Eunuch for Life: the Sacrifice of Bro. Eli Soriano

This story is about the song said to be persistently being searched for by Bro. Eli. It says a lot about what the preacher is undergoing today: hatred despite his love, treachery despite his benevolence.

By Beana Jao

Bro. Eliseo Soriano had a girlfriend named Naty. He would be bringing her to bible studies. In his late teens, Bro. Eli was already a promising preacher, and he knew what to do with life. But then one day, despite his Naty, he would declaim to people, “I am not getting married.”

It was Bro. Nicolas Perez, his superior at that time, who had asked him to prepare that declamation piece acted out before the congregation. Whether it was to test his ward or not, Bro. Perez was said to tell the young Eli, “And now you have to fulfill that!”

Marriage was something Bro. Eli had to give up in order to respond fully to the call of preaching. In 2005 when he had to go on exile for religious persecution, he had asked his brethren what they thought of him marrying a non- Filipino, an African to be exact. There was the question, but as the congregation knew all along, Bro. Eli had his heart fully tied to the ministry.

In all of his life, Bro. Eli expressed love to the brethren as a whole. At the same time, if he questions that love, it is questioning why that love has turned sour for some. More or less, the question is addressed to those who have turned traitors to him without him having done anything to deserve the hatred. These are but a few though who have allowed themselves to be willing tools to satan.

This story is about the song said to be persistently being searched for by Bro. Eli. It says a lot about what the preacher is undergoing today: hatred despite his love, treachery despite his benevolence.

I’ve read of a song posted in the Internet for some time.  It lacked lyrics and the writer was inviting those who knew to please provide. I read about the call in Twitter and in other sites. That was many months ago then. I guess it had been already over a year that the site had been waiting for a completion of the song, but then there was no more sign of it being accomplished. I remember well a blog titled, Ang Resulta, where I found the notice. It was handled by technical men.

In these days of information highways, no one would be keeping musical records or diskettes of songs or even songhits. The fast-pace generation can be tied down with compact discs at the least where retrieval can be easy. There is no need to memorize the lines of songs. In 2010, who would bother to be keeping records of old songs?

I casually added what I knew to the bare lines in Ang Resulta – lines that were simply remembered by a son from a dear mother who kept singing the song at his tender age. Bro. Eli’s mother used to sing this song. The melody remained with the hearer but the lines were bare like tattered rags this time. Lines, nothing, nothing, lines, nothing. Wide, gaping hole, lines, period.

After my few additions, mails came to me to please help. I learned then that it was a Bro. Eli who needed the lyrics.

I tried the Internet and true to their words, there is none available in the Internet. It was an old, old song in the 30’s and 40’s perhaps, or even decades earlier. There was only a piano piece available, they said.

The title, they said, was Love and Devotion by Louis Drumheller. Perhaps for the piano piece. I checked the Internet and this was what often showed for Love and Devotion

O-la o-la o-la o-la hey, o-la o-la I want you baby, I want you baby,
O-la o-la o-la o-la hey, o-la o-la I want you baby, I need you baby.

Love and devotion, baby
I can’t get enough of all that love and devotion in my life.
Love and devotion, baby love and devotion,
You are the sunshine of my life.

But this o-la o-la hey version was not the interest of the preacher. The song that Bro. Eli was said to be looking for began with a slower beat that was maintained throughout.  It starts with “In a quiet village” but the words, “love and devotion” are not found in the whole song. All the more, it was very difficult to find it, because there was no popular singer attached to it, and the period involved was uncertain.

After I received another notice from one who I thought was a yaya (nanny), I figured the song was really needed. I asked someone in Mindanao, south of the country, to ready his bike and go find an old-fashioned lady who was in possession of some songhits. I knew the lady kept some possessions of his dead brother who was a guitarist.

Hoping to find results, I banked on emails but I didn’t get any: there was none. The messenger returned and instead talked about finding someone left behind the times. “Old fashioned, timid woman, more like an hermit,” he said. The lady had become a Baptist and now believes that singing songs is evil. She had changed religion. It was then that the lady burned all the precious collections of his brother.

