In 1989 a group of young, vibrant, Catholics first gathered at the parish hall of Santa Rosa Roman Catholic Church in Arima, Trinidad, under the pastoral care of then parish priest, Fr. Malcolm Galt (Bishop Emeritus) for prayer meetings. Due to church renovations, the group was accommodated at the Arima Girls’ Roman Catholic School and assumed the name “People of Praise”. The group’s main chrisms were praise and evangelization through music for fostering deep and personal relationship with God and the renewal of the parish and wider Church.
An explosion in membership from the original 26 persons necessitated a larger meeting place for this group which had dedicated their lives to serving the Lord. That same year People of Praise rented a private residence on King Street, Arima. An ardent desire to pray and work together was fueled by the common life-changing experience termed the “Baptism or Release of the Holy Spirit” following the Life in the Spirit seminars which were commonly featured in Charismatic prayer groups throughout the Archdiocese of Port of Spain.
People of Praise has evolved from a small prayer group into a larger Catholic Ecclesial Covenant Community of over 200 active members in the parish of Santa Rosa, in the town of Arima, Trinidad. Established since 1989, the Community exists to foster goodwill through reaching out to others, especially youth and young adults through seminars, workshops, retreats, prayer, music with an emphasis on singing and music, counselling, personal development and faith formation programmes. The Community has an active social outreach ministry inclusive of evangelizing and ministering to prison inmates, reaching out to immigrants and refugees along with distributing hampers of food, books, stationery and clothing on an ongoing basis to needy persons and families in Arima and environs.
On 14th September 2018, People of Praise Community received official recognition from the Archbishop of Port of Spain, Rev. Charles Jason Gordon and became a Private Association of Christ’s Faithful.