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I'm a Filipino-American from Kentucky doing missionary work in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, with my wife, Sarah, and my children, Carmen and Jacob.
Interests: I am interested in songwriting, reading, running, writing, singing, volleyball, playing blues on my guitar, hiking, jazz piano playing, and basketball. I am an avid Chicago Cubs fan and crazy about the The Bears. I believe in The Big Blue Nation where the UK Wildcats rule in all basketball games.
Recent Activity
We ate good food. We shared many stories. We encouraged each other with visions of our God working in Southeast Asia. How can we participate in God’s work and follow His leadership in this region of the world? I am here in Chiang Mai, Thailand, visiting with our Free Methodist (FM) missionaries. My primary goal is to see for myself some FM ministries located here in Thailand so I can prepare a mission trip for the following year and bring some students from our FM seminary in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. So, while I am learning new things about the work, I... Continue reading
Posted Feb 21, 2018 at David's Reflections
“What can we say the kingdom of God is like? How shall we put it in a parable? It is like a tiny grain of mustard-seed which, when it is sown, is smaller than any seed that is ever sown. But after it is sown in the earth, it grows up and becomes bigger than any other plant. It shoots out great branches so that birds can come and nest in its shelter.” (JB Phillips NT) Everyone knows that investing one’s money in a bank is a good thing. You make deposits because you know that in the future you... Continue reading
Posted Feb 21, 2018 at David's Reflections
I am learning the names of the pastors and leaders. There are more than 35 in attendance to this 5-day Pastors’ Training Seminar. I try my best but in the end, I can only remember a few. I give more emphasis on knowing the types of ministries these pastors are involved in. Here are a few question I gathered as I went around talking to our Nepali pastors. How do you write songs for your worship time in your local churches here in Nepal? Some of these Free Methodist pastors write their own worship songs. Pastor Padam uses his sarangi,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2017 at David's Reflections
Kul and Minu invited me to their home for a time of dinner and fellowship. I gladly accepted their invitation. It would be a good break for me from my usual time of lectures and teaching. And besides, they have one-year old Joyce, whom I met earlier, and she is such an adorable baby. She has the prettiest smile and would respond to my questions when prodded. It did not matter that she understood my questions, or if I can understand her gibberish baby talk. Her giggles and passionate monologues were always fun to watch. I looked forward to meeting... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2017 at David's Reflections
Ten years ago, these young people were children visiting our ICCM (International Child Care Ministry) centers, and some of them were sponsored children. Now, they are active youth members of our local Free Methodist (FM) churches in Cambodia. They help out in the ministry in many different ways. One of these is going out with the local pastors to help in the outreach ministries. Some of them tell Bible stories to children. Others manage the sports activities. A few share the gospel to local mothers and parents in the areas where they visit. In short, these young people are active... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2017 at David's Reflections
We said our goodbyes. Carmen and I hugged each other. Yesterday, I said goodbye to my daughter, Carmen, and my son, Jacob. They won’t have the chance to say goodbye to me because my departure time for Cambodia is one of those early flights. I need to leave the house by 5:00 in the morning. Saying good bye to my family never gets any easier. I have been doing this work for over ten years. And every time, leaving the family in Kaohsiung still leaves me with a hollow feeling inside. I still struggle with the act of giving a... Continue reading
Posted Sep 29, 2017 at David's Reflections
We are back in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. It is good to be here. This is where God wants us to be, for now. This is where my children's friends are, most of them. This is the city we call home, until the time when God sends us again to another place. I like staying here in Kaohsiung. I love the food and the hospitality of the people. Maybe, not too much the weather. I could live without the humidity and pollution. Some days, the horizon is clear and we can see the beautiful mountains from a distance. I like staying here... Continue reading
Posted Aug 9, 2017 at David's Reflections
