Rev. Dr. N. Jawahar Gnaniah is the founding pastor of East West Community Church, Anaheim, CA (EWCC-Anaheim). Jawahar was born and raised in Madurai, Tamil Nadu. After graduating with an M.Div from Union Biblical Seminary in India, he married Ranjini in 1975. Together they began ministering in the unreached villages of Tamil Nadu. They also founded the India Church Growth Mission (ICGM) in 1978, a ministry which was instrumental in planting village churches in both Northern and Southern India
In 1987, the Gnaniahs entrusted ICGM with local leadership, and moved to the United States along with their young sons, Onesi and Danny, to pursue further studies at Fuller Theological Seminary. Jawahar completed his Master of Theology in 1989 and Doctor of Missiology in 1996. In the same year, Ranjini also completed her Master of Missiology. During their time at Fuller Seminary, Danny was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy, a terminal illness. They decided to continue to live in the U.S. in order to give Danny access to better medical care and other support. The Lord released Danny from his labors and welcomed him home in 2000. Jawahar planted East West Community Church in 1991, which became the first church in Southern California to bring together people from most major Indian language groups to worship the Lord Jesus Christ and to serve as his witnesses.