PASTOR Nelson Dungan and The Church of Jesus The Life Giver (JTLG) first crossed paths in October 2006. In the first week of October 2006 Ps Dungan had returned a church he had pioneered to the oversight of its mother church. In the third week of that month, by chance, he met a leader of JTLG church at Bacnotan, La Union. This church had been without a pastor for some time, and had been sustained by visiting pastors.
Ps Dungan visited JTLG church for the first time on November, 5, 2006, and again on January 7, 2007, with eight people attending each time. On January 28, the church’s 15th anniversary, Ps Dungan was a guest speaker. He was asked to remain as pastor. He and the church prayed for direction throughout February. Ps Dungan began working with the JTLG church on March 4, 2007.
Over five months, he surveyed people in three barangays (villages), distributing tracts and asking why people were not attending the church. Ps Dungan said after this period, he told the Lord he wanted to go back to his work at Bacnotan. “But God said we will work here,” Ps Dungan said. “He drew my attention to three little girls, aged 8, 9 and 10, and said ‘Start with them’. Since then, every time I see a group of children going to school I urge them to go to church.” On June 20, 2007, more than 20 children came for Sunday school and this number has continued to grow.
In July, 2007, the church invited the Department of Agriculture to teach mothers how to gain extra income with frozen foods. Since then, some mothers and children have started joining in at JTLG. In August 4, 2007, Ps Dungan and his family moved to the pastor’s house, giving more time for ministry. In September, 2007, the church invited people from three barangays to have their eyes checked and receive reading glasses for a donation only. This ministry was provided through the Assemblies of God outreach organization ‘Optical’. These initiatives have nurtured greater trust between the church and local people. The church is known to be a praying church, and many people visit to be prayed for – especially those taking their board exams.
More recently, Pastor Dungan’s wife, Flordeliza Dungan, has begun leading Christian teaching in local schools. She previously supported JTLG’s ministries by working for a commercial organization.
The church is now (without financial support) starting to teach micro-financing, with a view to helping local people become small business entrepreneurs.