(Source: Phillip Garcia) In a book written by former Iglesia Ni Cristo minister, Dr. Melanio P. Gabriel, Jr., titled “Ang mga Lihim at mga Kabulaanan ng Iglesia ni Cristo” (The Secrets and Lies of the Iglesia ni Cristo), on page 7, the total membership of INC is listed by years. Sources of the figures are the official magazine, Pasugo, of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, and other prominent newspapers. The list shows the year, membership and the publication where the figures were published, respectively: 1949, 4 million, Pasugo, August 1954, p.5-6; 1950, 2 million, Pasugo, December 1955, p.35-36; 1951, 2 million, Pasugo, July 1951, p.24; 1955, 1 million, Pasugo, July 1964, p.23; 1961, 4 million, Manila Times, October 13, 1961; 1963, 3.5 million, Sunday Times Magazine, April 28, 1963, p.62; 1964, 3 million, Sunday Times Magazine, August 9, 1964, p.28-29; 1965, 4 million, Philippine Herald, November 1, 1965; 1966, 5 million, Manila Times, May 9, 1966 and Pasugo, July 1966, p.6.
As observed in the given figures, the total number of members of this organization radically fluctuates. They have announced their total membership in their official magazine, Pasugo, in 1955, and the figure they gave was 1 million. In 1966, only after a decade, they have reported a total of 5 million members in both the broadsheet Manila Times and in their Pasugo. As of 2007, in Inquirer.net, the group “has a membership of at least two million,” as aforementioned. Therefore, it appears like a guessing game.
However, there are more reliable sources than the Pasugo of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, like the Bureau of Census and Statistics. Here is an extract of Joe Cruz’ report from the newspaper The Bombshell, published on October 21, 1954: (Source: Phillip Garcia blog)
Right from the mouth of the late son of their "Last Messenger" Mr. Eraño Manalo came out the confirmation that their 10 million affiliates is just a MYTH!
“Hindi ho ba naman isang napakarahas na pagpaparatang iyan? Hindi. Kaya ko nalalaman sapagka't ang mga ulat na dumarating sa amin, hindi totoo." -Eraño Manalo
“Kayong (Eh yong) manggagawa ngayon, inaasahan ko na kapatid, heto, mali ito, bakit ka mag-uulat ng hindi totoo?" -Eraño Manalo
Yes their own ministers cheated their statistics to make it appear that they are more than what we think they are.