“Let us pray for the Clementes.” They all gathered around my family, the four of us, and prayed for us with everyone extending their hands in a symbolic gesture of affirmation and faith. This prayer time is extra meaningful, not only because all of the church members who are praying for us are our good friends from many years, some from 25 years ago. Their prayers are also significant because this local community is giving to us, their missionaries, out of their poverty. This local church is a small congregation of 50 or so, and financially challenged, and struggling to... Continue reading
Posted Aug 9, 2017 at David's Reflections
We were huddled in front of the campfire exchanging stories and singing songs, old songs. “And he walks with me, and he talks with me, and he tells me I am his own.” I started with this song, and Sarah C., Sarah P., Cindy, Joy, and Marlene joined in the next few lines. We sang in harmony. We did not care when we messed up verses and interchanged lines from one stanza to the other. We were having a great time. “Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee.” We moved on to other hymns and great old gospels.... Continue reading
Posted Aug 9, 2017 at David's Reflections
“I want to serve the Lord,” Mr. A shares with me his frustration. “But I cannot. I have to take this job to provide for my family.” He recounts an earlier attempt to play the piano for a local church. The music ministry was fulfilling but there was no steady income. He had to find work somewhere else. Mr. A is a professional musician working here in a restaurant here in Taiwan. His wife, Mrs. J works in the same location as a singer. Let us call them A&J for short. They sing in a restaurant, seven days a week,... Continue reading
Posted May 19, 2017 at David's Reflections
"And can it be that I should gain. . . " This great Charles Wesley hymn will always be a part of my ... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2017 at David's Reflections
"Though your sins are like scarlet / they shall be white as snow." (Isaiah 1:18) I find myself singing the song based on this Isaiah chapter. "Though they be red, red as crimson." Today, my devotions start with the book of Isaiah. It is a liberating thought to know that all my sins are washed away. His mercy set me free. I continue singing the song that I learned when I was in college. "They shall be white, white as snow." I remember now how hard it was for me to sing this song. Let me reminisce a little bit.... Continue reading
Posted Apr 4, 2017 at David's Reflections
(The following is a description of what I do in Asia. My name is David W. Clemente and I am a missionary teacher.) God is calling me to a life of teaching in Asia. I am obeying our Lord by going to Free Methodist (FM) congregations located in Southeast Asia and helping their local pastors and church leaders become better servants of the Christian gospel. This year I will be assisting FM leaders in Asia as they prepare for ordination. I will be going to Cambodia and Nepal to lead seminars on Wesleyan Theology and other Bible courses. I will... Continue reading
Posted Mar 10, 2017 at David's Reflections
"God grants comfort to those who mourn. He gives them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and gives them the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit. For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime.Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning." (Is. 61:3 & Ps. 30:5) Continue reading
Posted Feb 28, 2017 at David's Reflections
Six siblings. Six out of eleven came for our 2016 Family Reunion. Three days of fun with all 33 of us, including one-year old babies Caleb and Sky. Fun at the beach and laughter at the table. It was sweet to watch my children reconnect with their cousins and cousins' children close to their ages. Many of the kids were calling my 12-year old son, Jacob, "Uncle Jacob." Carmen had a blast playing card games with her young adult cousins, who are mostly in their mid thirties. The last time we were in the Philippines was in 2011. This reunion... Continue reading
Posted Jan 19, 2017 at David's Reflections
When people look at Mary, what do they see? Do they see a helpless teenager pregnant with a child she believes is divinely conceived? Or do they see a struggling mother-to-be making sense of her life as a chosen one? In the text, we see Mary receiving her blessings (Luke 1:48). People will call her “blessed” for many years to come. And yet, we still have to answer the first question: What do they see in Mary? I have some suggestions that relate to the whole Christmas narrative. When people look at Mary, they see God’s inclusion of everyone in... Continue reading
Posted Jan 19, 2017 at David's Reflections
(The following is a letter I sent to a retired university professor who is a good friend of mine and a passionate supporter of God's work here in Asia.) Dear Dr. R, Greetings! Thank you so much for your prayers and support. Your gift at the end of this year is another confirmation of God’s call in our lives. I am so thankful to our Lord for friends like you who are committed to partner with us here in Asia. We just finished our first semester two weeks ago. Several of the students came to me to show their appreciation... Continue reading
