The Iglesia Ni Cristo is the largest non-Catholic church in the Philippines with a significant global presence. Founded by Felix Manalo in 1914. This religious movement stands apart from other Christian denominations due to its unique beliefs and practices. Its fundamental beliefs are centered around Jesus Christ and the Bible. It has unique worship practices and social services.
In this blog post, we will explore the history and fundamental beliefs of the Iglesia Ni Cristo. As well as its role in Philippine society and the controversies surrounding it. We will also take a look at worship practices and membership requirements for joining this powerful religious movement. Join us as we delve deeper into the world of the Iglesia Ni Cristo!
History of the Iglesia Ni Cristo
The Iglesia Ni Cristo was founded in the early 20th century by Felix Manalo. Who believed that he had received divine revelations and was the last messenger of God. The church quickly gained popularity in the Philippines as an alternative to Catholicism.
Despite facing persecution from the Catholic Church and the government. Manalo established the first congregation in Manila in 1914, and the church grew rapidly in other parts of the country.
The Iglesia Ni Cristo was registered with the Philippine government in 1922. Since then expanded worldwide with millions of members in over 100 countries. The church’s perseverance and dedication to its religious vision have enabled it to thrive and become one of the fastest-growing religious movements globally.
Fundamental Beliefs of the Iglesia Ni Cristo
The Iglesia Ni Cristo is a Christian denomination that adheres to a set of fundamental beliefs, which guide its doctrines and practices. Some of these core beliefs include:
These fundamental beliefs are central to the Iglesia Ni Cristo’s teachings and practices. The church also places a strong emphasis on moral values. Such as honesty, integrity, and respect for others.
Members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo are expected to live a life that is in accordance with these beliefs and values, and to actively participate in the church’s activities and services.
The Role of the Iglesia Ni Cristo in Philippine Society
The Iglesia Ni Cristo has a significant influence in the Philippines. Particularly in terms of its charitable activities, political engagement, and promotion of family values. The church is renowned for its disaster response team, which provides relief goods and medical assistance to those in need.
It also operates various social services, such as free medical and dental clinics and livelihood programs. Aimed at improving the welfare of the underprivileged.
The Iglesia Ni Cristo encourages its members to participate in the democratic process and has its political party, the Christian Era Broadcasting Service (CEBS) party. The church also promotes strong family values and community solidarity among its members.
Membership in the Iglesia Ni Cristo
Membership in the Iglesia Ni Cristo requires undergoing a series of teachings and religious instruction, known as “Doctrinal Instructions,” followed by baptism through full immersion in water.
Members are expected to attend church services regularly and live a life that adheres to the church’s teachings. The church provides a sense of community, spiritual guidance, and personal fulfillment for its members.
The Iglesia Ni Cristo encourages members to participate in church activities and programs and also emphasizes their role in supporting the church’s charitable activities and social services.
Worship Practices in Iglesia Ni Cristo
Worship practices in the Iglesia Ni Cristo are highly structured and organized, with regular worship services led by a minister that include hymns, prayers, and sermons. The church observes various religious holidays and events with special worship services and celebrations.
Personal prayer and spiritual discipline are emphasized, along with outreach programs and evangelical missions to share the church’s teachings. The Holy Supper, a solemn ceremony symbolizing Christ’s sacrifice, is also an important part of worship in the Iglesia Ni Cristo.
Controversies Surrounding Iglesia Ni Cristo
The Iglesia Ni Cristo has been the subject of various controversies throughout its history. Some of the controversies have been related to the church’s practices and doctrines, while others have been related to its leadership and internal affairs.
Despite these controversies, the Iglesia Ni Cristo continues to have a significant presence and influence in Philippine society and around the world. The church has taken steps to address some of the criticisms and allegations. Such as the appointment of an ombudsman to investigate internal affairs and the implementation of reforms aimed at promoting transparency and accountability.
The Iglesia Ni Cristo is a Christian denomination that has grown to become one of the most influential religious movements in the world. Its unique set of beliefs and practices has enabled it to thrive despite facing various controversies and opposition.
Although its doctrines may not be for everyone. Many members find great spiritual fulfillment in being part of the church. Its charitable works continue to bring hope to those in need. Ultimately, it is up to each individual to determine whether or not Iglesia Ni Cristo’s beliefs and teachings are right for them.