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Doing laps for the Lord

As part of his ministry, Rodney Stine, who grew up in the Maugansville area, sometimes swims to his subjects in the Phillipines.

As part of his ministry, Rodney Stine, who grew up in the Maugansville area, sometimes swims to his subjects in the Phillipines.

January 21, 2003|by MARLO BARNHART

marlob@herald-mail.com

When Rodney Stine committed his life to God, he probably never imagined he might have to swim to reach some of his subjects.

"Sometimes we can't land the boat, it's just that simple," Stine said of his missionary work in the remote islands of the Philippines.

Born in Pittsburgh, Stine moved to Washington County at the age of 2 and grew up in the Maugansville area. He attended Maugansville Elementary School and graduated from South Hagerstown High School in 1971.

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Currently on a home visit, Stine and his wife, Aida, are raising funds for an orphanage in the Philippines. They will return soon to their headquarters on the island of Mindanao to continue what they call their "tag-team" ministry.

Before they head back, Stine will share the trials and triumphs of his ministry Feb. 9 at 7 p.m. with the congregation of Zion Assembly of God, 13814 Village Mill Drive, Maugansville.

Zion Pastor Joe Quesenberry is inviting Stine's friends and classmates to attend the service and hear about the work Stine is doing in the remote areas of the island nation in the South Pacific.

"He has a gift to share," Quesenberry said. "He has brought town mayors to God over there in the Philippines."

Committing to mission work when he was 21, Stine went to Ecuador for about a year as an independent missionary. While there, he met his future wife, who also was a missionary.

"On New Year's Eve 1977, she wrote to me and I decided to go to the Philippines - her native country - where we got married and began working as a mission team," Stine said.

After a stay there, the Stines came back to the United States so he could finish Bible school. They worked together in Salisbury, Md., first at a halfway house and then pastoring a church for 11 1/2 years.

A three-week vacation in the Philippines in 1997 convinced the Stines to resume their mission work there.

One of their two sons is in Bible college and plans to follow his parents' path. The other is in the U.S. Army Reserve working as a medical technician.

"Our life has been very fulfilling," Stine said.

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