Indigenous Missions of the Philippines

October 26, 2011

Hundreds of tribes and nations live in the 7000 islands of the Philippine archipelago. Before the Spaniards came in the 16th Century, the only organized religion among them was Islam, centered mainly in the large southern island of Mindinao. Spanish priests introduced a paganized form of Catholicism which did not change the lives of individuals. Then Protestant missionaries poured in following the American occupation, which began in 1899.

A great change came following World War II, after the Philippines gained their independence in 1946. Many Filipinos began going to the USA as foreign students where they were strongly influenced by Christian schools and evangelistic ministries. One by one they were called of God to go back home and evangelize their people.

But even though their hearts were burning with missionary zeal, they had no financial resources with which to begin their ministries. Then, in a marvelous demonstration of His providence, God raised up Christian Aid in 1953, at the very time when He had prepared anointed servants to carry the gospel back to the Philippines.

Christian Aid is currently sending financial support to 76 different ministries in the Philippines which deploy about two thousand native missionaries and gospel workers. Hundreds more are in training at their many Bible institutes. Together they are believing God that in our generation a witness will be planted for our Lord Jesus Christ within every tribe and nation of the Philippines.

The importance of Christian Aid’s support of 76 indigenous missions and their 2000 native missionaries is summarized by the leader of a mission working on Basilan Island: “All of these years you, Christian Aid, have been there for us. About 75% of the students who graduate from our high school (in this Muslim community) profess Christ as Lord and Saviour before they leave. They could not have been reached without your help. The importance of Christian Aid is beyond our ability to express.”