A scene from the "JESUS" film.
A scene from the "JESUS" film. (JESUS Film)

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Following six years of faithful service, Jesus Film Project's Dr. Erick Schenkel today announced his decision to transition out of the role as executive director for reasons related to his health.

"When Elizabeth and I first decided to join Jesus Film Project, we asked ourselves, 'How can we have the greatest possible impact on the world for Christ?'" And the Lord led us here," stated Schenkel in a letter sent to leadership, employees, volunteers and supporters of Jesus Film Project and its parent organization Cru. "For the past six years, it has been our deep privilege to serve alongside each of you, in what I think is one of the most powerful movements helping to fulfill the Great Commission." 

Under Schenkel's leadership, Jesus Film Project has accelerated ministries, organizations and denominations to fulfill the Great Commission. Since 2010, more than 2 million churches have been planted as a result of the ministry's partnership and last year alone saw nearly 200 million gospel presentations leading to 37 million indicated decisions to follow Jesus.

"We have been incredibly blessed to have the Schenkels shepherd Jesus Film Project over the past six years, and both Erick and Elizabeth will be greatly missed," stated Cru President Steve Douglass. "The positive impact they have made on our organization and for the kingdom through their leadership has been substantial and life-changing. Millions have come to know Christ through their efforts." Douglass has asked Schenkel to help lead the transition team searching for the next executive director.

Jesus Film Project is best known for its JESUS film, which was envisioned by Dr. Bill Bright, co-founder of Cru, and was produced in cooperation with The Genesis Project. JESUS is the most-watched film according to Guinness Book of World Records and is available in nearly 1,600 languages. Jesus Film Project continues to carry out Bright's vision of showing this film to people in every country of the world.

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