By KELECHI DECA
TELLINGLY, the 2015 International Pastors’ and Partners’ Conference (IPPC) of Believers Loveworld Nation (Christ Embassy) not only lived up to expectations, it exceeded expectations. The event, which started on Monday, the 16th November 2015, officially came to a close yesterday, Sunday 22nd November 2015 with an International Gospel Music Concert featuring some of Nigeria’s and global gospel musicians for an audience of over 20,000 with over five millions hooking on through live streaming across the world.
The Conference which came to an end yesterday took place at the Loveworld Convocation Arena on Billings Way, Oregun attracted Pastors, Church leaders, Partners from over 125 countries of the world. The IPPC which marks the end of Christ Embassy’s ministry year provided the platform for groundbreaking inspirational teachings from the President of Believers Loveworld Inc, Pastor Chris, other senior pastors of the Ministry, and guests’ pastors from other ministries and Christian organizations from across the world.
The Conference started with an opening address from the Secretary General of the Ministry, Rev. Ray Okocha who took delegates through a journey of worthy achievements within the year under review. According to him, the Ministry exceeded the goals it set to achieve this year.
Rev. Ray Okocha highlighted the impact Pastor Chris Oyakhilome is making across the world even outside the ministry through his incomparable generosity and love for humanity through the revelation God has given him. He said “we’re where we are today because God sent pastor to us”. Giving accounts of the achievements made within the year in review, he noted that the growth has been as phenomenal as it has been exponential.
He went further to give a summary of the Ministry’s programmes going into the next Ministry year starting with Offer 7, then the Regional Camp Meeting in Benin, Pastors Refresher’s Course (PRC), Healing School session in South Africa, International School of Ministry in South Africa, the Easter Youth Camp, LFMA in South Africa, the Jerusalem Tour, Annual Staff Week, AND THE International Cell Leaders Conference (ICLC). The impact of LFMA he said was a resounding success, & the impact was felt all over the world.
Addressing the delegates, Rev. Ken Oyakhilome, Regional Pastor, Christ Embassy Texas Region shared on the power of the minister’s words and the importance of speaking words seasoned with salt only. “When God is with your mouth, sinners will come to the altar,” he said. Speaking in similar vein, the Chairman Planning Committee for the 2015 International Pastors and Partners Conference(IPPC) and Assistant Secretary General of Believers Loveworld Pastor Karen Victor, highlighted the glorious deposits of the Spirit of God in the lives of his Minister. Pastor Karen who also is the Pastor of Christ Embassy, Cape Town, South Africa confidently stated that “God has no plan B for you, because He didn’t plan for you to fail”
The quality of attendance in this year’s Conference points to a Ministry that is yearly outdoing its past in every ramification. Teaching on the importance of a re-culturation using the word of God, Pastor Chris Oyakhilome urged the delegates to be exceptional in all that they do. According to him, “You must distinguish yourself if you want to shine. You must be different. For many years; you couldn’t stay with me without changing. Either you stay or you’ll run away. You can’t have it both ways. These are important things. We’ve heard so much”. Adding that “one day, you were 10, 15, and 20 years…. Act now, you’ll soon be 70. Don’t delay. Act now. He equally spoke on the role of grace in the life of a Christian.
Addressing the gathering, the Director of Church Ministry and Organisation (CMO) admonished the delegates that “This glorious gospel of Jesus Christ is more necessary for human beings everywhere much more than very air we breathe. Be very strategic and tactful in spreading the gospel. With the recent happenings around the world, we need to reach men before these heartless terrorists reach them”.
In her own contribution, the Chief Executive Officer of the Believers Loveworld Pastor Yemisi Kudeihu spoke on the Theory of Exceptionalism. According to her, “some ministries are called to minister to the world. We have the world as our parish. God gave it to us. We grow and expand because of that anointing. People are calling from all over the world to join our vision. We’re reaching every nation. We’re different. We’re working with our man of God. We all have to participate”.
Pastor Chris warned that many are ignorant in the world saying that “it requires our tears and prayers and action. If we are the custodians of the truth, let’s act like we do. The time is short. I thought I would have time to show from the scriptures that we are living in the days the bible prophesied. We are in the last days. The signs are clear. There are things that have now happened that had not happened. We are ready we are almost there. You can smell it. Use your faith for the gospel, not materialism. Faith for the gospel is what you need”.
As part of the Conference, there were special Talk Shows and Panels focusing the overall activities of the Ministry across the world. One of the Panel discussions was on the special DVD titled “Do You Believe in Miracles”. The DVD which is an evangelical tool for the Ministry captures some of the most outstanding miracles that took place at several crusades the Church had across the world. The discussion was anchored by Pastor Joy Amekhienan, the Zonal Director of Christ Embassy Port Harcourt Zone 3. Members of the panel were Pastor Obi Umasiegbu, Pastor Chidi Ezimako of Christ Embassy Abuja and Pastor Uche Onubogu.
Pastor Obi Umasiegbu said that the message in the DVD inspired him personally, “and I thought to adopt a strategy through which the DVDs will be made available to everyone”. Pastor Chidi Ezimako in his own contribution noted that “the thoughts that the rate of patients in the hospital will reduce, the health status of our members will improve, inspired me to ensure that everyone has a copy of the DVD, noting that the material is the solution to every health problem. It’s the health insurance scheme for everyone.
Another special Talk Show that took place was on Partnership Evangelism. This Talk Show which was anchored by Pastor Lanre Alabi, Zonal Director Christ Embassy Lgos Zone 1 had as panelists Pastor Vale Odu Thomas, Zonal Director, Christ Embassy Lagos Zone 2, and Pastor Amechi, Pastor BLW Zone H and Pastor Siji Dara, Pastor Christ Embassy Warri, Delta State. Speaking, Pastor Pastor Vale Odu-Thomas quoted 2 Timothy 2:2 noting that partnership has its reasons and benefits. “I want to communicate to others the benefits of partnership. Ensuring that everyone around me participates in and enjoys the benefits of partnership is my mission”.
Pastor Amaechi made reference to Hebrews 10 that “as a partner, I share my testimonies with others and inspire them to participate in partnership”. Pastor Vales to share their testimonies of what partnership has done for them.” Inspire others with the same passion with which you partner. Ignite others with your passion for partnership. Become a passionate partner. Don’t leave partnership evangelism to only the pastor’s”.
Speaking in similar vein, Pastor Siji Dara noted that “as a pastor, we teach by examples. What you have can be a seed for a bigger one. Don’t wait for the big money first. Have a partnership stand where people can make enquiries about partnership. Encourage those we know to partner”.
At the end, efforts are made to encourage everyone and appreciate all those who contributed immensely towards the achievements of the year, and the direction the Ministry will take, goals to be achieved will be laid out. The Conference which took place at The Loveworld Convocation Arena, Billings way Oregun, Ikeja , Lagos turned out to be the best the Ministry has had ever. It was unique in many respects. This year’s event attracted well over 18,000 people from close to 125 countries under one roof in a special time of refreshing, impartation and celebration. It captured the ministry’s impact across the world and ended on a very great note.
The Pastors’ Conference which attracts all the pastors in the Ministry and also pastors of other ministries that follow the teachings of Pastor Chris Oyakhilome and takes part in every Christ Embassy activities. It also heralds the beginning of the IPPC and started from Monday evening, 16th November 2015 to Wednesday morning, 18th November 2015, while the Partners’ Conference commenced from same Wednesday evening.
The International Pastors and Partners Conference (IPPC) is a harbinger of spiritual and economic blessing to the nation of Nigeria. This year’s event which attracts over 18,000 delegates is one of a kind in this country attracting far more foreigners than any others of such gathering. With over half of the 18,000 delegates that came for this event traveling by air, officials at the Muritala Mohammed International Airport have been having very busy time attending to many of the passengers that have been arriving since Monday 16th November 2015.
According to an Immigration official who spoke to National Daily, “this is the busiest week for us as we have never had this number of passengers at a time. Moreso, some of them are coming from countries that we have not had passengers coming from before now such as Tahiti, Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, and others like that. So it has not been as usual for us, but they are very civil, friendly and well behaved passengers, if this is the type of passengers we have been having, we won’t have challenges” he said.
The gathering which is an annual event brings together tens of thousands of people from different countries of the world. And Nigeria is the best for it, according to one tourism operator who spoke with IPPC Daily, having huge numbers of people coming into a country all at once is of huge tourism and economic benefit. The expert who came from South Africa said that thousands of people came from Europe, North America, not to talk of those from over 40 countries of Africa all paid air fares to come to Nigeria, they will also stay in hotels for a week, paying for their ways to and from the venue of the event. They will also buy foods, and other souvenirs from the country on their way home. All these he said will contribute immensely to the Nigerian economy especially at this time when the Nigerian Naira is under the heat from dropping oil prices. Moreso, this event gives outsiders the opportunity to see the best of Nigeria which helps to launder the image of Nigeria globally because as many of these delegates some of whom have never been to Nigeria before will have good story to tell about Nigeria thus projecting Nigeria in good light.
A pastor who is one of the organizers of the event told IPPC Daily that this event will leave Nigeria better than before. According to him, life-changing words have been uttered both to the delegates, and also on the land. There has been series of prayers for the peace of the land and all the delegates from Nigeria who have been hearing the words will be better for it. This event will leave a lasting impact on this country, she said. Nigerians should be grateful for Christ Embassy for bringing such a huge gathering to Nigeria.
IPPC is projecting Nigeria and Africa positively
The International Pastors and Partners Conference(IPPC)of Believers Loveworld has been described as a diplomatic coup de grace for Nigeria as government has been urged to support organizations like Christ Embassy that are helping to project the image of Nigeria in positive lights globally. This was handed down by Chief Anthony Ude, a hotelier who said that the annual IPPC and other programmes of Christ Embassy are not only helping the Nigerian economy but most importantly helping to burnish the image of Nigeria internationally. He said that in better organized societies, both Lagos State government and the federal government would have supported the church both in logistics, immigration issues for their foreign delegates, security and in any other way the church may need their support. Chief Ude said that in the last six years he has been in the hospitality business in Lagos, no other event in this nation attract this huge number of foreigners from diverse nationalities as the IPPC.
“This is a very good vehicle for the government of this country to market not only Nigeria’s tourism, but also prove to outsiders that Nigeria is not what they read in the media, if after this big event every year, people come and return safely to their respective countries, it then show that this country is not as bad as it is being painted, but government should be in the driving seat of using such events to positively project this country” he said.
Stressing the point further, Chief Ude said that a church like Christ Embassy has done so well in putting the name of this country on the world map, even people who would not have known Nigeria in their lives now know Pastor Chris, and by extension they know Nigeria and many of them are coming to this country. “If I am the Governor of Lagos State, I will ensure that all the roads around Billings way Oregun, venue of this event are in perfect condition, I will also ensure that there are street lights in and around that vicinity, and ofcourse get LASTMA and the Police to provide round the clock traffic management and security within that area” he noted that such support “ is the best thing this State can do to say thank you Pastor Chris for all you have been doing for this State”.
On the part of the federal government, Chief Ude said that the Nigeria Immigration Service and the Customs should always be working hand in hand with Christ Embassy to ensure that anytime anybody from anywhere apply for Visa to come to Nigeria for a Christ Embassy programme, such application is treated with dispatch. He also said that the Customs can also be of support in ensuring that whenever the Church brings in equipment for its programmes, such is cleared without drama, “ my brother, this is how it is done abroad, and that is how responsible governments help encourage businesses and organizations that promote integrity and project their countries in good light”, ours should not be different, he added.
It could be recalled that over 18,000 delegates from over 125 countries are participating in this year’s International Pastors and Partners Conference, it took some up to two days and others three days of flight to arrive Nigeria, some came from as far as New Zealand, San Marino, Bahamas, Hawaii etc. The event rounds up Sunday evening with an International Gospel Music Concert.
The 2015 IPPC lined up to its billing, and has launched members of the Ministry to the next level. When the man of God, Pastor Chris, said “We are superstars,” every delegate at the LoveWorld Convocation Arena was immediately attuned to the reality of our calling to glory in Christ Jesus. Continuing Pastor Chris said “Talking God’s talk propels you in the direction that God has set for you!” By the time the session ended, everyone was speaking in tongues under the influence of the Spirit, making powerful confessions to His name. “I live in the glory; I function from the glory,” the delegates roared, stirred to go out and live a more triumphant life than ever before.
Concluding the Conference on Sunday 22nd November, 2015 with a special global service which had over 5 million people connected from all over the world, Pastor Chris had a healing session for over 500 people before the service commenced. At the service he specially called out delegates from Myanmar and asked them to read 2 Timothy 1:6 and told them that their nation will never be the same again. He told them that they will change the nation of Myanmar forever. After the delegates from Myanmar, he called out the delegates from Pakistan, ministered to them, before calling out the Minister from Israel whom he told that the Spirit of God is full in him to go and do great things in Israel. Pastor admonished the delegates not to allow human pride to make them to be left behind. Focus on the right things in life “what you see is what you become”, he said, set your gaze on the light, he added.
Continuing, Pastor Chris told the delegates that they have been in Lagos for a week and have had the opportunity to listen to several men and women of God, “what are you going to do with what you have heard, and what you have learned”, he said. Do not ask what Christianity has done for you; ask yourself what you are doing with your Christianity. He equally spoke extensively on why many countries of the world are not getting things right in their economy and their politics because their educational system is not attuned to achieve the quality of change they are yearning for. “How can someone in Nigeria train to be competitive with someone in Britain whereas he does not know how to solve Nigeria’s problems. Until leaders sit down and think through the educational curricula in schools, they won’t be able to raise the quality of people who can change the economy of the country” he said. Pastor Chris also spoke on why some countries are where they are in the world because there has never been any conscious effort for the people to think about why they are together as a country. Until some countries take a more decisive step towards issues like this they will never be able to become great, he warned.