History of the Churches of Christ in Mindanao

Editor’s Note: This is church history written like no other, and poetic license is our only reason for this fixation. How God’s saving grace reaches hearts in ways we oftentimes cannot understand, at great costs we oftentimes cannot imagine, is a great story, and it needs to be told! While some churches tell their stories, or have other people tell their stories, some heroes of the faith have remained unrecognized, and the churches that have grown out of their efforts and their hardships and sufferings— and out the martyrdom of some of them— have remained untold. Our history has many gaps. This history will strive to fill in some of those gaps. 

The movement that resulted in the founding of the congregations of the Churches of Christ in this country today came from three streams. The first stream of our movement began in Muñoz and was transplanted in Cotabato in 1937. I must say it started with Leslie Wolfe, a man of admirable qualities, who came to Manila in 1906, put up a school and established a work that endures even after he departed. The coming of an equally admirable man, George Benson, to Mindoro in 1928 (an interregnum and a last-minute option to save him from the dangers in China) was a blessing to the movement. His work, resumed by such noble souls as Henry G. Cassell and Pedro Asada when Benson went back to China, was the stream that became the catalyst to refine the movement in Cotabato in 1939 and 1941. And with the arrival of Floyd Hamilton in 1946, and then by others like Harold O’Neal, Leland O’Neal, Charlie Garner, Ray Mayhue, and Charles Sheppard, the three streams became one. The movement in Mindanao has produced hundreds of congregations, has expanded to many areas of the country, and is still growing.

Four chapters of this history are stored in the author’s database files, and the fifth is forthcoming. If interested to read more, please email him at: mountainviewcoc@yahoo.com.







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