HISTORY OF JECPP
JECPP is an acronym for Jireh Evangel Church Planting Philippines, Inc. It encapsulates the commitment to proclaim the Good News (Evangel) with God’s provision (Jireh) through the planting of local churches in the nation of the Philippines. JECPP’s motto is Proclaim His Praise In The Islands (Isaiah 42:12). It is a non-stock religious organization duly registered with the Philippines’ Securities and Exchange Commission in November 1993. But its origin dates back to an earlier day.
JECPP is an outgrowth of the missions program of Evangel Family Church, Singapore in the Philippines. Under the inspiration of Rev Dr Robert Lim’s dynamic leadership, Evangel Family Church launched its missions involvement in the Philippines in 1985. A four-member team was first dispatched to test the ground and gain exposure in foreign missions. The following year then saw the sending of Evangel’s first career missionaries to the Philippines – to pioneer Evangel’s first missions church in Iloilo City. This modest beginning proved to be the commencement of a church planting movement that would culminate in the formation of JECPP.
JECPP is an enlargement of the burden and vision that God had birthed in Dr Robert Lim’s heart since the mid eighties. Dr Lim had an intense desire to win the Philippines for Christ. His zeal was further fueled by the recurrent, tumultuous events and calamities that had wrecked the Philippines since the ouster of the late President Marcos. With single-mindedness, Dr Lim committed himself and applied all the influence and resources under his leadership to spread the Gospel in the Philippines. His oft-quoted statement was: “The Philippines will not last” – a Spirit-inspired challenge to seize every opportunity to evangelize the Philippines before it was too late. He was given a goal of planting 100 churches in the Philippines by the year 2000. Thus, JECPP was born in November 1993 with 6 local churches after eight years of missionary work in the Philippines by Evangel Family Church, Singapore. Exactly 6 years later, in a JECPP-sponsored leaders’ conference in November 1999 attended by 2000 delegates in Davao City, the announcement was made to the glory of God that JECPP had exactly 106 churches. 100 churches were planted in 6 years in addition to the original 6 churches! This marked the fulfillment of the initial phase of the vision to see the multiplication of churches in the land of many islands.
JECPP came into existence to fulfill the vision of planting 100 churches in the Philippines before 2000. God has so wondrously favored this faith enterprise and marvelously enlarged the vision to embrace various ministry components.
The number of churches planted has already grown close to 600 scattered across the Philippine archipelago. In recent years, the focus has been on gearing the organization toward planting CPM (church planting movement) churches. The intent is to see movements of rapidly reproducing churches taking place all over the country. This is crucial in penetrating vast areas of unreached people groups and accelerating the spread of the Gospel. Essential to the emergence of these movements are the raising of local financial resources and the releasing of volunteer workers for church planting.
Confronted with diverse needs and human sufferings in the nation, JECPP has taken a number of ministry initiatives to respond to the challenges.
The tribal ministry in Southern Mindanao was launched in response to the needs of the indigenous peoples in the tribal hinterlands of Davao. This entailed specialized training to equip workers for the task. It led to the purchase of a sizable mountain land to set up the Evangel Tribal Training Centre (ETTC). Incorporated into the tribal ministry was the annual medical mission aimed at bringing free medical consultation and medicines. Inaugurated in 2004 medical mission has brought together medical volunteers from Singapore and local medical personnel. It has also been replicated in squatter communities and disaster relief centers in other places.
Answering the cries of victims of man-made disasters and natural calamities such as fires, rice shortages, earthquakes, typhoons and floods, has become another feature of JECPP’s ministry. Its churches would pool together financial resources and send volunteers to bring relief and restoration to families and communities in dire needs even in far-flung areas. This is in keeping with Jesus’ injunction to “let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)
JECPP is more than an organization that plants churches. It is committed to plant the Gospel of Jesus Christ in the hearts of men and women, old and young, high and low, in the Philippines so as to truly PROCLAIM HIS PRAISE IN THE ISLANDS.