I then thought of my elder brother, John, and begged him to find the lyrics of the song in his town. He bragged to me that this was the very first piece he played with his accordion. After a time, he had produced the lyrics but only up to what I already knew. There was still a stanza missing.

One day, I received a text message from a high school classmate named Ben. It was a surprise that he was able to connect with me. Politics brought him to my brother’s place. He was campaigning for his friend for the position of governor. This classmate of mine who I thought was a nuisance to my life proved to be otherwise.

Back to the lyrics of the song, I felt that help could only be among singers who kept the lyrics in their memory. I grew up in a high school where we had American teachers for English. They transported their English songs to our school. Our cheering songs in high school were also borrowed from foreign schools with the same name. “In a quiet village/many miles away/there I had a sweetheart/ known as my little mate…” These were not any different from, “When it’s springtime in the rockies, I’ll be coming back to you” and “Oh, Danny boy, the pipes, the pipes are calling.”

I turned then to Ben to locate people who loved to sing, those engaged in serenading at dormitories at night. Perchance there were those who could remember the lyrics. We talked about tracing some of them through their relatives. One time I received an email from a child of a music teacher. I got some lines but with a little lapse of grammar. A day after, another notice came. This time it was from Ben. He said he got the missing stanza from his brother Norman. The rendition was a much improved piece from the child.

When I read the last stanza, I was struck by the words. Yes, very true. The very same people who ate out of the benevolence of the preacher are now the very ones hitting him from behind. The very same people who would invent all lies and twist everything after they went to another camp. “Another camp” refers to the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) that for some time had been at odds with Ang Dating Daan. Records show that most of those excommunicated from Soriano’s group went to this church, albeit with much difference in beliefs beginning with the man-christ doctrine of the INC. But there were others too, who, out of ambition, formed their own group, believing that preaching is something to earn from. They, too, contributed in providing lies.

In fact, at first, I thought Bro. Eliseo Soriano, the presiding minister of the Members Church of God International (MCGI) or Ang Dating Daan, was married and that he knew nothing but sing along the videoke. That was one of the lies being foisted on innocent people. I remember a TV anchorwoman of a giant network sometime in 2001 who tried hard to present the preacher as just an ordinary being – far from the Bible scholar that Bro. Eli is, and a hard-hitting preacher who doesn’t budge when he encounters a false teaching. I saw the preacher facing a monitor, and like a fool, he was singing, yes, but not presented the way he uses songs for his work.

In that episode, Bro. Eli was interviewed. As the story closed, the camera flashed and a vintage image of Beth Soriano Razon with two young children were shown. Any viewer would find this insertion very much suggestive.

And who is this Beth? It was no other than Bro. Eli’s sister and the mother of Daniel Razon, the vice presiding minister of MCGI, and nephew of Bro. Eli. So, this Beth is Bro. Eli’s sister and not his wife, and the two children presented with this Beth is Bro. Daniel and her sister. They were not the children of Bro. Eli. The preacher had sacrificed his whole life to preaching and had foregone marriage.

Again, people can be fooled if they don’t watch out. Bro. Eli appears to be the target of many sectors now. The more he advances with his ministry, the more enemies he gets. Fabrications come day in, day out. If we don’t watch out, we can be fooled by them.

When Ben came to learn that the song that needed to be completed was for Bro. Eli, he got so excited – but not before he was able to access the missing myrics.  In his text message, he described Bro. Eli thus:  He is an out-of-the-box preacher! Extremely fascinating! A maverick in his own right! Ben is the youngest son of a bishop of the Philippine Episcopal Church.  Ben comes from a family of bishops.

Songs play a very important role in the preaching of Bro. Eli. He would use them to emphasize a point, to differentiate things, to evoke memories,  to provide a pause in his teaching.

By this time, I was ready to go back to Ang Resulta to report what I found, but the notice was deleted. This is the song for now –

Love and Devotion
By Louis Drumheller

In A Quiet Village
Many Miles Away
There I Had A Sweetheart
Known As My Little Mate
Once We Had A Quarrel
That Drifted Us Apart
Though She Knew I Loved Her
She Knew I Loved Her
And Yet She Broke My Heart.

Why Are You Cruel My Darling
Why Did You Cast, Cast Me Aside
Think Of The Days When You Loved Me
When You Were My Promised Bride.

Many Years Have Passed By
Since I Saw Her Last
Midst a Crowd of People
I Recognized My Bride
Dressed In Wedding Fashion
A Man Stood By Her Side
Oh, She Knew I Loved Her
She Knew I loved Her
And Yet She’s Broken My Heart.

by Beana Jao

 

This entry was posted in enemy interventions, Faithful messenger, moment of decision, True preacher and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

42 Responses to Eunuch for Life: the Sacrifice of Bro. Eli Soriano

  1. CelynYen says:

    I’ve been a KNC in the church and about 10 yrs now but what I read here is something new. May God continue bless our sensible preacher. Thanks and always to God be the glory!

  2. rowen says:

    For his love of God Bro. Eli endures to the end. To God be the glory.

  3. It is very heartening that someone like him is giving us good examples to follow. His patience with what his enemies do to him is very remarkable.

  4. Mark Jay says:

    What a inspiring story!

    I knew Bro. Eli as our preacher, who take care and defend our faith because of his love to us. But there are things that unrevealed to me that only in this article I got its information. What a nice and inspiring story…Thanks be to God.

  5. victpr says:

    “Some Gold can only be found by those who dig for it.” A man who finds Gold is happier than the one who bought it. To God Be The Glory. Amen

  6. Cathy Go says:

    Great Man!

  7. Pol Arellano says:

    Another interesting and inspiring facet of a phenomenal preacher is unearthed through this engaging article. Pitiable are those who malign a man like Bro. Eli Soriano, who would rather lose his sweetheart than lose his focus to serving God with all his life.

  8. jec says:

    I remember when i saw the picture of bro. eli and sis naty in a documentary, they were very young. I wonder then how bro. eli felt as time went by. The song might express somehow.. Thank God for all the strength and wisdom he gave bro. eli

    • Oh, You are so fortunate you saw that one!

    • I’ve watched a related story on Spotlight and it shows a girl with Bro. Eli. Is she Naty?🙂

      Bro. Eli said: “I was preoccupied by my faith and devotion to my ministry so I didn’t have much time to enjoy my teenage life.”

      We are so blessed we have a preacher that is very true and sincere to his promise for the sake of the people he is leading.

  9. RHEA IDYLLE says:

    wala na pong katulad sa panahon natin ang kapatid na Eli.Salamat po sa Dios na nakilala ko po sya.Mapalad ako na si kapatid na Eli Soriano ang mangangaral ko..Salamat po sa DIOS sa kaloob na di masayod.

  10. Niño Mahilum says:

    i became an avid listener of Bro Eli since college. i decided to be baptized last 30 of April 2010. i was amazed by Bro Eli’s Biblical explanation, he was able to explain everything in the Bible.

    this question should be answered by the fabricators of lies of COGI “Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth?” Galatians 1:16

    Vigilant members can’t be fooled by fabricators.

  11. Ernesting says:

    That’s what Bro Eli’s life made wonderful!

    Full of sacrifice, different life scenario,intriguing,etc.–evidences of a good servant of Jesus Christ.[worthy of all acceptance]May God grant him more power, for his fight for run on race of life…

  12. edgardo says:

    Thanks be to God for the preacher that He sent to us

  13. cnc mesina says:

    What i can say is that Bro.Eli lays his life for our sake and for the sake of others like what the Bible says in John 15:13 – Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Thanks be to GOD!!!may God bless you always Bro.Eli. we love you and miss you!

  14. cynthia agapito says:

    Br.Eli is “GOD SENT”, and for those who have been seeking for the truth in salvation…God gave these man the full authority at the present time as the most sensible preacher for HIS WORDS…Thanks Be To God.

  15. elmantheman says:

    “Why Are You Cruel My Darling… Amidst a Crowd of People I Recognized My Bride…”

    This is exactly how the enemies in faith of Bro. Eli do it, they parade on Television his once good friends whom he served and treated like true siblings, parents, children, and best friends, to malign and disgrace him.

    “…Dressed In Wedding Fashion
    A Man Stood By Her Side
    Oh, She Knew I Loved Her
    She Knew I loved Her
    And Yet She’s Broken My Heart.”

    And yet the most painful part is that, others need not instructed by the enemies, they themselves are willing accomplice to shame Bro. Eli.

    If Jesus Christ, even the apostles and the first Christians suffered from such pain from their own friends, what more of Christians in this times.

    The Spirit of the LORD will rest on him— the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of power, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD – Isaiah 11:2 NIV

    God knows best how Christians respond to this kind of treachery. I feel lucky to have seen godly deeds in the flesh, in the person of Bro. Eli who persevered serving God and his fellow people globally, from the East to the West almost all of his life on earth.

    • elmantheman says:

      These treacherous people thought that they are now wearing the wedding dress, but they are just there to be paraded by the enemies, to be used as instruments to pierce the heart of the one whom once treated them like his own siblings, children, parents, best friends.

      And the song mentioned in the article, entitled, “Love and Devotion” by Louis Drumheller, almost says it all.

      I was watching this Doctor Who TV show, and got this line that somehow says, “All the pain just made it more kind!” – which always finds its way in my heart and mind whenever I think of Bro. Eli and Bro. Daniel, which almost always makes me cry. Learning the biblical teaching makes us understand what Christians and friends of Jesus Christ should do: taught in accordance to Jesus Christ’s faith, based on the commandments of God, in service to humanity.

      Bro. Eli, may God always give you what your inner man desires. Again, “All the pain just made you more kind!”

  16. Whit says:

    The lyrics of this song: “Love and Devotion” clearly explained the emotion where no exact words can’t be put into it.

    It’s old, thus everyone knew it hardly. Thanks be to God for the source and to the researcher who provided the missing last stanza to bro. Eli.

    It’s like giving him treasure.

    Anything that’s hard and a rare find is a treasure for everyone.

  17. theophilus says:

    I also found that notice on Twitter. Right, an ordinary song can mean a lot.

    Whenever I hear Bro. Eli sing a song I try to feel what is being said behind that song. It’s really a song from his heart when he sings a certain song.

    What adds beauty to the song is our experience; it is also because we simply know that the person singing the song also experienced the situation in the song. Just like what adds proof to our faith is the experience that we have each surpassed.

    Bro. Eli suffers a lot of afflictions: he ought to be relaxing by now. Music has been his outlet then. It is not just part of his texto but part of letting you feel his warmth and his love.

    I suggest that we sing with him, his Love and Devotion…

  18. Hazel Chavez says:

    Bro. Eli is a paradigm of faith to his members. He walks his talks. He even deprived himself of the many comforts this world offer to dedicate his life to the ministry and in helping the less fortunate.

    Those people who go against Bro. Eli know exactly that all that the preacher have done to them were absolute kindness. If only they have listened to their consciences, they would not have betrayed him.

  19. leah says:

    How blessed we are to find a Honest and a Very Sensible Preacher..I am very proud for having him in my life, though he didn’t know me in person. My faith is that he is the only one who will teach us the true salvation…

  20. We are so blessed God sent us a preacher,
    A preacher whose choice serves as a reminder;
    A reminder for us what is sacrifice
    A sacrifice we learn how to exercise.

    Though it hurts to see your love is smiling,
    And that smile is not the one you are owning;
    The smile and her hand now belong to other
    How you wish you didn’t see so you wouldn’t suffer.

    But though so many times you feel the same pain,
    Yet so many times you are crying like rain;
    That’s alright for there’s something more important,
    To serve our God gladly without any rant.

