“No Christ, no everlasting life,” says pastor David Montajes, pictured with his wife Jean.
  • “No Christ, no everlasting life,” says pastor David Montajes, pictured with his wife Jean.
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International Christian Center

1236 3rd Street, Chula Vista

Membership: 250

Pastor: David Montajes

Age: 55

Born: Manila, Philippines

Formation: Bethel Bible College, Venezuela City, Philippines

Years Ordained: 13

San Diego Reader: What is your favorite subject on which to preach?

Pastor David Montajes: I love to preach about the Holy Spirit. But when I preach I go on a series such as St. Paul’s Letter to Romans. So what I do is go verse by verse. I like that kind of approach. So for example, our theme for this year is “Finding God’s Purpose.” My focus is more on spiritual growth and understanding the importance of love in the community.

SDR: What is your main concern as a member of the clergy?

PD: Personally, my main concern is the financial and economic situation. I pray and encourage people to know that despite the situation going on right now that they believe that God is able to provide. We are being affected by what is going on.

SDR: Why did you become a minister?

PD: My sister inspired me. I grew up with my sister in the Philippines, where she was a pastor in a church. My mother died when I was three years old and my father remarried. So from that time on, I went from one sister to another — we have a big family with 11 of us. I’m the youngest. So with my sister pastoring in the Philippines, she took care of me after my father got married and moved to another place. So she pastored the church and I was there helping, playing the instruments — guitar, keyboards, and singing — and she inspired me.

SDR: What is the mission of your church?

PD: We are focused on our mission statement. We call it “BIND” with the letters representing the different aspects of our mission. We “Bring people to Christ,” “Include them in the family of God,” “Nurture them in the Word of God,” and “Deploy them for mission and ministry.” That’s where we focus our efforts and our ministry — in those four mission statements.

SDR: Where do you go when you die?

PD: As far as heaven is concerned, Jesus clearly said that “I am the way, the truth and the life and no one comes to the father but by me.” I always make it clear in my congregation, that irrespective of religion or denomination, what really matters is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. That’s what really counts. If you have that relationship, you can rest assured that when you die, as Jesus said, “I will prepare a place for you.” So it is his heart’s desire to be with you in heaven. So there is that beautiful hope we are looking forward to and we are preparing ourselves to be in the presence of the Lord.

SDR: What happens if someone doesn’t have that personal relationship with Jesus?

PD: If you don’t have a personal relationship with Christ — “He who believes in me, will have life,” but he who rejects him does not have life. It is a clear statement. No Christ, no everlasting life. My stand on hell is that I am convinced that Jesus came to save the world; he doesn’t want anyone to perish. If it happens, that is our choice, not his will.

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