Zoe Christian Fellowship was founded by Bishop Frank L. Stewart in 1984.
The word Zoe is a Greek word meaning “the God kind of life.” Zoe is the life that Jesus came for us to have according to St. John 10:10. It is this kind of life we will experience when we learn to live on Earth by the principles of God’s Kingdom and follow God’s way of doing things.
In July of 1988, Ed Smith, who was serving as an elder under Bishop Stewart, received a vision from God. He saw a large number of small groups of people coming together around the Word of God. He realized that God was calling him to start a bible study fellowship ministry. As he pondered the vision and thought about the needs of the people that would arise in bible study groups, he said to God, “If I did this it would be like pastoring.” He immediately received in his heart that God wanted him to pastor a church. He shared the vision with his wife, Vanessa, and with Bishop Stewart, both of whom supported him.
On October 15, 1988, the church began with a bible study in Pastor Ed and First Lady Vanessa’s home. They continued weekly bible study as they began to organize and plan for a major outreach event at the Cerritos Mall to help launch the church in January 1989.
On January 8, 1989, Zoe Christian Fellowship held its first Sunday service at Cerritos High School. One hundred and six (106) people attended. Three people received Christ, three people were filled with the Holy Spirit, and six people joined the church.
In Zoe’s very first year as a church in 1989, a total of 142 received Christ, 33 rededicated their lives to Christ, 79 were filled with the Holy Spirit, 386 people visited the church, and 128 made Zoe their church home.
Zoe continued to conduct church services at Cerritos High School from 1989 to 1995. As a result of church growth, the need for a permanent home became clear.
On July 7, 1995, Zoe relocated to its current location – a 4.5 acre church campus in Whittier, California – and Zoe Christian Fellowship of Whittier was born. Since that time, the church has grown to over 3,000 members from all nationalities and walks of life.
Through sound biblical teaching, discipleship, ministry outreach, and global missions, Zoe continues to build, strengthen, and equip individuals to grow, and mature in faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and fulfill God’s kingdom purpose in the Earth.
Zoe celebrated 30 years of ministry in 2019.
The history of Zoe is still being written.