Gereja Masehi Injili Sangihe-Talaud
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Christian Evangelical Church in Sangihe-Talaud
Kantor Sinode
PO Box 121
Tahuna 95812
Sulawesi Utara
Indonesia (Asia)
Telephone: +62 432 21370
Fax: +62 432 22828
Address-No.: 1340 / 4222

The Gospel came to the Sangir archipelago at the same time and in the same way as to the Minahasa (cf. GMIM no. 26). Throughout the 18th century the number of Christians was larger, around 10,000, but the mission was later in returning to Sangir. In 1857 four carpenter missionaries came to Sangir; in 1859 four more started work in the Talaud Islands, more to the north. By that time Christianity had disappeared in Talaud. In Sangir the congr were still there, but they still followed the old EIC pattern, which was not to the liking of the pietist missionaries. The leading missionary was E. T. Steller, who with his own hands cleared the forest and laid out a plantation which became the center where leaders of the church and society were formed. A theocratic society was built, and the number of Christians increased from 20,000 in 1855 to 121,000 in 1936. Today 90% of the inhabitants of the Sangir-Talaud Islands belong to the GMIST. In 1921 the missionaries abandoned the paternalism that had been dominant until then. They ordained 16 indigenous ministers. In the beginning these ministers still functioned as a link in a hierarchical chain, but then the missionaries started discussing the building of a presbyterial structure. The process took much time; in 1947 the first Synod of the GMIST convened. Problems which the new church had to face were the relationships between the two island groups and with the Sangirese emigrants in Western Indonesia and in the Philippines. Like its sister church the GMIM, the GMIST made an experiment in granting more autonomy to the local congr (1961). By 1970 this experiment had matured even more radically than in the GMIM, but in 1978 the classis had to be restored. The church suffered much from the political tensions accompanying the rise and fall of the Indonesian Communist Party. Around 1984 a younger generation took over and the rising self-assurance of the Indonesian nation made itself felt in the church. Currently, the church has to cope with a secession movement on the northern islands, the Talaud archipelago. The Synod held in December 1996 agreed to the founding of an independent church in that region. The church has a large number of elementary and vocational schools and some clinics. It publishes a magazine,Marimba. The GKST considers May 15, 1947, as its birth date.


Statistic data of church

total: 220000
(conventionally): 355
house fellowships
(Number of growing parishes): 0
Ordained clergy
total: 122
no information about women´s ordination
total: 0
total: 0
  deacons available
total: 0
no information about missionaries working abroad
Baptismal practise
no information about baptism
No information about godparents
Lord's Supper
Frequency per annum: 0
Newspapers/ Periodicals
no information about publication of magazines
Theological training facilities

Number: 2

Schools providing general education
other schools
Founded in
Organizational structures
Traditional type
  • presbyterian
Official languages
  • Indonesian

International assiciations


last update: 08.02.2006
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