Panis-Roda, center, were Elizabeth, L, and Mercedes, R.[Eduardo, the eldest of Maria's children, weakened by disease died within a couple of weeks prior to the liberation of Manila by Allied forces during WW2.]

Our family [the Leon branch] is now in its fourth generation; but, the Alvaro branch is now in its 5th generation.

Three generations of the Maria Panis and Leon Z. Roda family.

Maxima de la Cruz and Alvaro Z. Roda with the first 3 of ten children, L-R, Rebecca, Esther and David.

We just celebrated our Roda family reunion in August [held in San Diego, CA] with an attendance of 110 out of a present family tree count of about 200. Our theme was Rehearsal for Heaven. I have been crowned by some members of the family as their Living Patriarch. I turned 85 yrs. in my last BD. Every opportunity I have, I like to witness for my Savior, Jesus Christ.

Happy Sabbath, and God bless you all.

Mountain View Ave, Loma Linda, CA

Oct 24, 2008

Mar here to Dr. Roda:

I praise the Lord for having the Roda clan in His family. May your tribe continue to increase! I heard the name Leon Z Roda as one of those who introduced the gospel in Amarao. The first church building was built there as a result of the ministry of the late Leon Z Roda and company. The church was rebuilt about nine years ago with the help of the son of the late Elder [Roy] Hay.

Your brother Alfonso spoke fluent Ilocano. I was privileged to talk with him first hand regarding the issue of the Sanctuary doctrine after he came back from a series of meetings in Maryland. Nagsalita pa siya ng Ilocano dahil batid niya na bagong salta lang ako sa PUC at nagugulumihanan ako sa sigalot na likha ni Desmond Ford. He was so nice to explain to me the position of Dr. Ford which as rejected by the GC administrators and theologians because of several reasons.

What I am saying is that you have indeed touched the lives of many people in many ways. I shall continue to pray that you will succeed in your desire to witness for our Savior Jesus Christ in spite of your age. But at first glance, I thought you were only 68 or 69 years old. Belated happy birthday. Naimbag a Sabado.

Mar Velasco

On Fri, 24 Oct 2008 11:42:59 -0400 writes:
Mar here to Dr. Roda;

Doc, all the while I thought you were brothers with Dr. Alfonso and Dr. Antonino Roda. [The late Pastor Antonino Zumel Roda received a doctorate honoris causa from Southwestern University in Cebu during a Commencement at which time he addressed the graduates as their keynote speaker.] I had the pleasure to meet them when I was very new in the faith. I was first acquainted with Dr. Antonino Roda, a wonderful man of God and well known all throughout Northern Luzon Mission. The first time I heard him speak was in a camp meeting. He spoke with eloquence and I always loved to hear his deep Bacarra like voice. He could speak well in Ilocano, and also Visayan. I was always delighted and encouraged by his sermons to love our Lord Jesus. His "More Than That" story is always treasured in my heart.

Thank you for the nice words for my family. May the Lord continue to bless you and your family.

Mar Velasco

Thu, 23 Oct 2008 10:57 pm
ART RODA here to MAR

It was good meeting you. Now I can put a face on your mails. I know I have met you before, but not being formally introduced I could not put things together. I have long wanted to meet you, because I so admired your children. You have such lively Christian family; yes, that's right, lively as well as lovely. Continue to participate in the FAN discussions. I really do not mind the disagreements, as long as we learn to listen to each other. And I repeat this call to all other participants. We all should learn to welcome the fellowship of believers in different aspects of our day to day lives, and, that includes our continuing growth in grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. In due time I shall address this
theme [of the Atonement] more extensively. Thanks. And, greetings to your Family


No comments: