ENUC : Over 10,000 Souls Are Baptized to Open the Celebration of Centenary
EASTERN NIGERIA UNION CONFERENCE
Over 10,000 Souls Are Baptized to Open the Celebration of Centenary
[Photo: Pastor Osei-Bonsu with a neophyte]
After two weeks of public evangelism under the theme "Almost Home", 650 sites produced unprecedented results in the history of the Eastern Nigeria Union Conference. The Pentecost 2023 Baptism Festival was jointly held with the annual One Day Prayer Conference on Sunday January 22, 2023 in Aba, Abia State, Nigeria.
Usually, the prayer conference gathered a maximum of 20,000 people at the beginning of the year. For the president of the Union, Pastor Bassey Udoh, this is unprecedented. He said, "We praise God for what He is doing. We have well over eighty thousand members gathered here. From what we see, we can't determine the number. It is impressive! We have over 10,000 souls that are going to be baptized."
[Photo: Poeple of God]
It is true that in the beginning, according to the organizer of Pentecost 2023, Azukoye Amadi, they “were expecting about 1,500 baptized though we planned for 2,000. But now two out of the 16 Conferences have reached 3,520 souls. When we entrust a project to God, He really does wonders. This is the result of the prayer we are seeing today. We have rented 40,000 chairs but today we are overwhelmed."
[Photo: Baptism ceremony]
In view of all this, the President of the West-Central Africa Division (WAD), Prof. Robert Osei-Bonsu expressed his gratitude to God: "We thank God for this well-organized day of prayer and fasting which culminated in a phenomenal mass baptism of over 10,000 souls. The attendance was overwhelming and beyond expectations."
Speaking as he exhorted the nearly 80,000 people, Pastor Osei-Bonsu commended the Union, " I would like to commend the leadership of ENUC for their visionary and innovative leadership. It is wonderful in our eyes and we have every cause to say thank you to God.” Pastors baptized in 34 mobile baptisteries.
[Photo: Pastor Robert Osei-Bonsu Bless poeple of God]
In a very meaningful and challenging message, the man of God encouraged everyone, "May the Lord motivate us for the Mission by the power of the Holy Spirit. We are almost home. I can feel it”. He echoed the words of John 14:1-3, "Let not your heart be troubled!". He called the people of God to be ready to go home. The WAD departmental directors were among the preachers deployed to the 650 campaign sites.
The three baptized people we met had a common refrain. Ngozi from Mewi, a middle-aged man, said, "I am happy with our baptism today. I discovered the truth about Jesus and the Sabbath. I feel good because my life has changed." A lady in her 40s, Chioma said, "I am very very happy. My spirit is full of joy. I thank God for baptizing me today." And a young girl named Grace, couldn’t refrain her joy, "I feel happy because now I am a full member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. I saw that there is truth in this church.”
The message was clear to the people of the area who were affected by the recent floods that left more than 25,000 Adventists without homes and possessions. Many non-reached villages have opened their doors to the Adventist message. Several companies and churches are being established.
The Division President sees that " every Union can organize such a program yearly. Evangelism will thrive in WAD and many souls will be won to the kingdom." Desiring to see this replication multiplied in all ten Unions, he encourages “all Union presidents to adopt this laudable vision of planting a hunger for souls in the hearts of every member right from the beginning of the year."
The President of West-Central Africa Division (WAD), Pastor Robert Osei-Bonsu and all the WAD departmental directors, joined ENUC and preached at the various sites.
[Photo: The Executive Governor of Abia State in Nigeria, Okezie Victor Ikpeazu]
Thus, the centennial activities are launched. The Executive Governor of Abia State in Nigeria, Okezie Victor Ikpeazu gave the official declaration. He said, "The glory of the last house will be greater than that of the former," according to Haggai 2:9, heralding a bright future for the church. Then he added, "I give glory to God. We are privileged to be part of this worldwide family that is looking forward to the return of our King Jesus Christ. If He returns today, we should be ready."
“I officially declare the centenary activities in this field open in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen !” Well-fed fireworks greeted this formal declaration. And the mass choir, made up of over 1,000 choristers sang Handel's Hallelujah.
Pastor Bassey Udoh pushed his vision further: "For these 100 years, we want to give to God one hundred thousand souls by the end of the year." In this, he can count on the support of members and pastors. Pastor Osei-Bonsu believes it can be done. "The mass baptism sent a strong signal to the members that every person must gain a soul by the end of the year. The response from members is encouraging and I believe the goal of 100,000 members by the end of the year is possible if we all work together."
This centennial celebration will be attended by General Conference President Pastor Ted Wilson. The date is set for November 2023. The Eastern Nigeria Union estimates that it will baptize at least 90,000 people. Nothing is impossible for God.
WAD Communication Director