GRACE UPON GRACE
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age. ~ Matthew 28:19-20
It all began in the fall of 1965 as foreign students from the Philippines and Taiwan gathered in the living room of Rev. George Chua with a simple desire to learn more about God and to worship together. By the grace of God, the ministry grew rapidly within months.
Birth of a Church
In May of 1966, the congregation officially registered with the State of California as a non-profit organization – First Evangelical Church (FEC). That same year, Rev. Eddie Lo stepped in as the lead pastor of the new church with Rev. George Chua’s family moving to the Philippines.
As FEC continued to grow, the Taiwanese speaking members had a dream of worshipping God in their native language. On October 11, 1970, with the blessings of the mother church, God fulfilled their dream – the birth of Evangelical Formosan Church (EFC).
The Core Team
The new church plant was led by six Taiwanese deacons and deaconesses: Charles Ting, Henry Hsu, James Chen, Marian Chen, Ching-Lin Chen, and Elizabeth Chen. With about forty-some founding members, EFC began gathering with Rev. Samuel Kau as its first lead pastor.
Home Sweet Home
After renting in Alhambra for about two years, in 1973 God blessed EFC with its first building in El Sereno near by CSU Los Angeles. In 1975, with Rev. Samuel Kau moving to Hong Kong, Rev. Felix Liu became the lead pastor. In 1977 God provided EFC with an even larger facility in Highland Park, just north of the first location.
As the congregation grew, and with the need to combat energy crisis and to help ease the amount of driving done by members weekly, in 1979, EFC began its expansion with four new meeting locations to the east (79), to the west (79), to the north (81), and to the south (82).
The General Assembly
On October 16, 1982, EFC General Assembly was established by the five EFC churches at that time: Los Angeles, East Valley, South Bay, San Fernando Valley, and Orange County. Also established were EFC constitution and bylaws, executive board, and ministerial association.
The 9025 Vision
In 1986, with only 11 locations, a vision was cast to have 25 locations by the year 1990. Over the next few years, God inspired EFC to plant churches not only within the United States, but in Costa Rica, New Zealand, and Australia. The 9025 Vision was fulfilled in 1990.
The 2050 Vision
In 1996, a new vision was received to have 50 locations by the year 2000. At the same time, the burden to bring the gospel back to Taiwan was shared among many EFCers. In 1997, EFC Taipei was established, followed by Kaohsiung (98), and Tainan (99). The 2050 Vision was fulfilled in 2000 with 51 locations.
As EFC celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2020, there are now 146 EFC church communities in 4 continents, 10 countries, worshipping God using various languages. With Christ being the foundation, EFC continues to love God, love one another, and to make disciples of all nations.