Posted Jan 19, 2017 at David's Reflections
In the book SABBATICAL JOURNEY, the author writes of a homily he shared on a wedding. "Your love for each other comes from God's first love. Keep claiming that love. Your love for each other is a forgiving love. Keep talking to each other, pardoning each other's shortcomings, and praising each other's gifts. Your love for each other is for others, your children, your guests, the poor. Keep your attention focused on those who need to be nurtured by your love." (Henri Nouwen, 1998:63-64). Today is our twenty-first wedding anniversary. Sarah and I are grateful to our Creator-God for sustaining... Continue reading
Posted Dec 11, 2016 at David's Reflections
I am thankful for many things. Good health. At my age, (Please do not ask me how old I am.) I can still play basketball with the boys and girls from my daughter’s varsity team. Thank God. Although after every practice, my aching bones are reminding me that I need to slow down. (Please do not remind me that I am in my mid 50s.) Maybe, I should consult the “Higher Powers” of basketball. Where is Michael Jordan when I need him? I am thankful for a sturdy roof in our house. I truly appreciate it, most especially when a... Continue reading
Posted Nov 24, 2016 at David's Reflections
It is history of course. The Chicago Cubs is the World Series 2016 Champions! After 108 years, we are here. It is past now. The world knows. There is no need to repeat what everyone is talking about, what the world media is covering. We are here. I am so happy! I am grateful to be a big part of this historical event in USA history. I came to America as a foreign student and married into an Illinois family with deep roots in Chicago Cubs culture. I heard my wife's grandmother, Grandma Addie, say: "I want to see my... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2016 at David's Reflections
(Christine Liao is a student at Holy Light Theological Seminary, here in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. She shares here her testimony of God’s guidance in her life. Together with her husband, Sean, they are registered with our Free Methodist school in Taiwan, Holy Light Theological Seminary.) Today, I am going to share with you about my sweet moments at Holy Light seminary. Sean and I made a big decision in 2014. We decided to resign (from our work) and come to Holy Light seminary to study for our MDiv degrees. For me, this is the grace of God. When I was young,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2016 at David's Reflections
“I can’t stand the pain.” Most of us have probably said these words at some point in our lives. The degree of pain would vary from person to person depending on the nature of situation. Discomfort. Grief. Regrets. Sorrow. Anger. You get the idea, right? When pain comes to our lives, it comes with a lot of other things. We spend more time and energy dealing with the other stuff. At best, we relegate pain to a point of secondary importance. At worst, we forget about the pain. “There will be no more pain, nor sorrow; no grief and death.”... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2016 at David's Reflections
She touches my face. She smiles and giggles. I try to coach her to follow me as I pat the table with my open hand. She imitates my moves. She laughs whenever she hears the sound of her hand hitting the table surface. We all laugh with her. Our one-year old visitor is visiting us for a day, and all four of us are delighted with her every move. Lucy is here with our family to take a day off from staying at a local orphanage home. We take turns cuddling with her. We cherish our short moment with Lucy... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2016 at David's Reflections
“What are we good at?” Professor Naoto asks the chapel participants. “Koreans are good at prayer. Taiwanese are good at singing,” he continues. “We, Japanese, are good at thinking.” Everyone at the seminary chapel laughs. I give out a big smile of approval. I am guessing this group of Japanese Christians is making fun of themselves. Everyone seems to take the joke well. Last month of June, 2016, I was in Japan, around the areas of Osaka city and Kobe city. I went with a music team from Kaohsiung, Taiwan, for a mission trip, to visit different Free Methodist churches... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2016 at David's Reflections
(The following is the manuscript of a sermon I gave at a Missions Rally in Kishinosato Free Methodist Church, Osaka, Japan, last June 26, 2016) Good afternoon. I would like to thank everyone for coming here and giving me this time to share with you all God’s message for all of us. I thank you Bishop Honda for receiving our Taiwan Team. I thank you Rev. Shigetomi for scheduling our many visits. And I appreciate all the pastors and church members who have helped us so much, by driving us to many places, sponsoring our meals, and preparing the instruments... Continue reading
Posted Jun 30, 2016 at David's Reflections