Manila, Philippines – November 21, 2023
In a significant moment for the National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP), the 26th General Convention saw the election of Ms. Minnie Anne Mata-Calub as its General Secretary, making her the second laywoman to hold this esteemed position. The General Convention of the Council is the highest-making policy of the National Council of Churches in the Philippines.
Ms. Mata-Calub, a lay leader of the Iglesia Filipina Independiente, previously served as Deputy General Secretary in 2020 and the Acting General Secretary in 2023, demonstrating her commitment and leadership within the organization. She has been with the Council since 1994 serving in various capacities. Her election, held during the NCCP’s 60th year, affirms her dedication to continuing the NCCP’s longstanding legacy of service and pursuit of peace based on justice.
The General Convention, also marked the celebration of the NCCP’s 60th year Anniversary, with the theme: “Upholding Our Ecumenical Spirit: Thinking and Doing What is Pleasing to God.”
The newly elected General Secretary expressed her gratitude, stating, “In its 60th year of the NCCP, it is an honor to serve the council and continue the good work it started six decades ago. I believe that God will bless our endeavors as we serve the people and our society, catering especially to the most vulnerable in our society.” Ms. Calub emphasized the NCCP’s commitment to unity and justice, stating, “The Council will continue to pursue Christ’s mission for a life of dignity for all through ministries based on unity and justice.” She affirmed the NCCP’s dedication to the vision of shalom, as envisioned by its former leaders.
In line with the convention’s agenda, five new officers were also elected to key positions. Bishop Melzar Labuntog, General Secretary of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines assumed the role of Chairperson. The Most Rev. Brent Harry W. Alawas, Prime Bishop of the Episcopal Church in the Philippines was elected as the vice-chairperson for men. Ms. Jennifer Ferrariza-Meneses, Executive Secretary of the Board of Women’s Work of the Philippine Central Conference, United Methodist Church and Pastor Jon Dave Angeles from the Iglesia Evangelica Metodista En Las Islas Filipinas and former chairperson of the Kalipunan ng Kristiyanong Kabataan sa Pilipinas, were elected as Vice-Chairpersons for women and youth, respectively. The Rev. Leonardo Morada, General Secretary of the Iglesia Unida Ekyumenikal was elected as the Corporate Treasurer.
Ms. Calub, an active ecumenical leader, holds a significant role in the international ecumenical arena, as she is the Vice Moderator of the ACT Alliance.
The NCCP also gives thanks to the incumbent leadership from 2019-2023 Chairperson: Rev. Felipe Ehican, Jr. of the Lutheran Church in the Philippines Vice Chair for Men: The Most Rev. Joel O. Porlares, Iglesia Filipina Independiente Vice Chairperson for Women: Rev. Dr. Gay B. Manodon, Episcopal Church in the Philippines Vice Chairperson for Youth: Ms. Ma. Kay Cathrine F. Almario, Iglesia Unida Ekyumenikal Corporate Treasurer: Major Allain M. Nietes, The Salvation Army
The newly elected officers, including Ms. Mata-Calub, will serve a four-year term from 2024 to 2027. The National Council of Churches in the Philippines remains the largest aggrupation of mainline Protestant and non-Roman Catholic churches in the country.