1. Christian Oyakhilome was born on December 7, 1961 to the family of Elder T.E Oyakhilome who was one of the pioneers of the Assemblies of God Church (AG) in Benin City and major parts of the old Mid-Western Region of Nigeria. He is an Esan from Edo State.
2. Chris Oyakhilome conducted his first crusade at the age of 9.
3. On completion of his secondary education at the Edo College, Benin City, he spent his vacation as a bookstore attendant, selling books at the reknowned Faith Miracle Centre opposite Benin Airport pastored by Rev Benson Idahosa of the Church of God Missions Int’l Incorporated (CGMI).
4. He got admitted into the old Bendel State University established by late Governor Ambrose Alli (now Ambrose Alli University) when it was established in 1981 and studied Architecture.
5. As an undergraduate, he established a fellowship known as Youths For Christ (YFC), notable among the leaders was another student, Tom Amenkhienan who was the leader of the choir. Anita Ebodaghe and her friend, Joy were members of the choir who soon married both Chris and Tom. YFC soon became one of the largest fellowships on Campus in Ekpoma.
6. By 1989, Chris Oyakhilome established the ministry known as Believers Loveworld inc (BLW) and named her church arm Christ Embassy with headquarters in Lagos. He got married to Anita on February 2nd 1991.
7. Six months before he passed on, Benson Idahosa told Chris Oyakhilome to invite him to a program in BLW before March 14th. Benson Idahosa died unexpectedly on March 12.
8. By 2002, BLW had become the most prominent Christian ministry on television in not just Nigeria but all over the African Continent with her Atmosphere for Miracles. Nigerian former President, Olusegun Obasanjo through the NBC in May 2004 stopped the airing of miracles on Television, an action that was largely seen by Pastor Chris as targeting Christ Embassy and subsequently took the matter to court.
9. Earlier in 2003, Pastor Chris pioneered the first 24 hour Christian satellite network broadcasting from Africa worldwide.
10. Christ Embassy is one of the 5 largest indigenously established ‘Pentecostal’ churches in Nigeria and perhaps Africa today however Pastor Chris does not agree with the appellation ‘Pentecostal Church’?
11. The Rhapsody of Realities by Pastor Chris translated in 837 languages in 242 countries and domains is widely considered as the most popular devotional in the world. He has authored over 21 books.
12. The Inner City Missions of BLW is a program held to feed the poor in the suburbs and slums of Africa.
13. The Loveworld Convocation Arena (LCA) is a 17,000 capacity auditorium built by Christ Embassy and is one of the largest church auditoria in Africa.
14. Pastor Chris has conducted some of the largest Christian crusades in the world till date. The Port Harcourt as well as the FNB Johannesburg crusades were said to have hosted crowds of about 2.5 million people according to Pastor Chris.
15. More than any ministry, Christ Embassy has touched the music scene of Christianity today producing gospel music ministers such as Sinach, Joe Praize, Samsong, Buchi, Jahdiel, Eben and Frank Edwards among many others.
16. Today, Christ Embassy has about 3,500 branches in about 5 continents of the world.
17. In 2011, Forbes Magazine alluded that Chris Oyakhilome is one of the richest pastors in the world.
18. Pastor Chris has 2 daughters named Sharon and Charlane.
19. Believers Loveworld owns numerous properties in Lagos, a campground on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway as well as another on the Benin –Sapele Expressway which usually holds Atmosphere for Miracles and Higher Life Conferences.
20. In January 2014, Pastor Chris Oyakhilome PhD donated a 650 capacity auditorium to his alma mater, Ambrose Alli University while also donating N1 Billion (about $3 million) to Benson Idahosa University (BIU) to build her engineering faculty. The faculty has been named Chris Oyakhilome Faculty of Engineering, BIU.
21. Though he is a protégé of the late Archbishop Benson Idahosa, Pastor Chris is not a member of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) pioneered by Idahosa and others.
22. December 7 every year, the birthday of Pastor Chris, is commemorated as ‘OFFER 7’ in BLW, it is the day members of BLW and all others blessed by the ministry of Pastor Chris Oyakhilome are encouraged to offer a seed into the life of the clergyman fondly referred to as ‘Our Man of God’.
The AFRICAN APOSTLES
Patriarchs and Pacesetters
by Oluwaleke Beecroft