CEF celebrates 75th Anniversary
Friday 18 May 2012
People are gathering from all over the world this week in Warrenton, Missouri to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Child Evangelism Fellowship, the largest Christian ministry to children in the world. CEF is now active in 176 countries and last year shared the gospel with over 11 million children around the world. In the United States, CEF has a presence in over 3200 public schools where Good News Clubs meet after school. For each of the last seven years, CEF has trained 250,000 teachers annually around the world to advance its mission of reaching as many children as possible.
During the celebration at CEF headquarters on May 18th, CEF will announce several significant milestones that the ministry has attained including the number of children reached this past year and the new countries in which CEF now is working. By its count, CEF has only 32 countries and territories where it still needs to establish its ministry before it is present in every nation of the world. Additionally, CEF will release the 75th anniversary edition of its history titled, "The Indomitable Mr. O". The book has been updated with six new chapters and aforward by world-renowned evangelist Mr. Luis Palau. The book is named for its founder, Mr. Jesse I. Overholtzer, a farmer and one-time Plymouth Brethren pastor, who began the ministry during the Great Depression in Berkley, California.
The keynote address during the celebratory service at 10:00AM, will be given by Dr. Warren Wiersbe, the famous evangelical pastor, theologian and ardent supporter of CEF. Leading the music during the service will be the Christian group, This Hope, which will also perform in concert at the headquarters later in the day.
CEF expects 300 guests to attend the event including a number of CEF missionaries serving overseas, staff and board members, and representatives from partner ministries and suppliers. A special guest will be past CEF President Alan George who served from 1982-1989. Current President Reese Kauffman, who assumed leadership of CEF after Mr. George retired, said of the celebration, “It will be a joy to acknowledge the hard work and sacrifice of everyone who has contributed to CEF over 75 years and to praise God for blessing their efforts.”