Iglesia ni Cristo
|Iglesia ni Cristo (Church of Christ)|
|SERMONS, ESSAYS AND OPINIONS||
"Iglesia ni Cristo" is an exclusive religion related to mainstream Christianity which emmerged in the Philippines through the preaching and teaching of the late Felix Manalo. It denies the doctrine of the Trinity and Deity of Christ and teaches that a person can only be saved through becoming a member of the Iglesia ni Cristo.
The Iglesia ni Cristo teaches that:
- God the Father is the only true God.
- Jesus is the Son of God, mediator between God and Man and redeemer of human sins
- Holy Spirit is the active force of God
- The Bible is the only Word of God both the Old and New Testaments
- Felix Y. Manalo is God's Messenger in these last days
- Salvation can only be obtained through joining the Church of Christ or Iglesia ni Cristo
- Baptism by water immersion is the conversion from evil to good
- Unity within in the church even when electing officials in parliment
- Brotherly love within the congregation, treating each one as true brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus
- That Jesus is preparing a Holy City in Heaven for those faithful members of the Church of Christ
The Iglesia ni Cristo teaches that the worship service should be foremost in the life of a member of the Church of Christ. It is compulsary that each and every member attend two worship services weekly, usually Thursdays and Sundays. A worship service consists of hymns, prayers, sermon, offering, doxology and benediction. The worship service is usually led by an ordained minister of the church and is commonly held at the local chapel or locale. The Iglesia ni Cristo's chapels are noticeable because of their large facades with tall-narrow spires.
The Iglesia ni Cristo is led by the Executive Minister of the church. Felix Manalo was the first Executive Minister and now his son Erano G. Manalo currently serves as Executive Minister. Below him is the Deputy-Executive Minister which is like the position of a Vice-President. Erano's son Eduardo Manalo currently serves as Deputy Executive Minister. Along with twelve other ministers, collective they form what is known as the Central Administration. The Central Administration is where all policies are set for the remainder of the church's followers. Below them is the District Administration and the Local Administration.
Organizations of the Religion
There are a number of organizations within the Church of Christ. The most common are Buklod (for married members 18+), Kadiwa (for unmarried members 18+), Binhi(for members 12-18). Other organizations are Adults Choir, Junior Choir, Secretariats, Financial and so on.
Membership and Congregations
Membership numbers in the Iglesia ni Cristo are kept secret. However, there are over 2,000 congregations in over 60 countries and territories. In the Philippines, the Iglesia ni Cristo is considered the second largest religion. Outside of its home, the Iglesia has a following in Hawaii and California, Australia, Canada, Italy, Japan, the British Isles and Libya.