Faith, the Word, Prosperity, the Holy Spirit, Praise, Consecration, the Supernatural, Wisdom, Prayer, Success, Vision and Healing; these are the words that the Bishop speaks to his congregation every time they gather. He describes his own teaching on prosperity as “covenant software for programming yourself into victories and triumphs.” Has it been of any effect I ask? With the Living Faith Churches aka Winners Chapel present in over 300 cities in all states of Nigeria, as well as in over 63 cities in 32 African Nations, Dubai, the United Kingdom and the United States of America, I would say verily, verily, there has been tremendous impact from his messages in the lives of many.
Born in Osogbo on 27 September, 1954 David Olaniyi Oyedepo, a native of Kwara State, was delivered to a Muslim healer and a mother who was a member of the Cherubim & Seraphim sect. He was raised by his grandmother in Osogbo, who started early on to train him up in the things of the Lord. He accepted salvation in 1969 through the influence of his teacher, a Ms. Betty Lasher, in Secondary School. He studied architecture at Kwara State Polytechnic and worked briefly with the Federal Ministry of Housing in Ilorin before resigning to concentrate on missionary work.
After an 18 hour inaugural vision in May 1981, The Living Faith Church World Wide was founded although, it’s initial banner was Liberation Faith Hour Ministries. Two years thereon, on 17 September 1983, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, ordained David and his wife, Florence Abiola Akano (now known as Faith Abiola Oyedepo) as Pastors of the church. Five years after, he was ordained a Bishop. The Church was started in Kaduna, but moved to Lagos, the former capital of Nigeria in September 1989. Bishop David’s teachings put him in the category of what is commonly called the Word of Faith Movement. He has referred to principal exponents of the Faith Movement such as Kenneth Copeland, Gloria Copeland, the late Kenneth Hagin, T.L Osborn, Smith WigglesWorth as well as renowned Nigerian preachers Enoch Adeboye and the late Benson Idahosa as his mentors. Bishop David is deemed as one of the pioneers of the Christian charismatic movement in Africa and has been referred to as one of the most powerful preachers in Nigeria.
Via the David Oyedepo Ministries Webpage, his ministry is poised to liberate the entire world from all forms of oppressions of the enemy both spiritual and physical through the teaching and preaching of the Word of Faith, schooling men to exploits in life and releasing men and women to their full potentials to benefit humanity. “We have diverse proofs to date that the task is enjoying tremendous success, by the grace of God, through testimonies of dramatic changes and improvements in the quality of life of the people, everywhere these churches are represented.” They also operate a Bible training programme known as Word of Faith Bible Institute for members and non-members alike to develop in-depth knowledge of Christian principles and to develop leaders and future pastors.
Also a record breaker, Bishop David is also the senior Pastor of Faith Tabernacle, a 50,000 seat Church auditorium reputed to be the largest in the world by the Guinness Book of Records. It is located on the church’s 5000+ acres of land situated in Ota, Ogun State, referred to as Canaanland campus. The estate houses the church building, the church secretariat, the church’s youth chapel, a Primary School, a full boarding mission Secondary School called Faith Academy, with over 1,500 students and the Covenant University facilities which accommodates over 7,000 students, resident in ultra-modern hostel facilities, with fully equipped faculty buildings and numerous staff housing facilities .Canaanland campus also has for -profit establishments operated by the church such as a bakery, a bottled water processing plant, a petrol station, various restaurants and shopping stores, several residential houses that provide for the over 2,000 church employees, and guest houses. Banks are also present on this Estate, some of which are branches of external commercial banks and one which is a community and Micro-Finance Bank and operated by the Church.
Bishop David’s social and economic pursuits include founding over 100 educational institutions based on Christian principles for Primary, Secondary and Tertiary stages of formal Education to empower the young generation and improve the educational system in Nigeria and Africa. This has led to the establishment of Kingdom Heritage Model Schools in different cities in Nigeria for Primary Education; Faith Academy, a Missionary boarding Secondary School, Covenant University [adjudged to be the best private University in Nigeria in the year 2005] and Landmark University which was opened in 2011.
Bishop David is also the Chairman/Publisher of Dominion Publishing House (DPH), commissioned on December 5, 1992 which has published over 4 million prints in circulation. It is no wonder then that he was named in 2011 by Forbes magazine as the richest pastor in Nigeria, worth around $150 million. An acclaimed author himself, he has written over 70 titles apart from periodicals. He is also the President of the David Oyedepo Ministries International which acts as an umbrella body for the churches, publishing house, World Mission Agency (WMA); the global missionary arm of the church’s operations, the Educational Institutions, and the Social Development Missions projects (made up of hospitals, maternity homes, schools, etc).
Bishop and Mrs David Oyedepo are blessed with four children, two of whom have already followed the Bishop’s path into ministerial work and head the London and South African branches of the Winner Chapel International.
From December 4-8, 2012, the global Living Faith Family will gather at CANAANLAND, Kilometer 10, Idiroko Road, Ota, Ogun State, for SHILOH 2012. It is an annual event and the theme of this year’s event is DOUBLE PORTION. If you can’t find your way to Nigeria for the event, you can be part of it via the internet. Just log on to http://livingfaithchurchworldwide.org or www.domimedia.org and you will be with the Living Faith family live.
Living the faith and winning all the way!!! Are there any heights that cannot be attained by the one who seeks God’s heart?
© 2012, Jennifer Nkem-Eneanya. All rights reserved.