This site is dedicated to the most humane work of Ms Louise Lynip who founded the children's home and until the 4th July 2006 at the age of 94 continued to participate in it's management. The home cares for orphaned and abandoned children and offers love, security and
an opportunity to be brought up in a christian environment.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


From L to R. Rigmor, Andreas, Aleksandra and Olav Øygarden

Last week I was informed by Rose Longcob that a Norwegian family was coming to visit Bethany with their adopted grown up children. On hearing this news I was anxious to meet them when they arrived in Talakag. I was thinking to myself they are going to really feel the difference in temperature as its now the middle of winter in Scandinavia, just the right time for a vacation.
The day after they arrived Marilou and I went to Bethany to meet up with the new arrivals who were Mr Olav and Mrs Rigmor Øygarden and their daughter Aleksandra and son Andreas. Aleksandra who is now 24 years was adopted from Bethany when she was 9 months old and was born in Talakag. Andreas who is now 21 years was born in Kibawe also in Bukidnon and was adopted at 18 months old. Marilou informed Andreas when she heard he was born in Kibawe that he shared the same birthplace as a famous son of the Philippines namely Manny Paquiao, which he was delighted to learn.

The Øygardens were accompanied by the boyfriend of Aleksandra, Mr Steffen Lücherat as well as their good friends Eythor I. Johannsson and Mary Ann Lund. (see photo below)

This is the second visit of Aleksandra and Andreas who last came 13 years ago when Miss Lynip was still alive and managing Bethany. I was also informed that they were some of the first children to be adopted into Europe as until then most children were adopted either locally or to the USA.
It’s always great to see children who left so young return to Bethany as polished young men and women. During their visit to the Philippines both Aleksandra and Andreas will meet their birth mothers as arranged by Rose.
The family along with their companions will stay at Bethany until January 1 and then relocate to Cagayan de Oro so they can visit the many attractions in the area then travel on to Cebu to finish their vacation before returning back to the cold winter of Norway.
Marilou and I wish them all a very pleasant remainder to their stay here in the Philippines and maybe one day we will have the opportunity to meet up with them all again. We will certainly keep in touch with them and continue to keep them informed of the happenings at Bethany.

Sunday, December 27, 2009


On the afternoon of Saturday the 26th December I had the privilege of attending a party held at the farm premises of Mr Jess Paras the prospective Congress candidate for Bukidnon District 1.

The party was a seasonal treat for the residents of Talakag and surrounding Towns and Barrios comprising District 1, as well as an opportunity for Jess Paras to celebrate his birthday with his family and friends amongst whom were his former classmates at Xavier University Class of 1971. The Paras farm is located near the Barrio of Dagumbaan in a beautiful area on the Talakag plateau with spectacular views of the surrounding countryside.

Jess Paras and Jim Cunningham

I felt very honoured to be amongst the real Bukidnons both Christian, Moslem and Traditionalists and enjoyed tremendously the hospitality of the Paras family extended to Marilou and I during our visit. For those of you reading this Jess Paras is an agriculturist who has held many government posts in the various agencies connected with agriculture in Bukidnon as well as nationwide, besides developing his own farm. An entrepreneur Jess Paras has owned and managed many businesses in Cagayan de Oro and currently owns and operates a Seacat ferry service between Cagayan de Oro and the islands of Camiguin and Bohol.

What has interested me recently about Jess Paras is his initiative to provide a vocational opportunity at his cost for young men and women of District 1 to enable them to acquire skills that will make them employable and give them the chance to find work and perhaps the platform for future personal development. Two of my nephews joined this programme and are thoroughly enjoying the experience so I know first hand that it is working.
Also attending the function was Mrs Fely Imperio (formerly Abello) who was one of the two first children to be cared for by Louise Lynip when she originally founded Bethany Christian Home for Children. Fely spoke to the gathering in the local Bukidnon dialect and endorsed Jess Paras’ decision to run for congress. Fely’s first husband was a former Mayor of Talakag so she knows a thing or two about local politics.

Fely and Jess Paras

Although I myself am strictly only an observer as far a politics go being a foreigner, I had to admit that I was in the presence of a very popular and respected person in the form of Jess Paras. I wish him every success in his attempt to obtain a seat in Congress in the forthcoming elections in 2010.

It would be unkind of me when writing this blog if I fail to mention the tremendous effort of Mrs Nena Paras and her son for organising such a successful event thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended.

Thursday, December 24, 2009


I would once again like to wish all the regular readers and visitors new and old a very merry Christmas and an happy and prosperous New Year.

Thank you for your kindness throughout the year and I hope and pray that 2010 will be kind to the Staff and Children at Bethany.

God Bless.
Marilou hands over seasonal gifts from the Expat Ladies Charities Inc Cagayan de Oro to
Rose Longcob.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


The other day whilst attending the birthday party of Atty Nacua I had the opportunity to visit the Rubber Plantation Project at Bethany that we started at the beginning of this year. The trees are really beginning to grow now with the majority over 2 meters tall. We will plant a further three hectares of seedlings next wet season to bring the plantation up to six hectares.
It was always my intention to have a minimum of ten hectares of rubber plantation so we are getting closer to our target with God’s grace and the financial support of our friends and colleagues without which this idea would never have been started.
Please also read about how we have progressed since we started our Rubber Plantation Project here, here, here, and here. If anyone reading this wishes to contribute to our Rubber Plantation Project please contact me by email for further details.


On the 14th December 2009 Bethany was the location of Atty Nacua’s birthday party.
Atty Nacua is the Chair Person of Bethany’s Board of Directors. The party was attended by the Staff and children as well as fellow board members and family of Atty Nacua.
It was a beautiful day with the sun shining and blue skies above and everyone enjoyed the birthday luncheon provided by the celebrant. The Bethany Choir under Rita’s direction sung a seasonal rendition to mark the occasion which thrilled the audience.
I would like to thank everyone including of course Atty Nacua for making the day a special one and hopefully we can have many more birthdays to celebrate at Bethany.