Greetings in the precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to “the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven.”
This week we heard the news that one of the great pillars, consummate leader, and long time minister of our beloved organization, Reverend Emeliano Valle Jr. has graduated and is now in the presence of the Lord. “We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”
When I first came into the assembly back in 1989, my sister was attending Faith Gospel Center and asked us to house some of their youth during a Messengers of the Cross rally hosted in Stockton. We ended up housing 26 teenagers and our lives were forever changed after that Spirit-filled weekend. I also had the opportunity to visit Faith Gospel Center and listen to Pastor Valle’s eloquent and fervent preaching which inspired me.
Pastor Valle was a great man of a deep abiding faith. It was always a blessing to pray with Pastor as he ushered in the presence of the Holy Spirit with his unforgettable baritone voice. He made a significant impact in my spiritual life and I count him as one of my spiritual fathers and a beloved mentor. His leadership during my tenure from a young pastor to an executive officer had given me a confidence and encouragement to carry on the legacy and life of our assembly. Pastor Valle’s devotion for the assembly was evident in his dedicated service as an executive officer for so many years. I was privileged to see him the day before the Good Lord received him home and he told me how much he loved the assembly, and I told him I knew he bled Firstborn. This man of God who touched so many lives and was instrumental in molding our beloved organization will be greatly missed and never be forgotten.
On July 1st, we will join the Valle family and celebrate the blessed and wonderful life of Pastor Emeliano Valle. Let us keep Pastor Valle’s beloved wife, Sister Connie, and the Valle family uppermost in our prayers as they endure this difficult season.
May the wonderful grace of our Lord bless you and keep you.
Gratefully in His service,
Reverend Ben Refuerzo
IAFB General Superintendent