    Our preacher’s heart tasted a lot of pierce,
    Thank God those didn’t make him a thunder fierce;
    The same heart so big he uses to serve us,
    To relatives, friends and even those who cuss.

  21. F says:

    Made me cry because it hit close to home. Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift.

  22. wild berry says:

    The only thing I know is, I don’t mind hearing ppl’s destructive criticisms against Bro.Eli…All I know is I was blind before but now I am able to see the light because of Bro.Eli and Bro.daniel’s teachings..thanks and praises be to GOD!

  23. lonewhillie says:

    Thanks God for this article… It console me what I feel right now!!!
    Thanks God for giving us Bro. Eli to become an example to us specially to faithful.

  24. delia rivera says:

    wat more can i and we say but tnx 2 beloved brother in faith, bro EFS, tnx B 2 GOD d Almighty becoz of U, and 2GOD BE D GLORY ALWAYS, and special for our Lord God Jesus Christ

  25. I never knew that she had a girlfriend😦
    He is really a good leader, a good example for all of us.
    To be committed in the calling and the ministry despite all odds…
    not only that he did not go to college for the ministry, but also sacrifice his personal happiness..

    He will really be a Eunuch for life…
    What Bro. Eli is experiencing is a bit sad….But Thanks be unto God for keeping him happy.

    Bro. Eli is really sent by God!
    Even during Thanksgiving… he preaches even if he has been awake for how many nights.
    And does a lot of things despite his age…

    Thanks be unto God because I found the truth!
    Thanks be unto God that I knew this great man!
    He is the best inspiration to continue!

    May God always bless Bro. Eli and his family, especially his grandsons and daughters

  26. Chacha says:

    One of our officemates for months had reaserched the lyrics of this song unti this last Friday July 9..I heard Brother Eli singing that song. Hay!! What a wonderful blog..hope you post more about Bro. Eli. We miss him so much.

  27. shierwin salmo says:

    bro eli is a SUPERHUMAN,…………matiis mo b naman ang pang-aapii ng gobyerno ng PILIPINAS malaking pagtitiis un ah,………..hay MARANATHA

  28. Pingback: 2010 in review « Steward Secrets of God

  29. Chelsea May says:

    Bro. Eli sing songs far from my age. But I learned to appreciate it. The melody, the lyrics has sense. Truly! He does things with wisdom.

    Thanks be to God.

  30. evelyn says:

    As I am reading this article, it really made my heart cry, not for sadness because Bro. Eli did not able to marry but because God gave him to people to be a devoted preacher.

  31. thomjones says:

    We are soo lucky for having a brother Eli in this time, he dedicate his life and sucrifice his happiness for the meant of salvation of our soul..Praise God for all the kindness and all unspeakable gift he give to us……
    We love you brother Eli…. TO GOD BE THE GLORY

  32. sacrificing your personal feelings is not a easy thing to do …. I personally know how hard it is…😦

  33. erhynireh says:

    Such a revelation! Imagine Brother Eli gave up his own happiness for the sake of his calling. Such a great sacrifice. We’re so blessed to have such a sensible preacher. To God be the Glory!

  34. iya says:

    This was posted about almost 2 years ago.. And this is actually the first time i read this article.. Though i know Bro. Eli a lot, it’s still gave me a heart-pinching feeling while i’m reading this.. And I owe a lot to him and to HIM.. Thank you God for sending us your prophet..

  35. admin says:

    This is my favorite.

  36. isabel lobos says:

    We love you Bro. Eli,

  37. angelaborromeo says:

    Thanks be to God for helping Bro Eli set his priorities. We know what the flesh wants but with God’s help and mercy Bro Eli chose to pursue his role as MCGI presiding minister!

  38. gL3nn F0rd says:

    Im just curious if is there any copy of the poem that bro Eli recite which made by bro. Perez? Hope we can read that also… salamat sa Dios…

  39. John A. Diaz says:

    According to this link https://openyun.wordpress.com/2011/01/10/love-and-devotion/ buo na raw ang lyrics nitong song na to…

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