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Spiritual Stability

Growing up in a nomadic lifestyle and raised as a non-believer, Philippe's curiosity about the Bible becomes a guiding force in his quest for meaning.


Philippe Pichon: But like every French person would think, “Be careful where you’re going, maybe it’s a cult, maybe it’s something like that.” But when I looked at the minister who led this very evangelical mission, I was told that he was reading the verses in the Bible. I was curious and continued, and from there, I was hooked and said, “Okay, I’ll continue my Bible studies.”  

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My name is Philippe Pichon. I’m 55 years old. I was born in La Tronche 38 in L’lsere. It’s a city next to Grenoble and I grew up in La Ciotat near Marseille in the south of France.

My Father Was Never There

My life with my parents at first was not easy because we were nomads. I lived in a caravan, we moved from one city to another with my parents. My father bought a house in La Ciotat when my second brother was born where we led an easier life. My father used to travel and when he bought the house in La Ciotat, my father was never there during the week. So it was me who played the role of the father at home.

My father was leaving to work to look for a salary to feed his family. So I couldn’t blame him. The only time I could blame him was when he wasn’t there for competitions. For example, I did swimming, we had competitions, training sessions. My father was never there. My father came back every Friday, he always brought us little gifts. 

During my youth, I grew up between school and work. I preferred working and started at the age of 16 years old. Studying was not really for me, so I preferred working. 


“I Left My Parents”


When I left my parents after an argument, an argument with my father. We had an argument because I was supposed to go and work on ships, on oil tankers, in the kitchen area. And my father didn’t want me to go to the end of the world on a ship like that. I told him that I was old enough to make my own decisions. And so he didn’t like that, so I left home.

I chose Paris by chance because I wanted to return to the nomadic life. So I searched for small ads for work and I found a person, a couple who were looking for a person to work with them on a ride. And that’s when I left for the Paris region to work at festivals. 

I grew up in the fairground at the age of 20. The weekend was a lot of work. You start early in the morning and you finish at 2-3am. I met a sister in the Church Of Christ, who I now consider as my mother. It all started when she regularly came with other Filipinos to the fair. It just went naturally. We were talking, laughing. I made people win beautiful stuffed animals, that’s it. It was joyful in the end. And then the sister told me, “We’re going [to church], you can come if you’re interested.” And I said, “Okay, why not?”

“I Was So Curious”

Some brethren there translated the lesson to me and it got me even more curious. There were things I didn’t know… God? Yes. An Executive Minister? I didn’t know. There was a void for me. I didn’t understand how the Church worked at all. 

But like every French person would think, “Be careful where you’re going, maybe it’s a cult, maybe it’s evil, you never know.” But when I looked at the minister who led this very evangelical mission, I was told that he was reading the verses in the Bible and I thought, “This is weird.” Then I realized that it was like a question-and-answer game. And it’s true, how they explain it to us is that everything is based in the Bible. My first question was to know exactly the difference between, the difference between why we call God, “God.” And why our Lord Jesus Christ, we don’t call God. Normally, they are linked. And it was explained to me that our Lord Jesus Christ is made of flesh and bones. All that is explained during the Bible studies. The purpose of my first question was to know who was who and to assimilate things and to know who I should address in my prayers. And from there, it made me curious so I went on to see what happens next. I was curious and continued, and from there, I was hooked and said, “Okay, I’ll start my Bible studies.”

“No One Supported Me Until Now”

Yes, absolutely. I was very lucky to have brethren who supported me in the Local Congregation of Paris. Because no one has ever supported me in my life. Considering how I grew up, how I was always left out, for example living the nomadic life, I was on my own when I grew up and all alone in Paris. And then there were those people who weren’t even French, who aren’t part of my family but still they supported me. 

When I started to join the Church Of Christ, we had no minister. We used a cassette player and put in tapes. A minister only came once every two months. It was a minister who came from Germany. He came to Paris to do the Bible studies about every two months. Honestly, I wanted to know a little more. And from there we thought, “Come on, I have to go to the Philippines.” Because there is no minister who speaks French here, I won’t be able to make it and if we only have a minister every two months, it will be very complicated. So I decided to go to the Philippines. 

“I Traveled To The Philippines”


I met another sister with whom I traveled to the Philippines. I was with her family and she’s the one who brought me to do my Bible studies in Central [Central Temple, in the Philippines] and [attend] worship services. She led me to the right path. She’s the one who told me, “We’re going to the Philippines. You will do your doctrines there.” 

The first time I went to the Philippines, you have to keep in mind that I never stepped foot abroad and that it was the first time I flew in an airplane. It was really an adventure. I can tell you that the good God was with me that day because I really wouldn’t be able to do anything on my own. It was a big adventure. I’d say it was a very human experience too because I met so many good people there. 

The first time I went to the Central [Temple] to have my first Bible study, first of all, I took the Jeep-taxis in the Philippines, there was no air-conditioning. The trip to go there was already an adventure on its own. And when you see the [Central] Temple before you, I was beyond impressed. When I see the Temple, it’s really extraordinary.  

“I Was Baptized In The Church Of Christ”

My goal was to get baptized. As I was saying, I did my doctrines in the Philippines for four months with a minister who spoke several languages including French. So I was baptized in October 1991. I fell into the right religion. I understood where I was going at the end of the story. And for me anyway, once I had my baptism, I couldn’t go back. For me, I completely changed my life. 

“I Am Complete”

Thanks to the Church Of Christ, I [am] able to live a righteous life. What we learn within the Church, we can also put it into practice in our professional and family life. I’m thankful to be a member of the Church Of Christ. I am complete. Everything I have is thanks to God. 

What makes me happy now is that I am in the right Church. That I am on the right path. That I am in this house of worship. That I have brothers and sisters by my side.  

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Spiritual Stability