A CHRONOLOGY OF PROTESTANT BEGINNINGS: JAMAICA
by Drs. Daryl L. Platt and Clifton L. Holland
(last revised on June 6, 2003)
Historical Overview of the Jamaica:
Jamaica discovered by Christopher Columbus: 1494
Spanish Colony established: 1509
British defeat the Spanish, becomes a British Colony: 1655
Emancipation of Slaves Declared: 1838
Independence from England: 1962
Number of North American agencies in 1989: 74
Number of North American agencies in 1996: 40
Indicates European society*
Significant Protestant Beginnings or Events:
1655 - *Anglican clergy arrive with British occupation, mainly to minister to the white population; becomes the Established Church in Jamaica.
1671 - *Evangelism by Quaker missionaries
1680 - *Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, Anglican Church
1688 - *First recorded reference to Presbyterians in Jamaica.
1754 - *Moravian Missionary Society: Zacharias George Caries, Thomas Shallcross and Mr. Gottlieb work among the black slave population.
1783 - Independent Baptist Church, founded by a freed black slave from Georgia, George Liele, who also founded the First African Baptist Church (Savanna, Georgia) in North America in 1773 (he referred to his followers as “Ethiopian Baptists”--some of the churches traced to Liele became part of the Jamaican Baptist Union in 1849; others became known as Native or Spiritual Baptists, a Afro-Caribbean Christian sect; other early black Baptist preachers were Thomas Swigle, George Gibbs and Moses Baker)
1789 - *Wesleyan Methodist Missionary Society, Dr. Thomas Coke arrives to minister to the black population.
1800 - *Church of Scotland (Presbyterian), Scottish Missionary Society
1810 - *British and Foreign Bible Society
1814 - *Baptist Missionary Society of London begins work at Liele's request: missionary John Rowe arrives.
1824 - *United Free (Presbyterian) Church of Scotland
1824 - *Episcopal See established by Anglican Church
1834 - *London Missionary Society, Congregational missionaries
1836 - Jamaican Missionary Presbytery, affiliated with the Church of Scotland (later known as Union of the Presbyterian Church of Jamaica and Grand Cayman)
1837 - American Board of Commissioners, Congregational Church (transferred to the Baptist Union in 1873)
1842 - Jamaican Baptist Missionary Society organized; missionaries from Jamaica sent throughout the Caribbean area, including British Honduras (now, Belize).
1849 - Jamaican Baptist Union formed from among independent Baptist churches.
1857 - *Methodist Church Missionary Society
1858 - Christian Church and Churches of Christ
1865 - Friends United Meeting World Ministry
1876 - United Christian Missionary Society, Christian Church (later, Disciples of Christ)
1877 - Congregational Union of Jamaica established
1880 - African Methodist Episcopal Church
1882 - American Friends Board of Foreign Missions
1883 - The Salvation Army (1914)
1885 - Christian Church-Disciples of Christ
1893 - Seventh-day Adventist, General Conference
1896 - Christian and Missionary Alliance
1913 - Pentecostal Bands of the World
1916 - Christian Catholic Church
1919 - Pilgrim Holiness Church
1923 - Church of God of Prophecy
1925 - Church of God World Missions (Cleveland, TN)
1927 - Seventh-Day Baptist Missionary Society
1930 - United Pentecostal Church International
1931 - Church of God (Seventh-Day) Missions
1933 - Church of God (Holiness) Mission
1937 - Assemblies of God, Foreign Missions
1939 - Baptist Mid-Missions
1939 - Child Evangelism Fellowship
1942 - Assemblies of God, General Council
1945 - World Team (formerly, West Indies Missions)
1945 - Church of United Brethren in Christ
1949 - The Missionary Church, World Partners
1949 - Open Bible Standard Missions, Inc.
1958 - Back to the Bible International
1962 - Protestant Reformed Churches of the USA
1965 - United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands (a merger of the Union of the Presbyterian Church of Jamaica and Grand Cayman and the Congregational Union of Jamaica)
1966 - African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church
1970 - Mennonite Central Committee
1972 - Baptist Bible Fellowship International
1974 - Baptist International Missions
1975 - Partners International
1978 - CSI Ministries
1979 - Faith Christian Fellowship
1981 - Macedonian World Baptist Missions
1981 - Presbyterian Church, USA
1982 - Emmanuel International
1985 - STEM Ministries
1985 - Island Missionary Society
1985 - Christian Blind Mission International
1985 - Reformed Baptist Mission Services
1986 - Christ for the Nations, Inc.
1986 - Mission to the World, Presbyterian Church in America
1987 - International Churches of Christ
1987 - United Church Board of World Ministries, United Church of Christ
1988 - International Outreach Ministries
1989 - World Servants
1990 - Evangelical Lutheran Church
1990 - Hope for the Hungry
1990 - World Salt Foundation
1991 - Reciprocal Ministries International
1993 - Habitat for Humanity International
1993 - Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod
1995 - International Teams of Canada
Date of Origin Unknown:
Brethren Assemblies (Plymouth Brethren)
Church of Jesus Christ (Kingsport, TN)
United Methodist Church
Youth With A Mission (YWAM)
(1) Dates listed indicate the earliest recorded ministry or in case of discrepancies, the date most frequently indicated.
(2) North American Agencies include U.S. and Canadian.
(3) In 1594 The Archbishop of Santo Domingo reported to the Spanish King that Protestant influence and Spanish Bibles had eliminated the differences between Protestants and Catholics on the North Coast (Bosch 1971:53).
(4) The Bibles with Lutheran notes were collected from homes and burned in the public plaza by the Archbishop (Gonzales Roca, 1969).
(5) The Alliance for Christian Service (or Board of Christian Work) was a joint ministry of the Presbyterian, Methodist and United Brethren Churches.
(1) Daryl L. Platt, "Who Represents the Evangelical Churches in Latin America? A Study of the Evangelical Fellowship Organizations." Pasadena, CA: an unpublished Doctor of Missiology Dissertation, School of World Mission, Fuller Theological Seminary, June 1991. Used by permission of the author.
(3) Dayton Roberts and John Siewert, editors: Mission Handbook of U.S. and Canadian Christian Ministries Overseas (MARC 1989).
(4) John A. Siewert and Edna G. Valdez, editors: Mission Handbook of U.S. and Canadian Christian Ministries Overseas (MARC 1997).
Bauswein and Lukas Vischer, The Reformed Family Worldwide (Wm. B.
Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1999).