Why churches should embrace rural evangelism, crusade - Clerics

By Boluwatife Oparinde

Clerics have raised the need for more grassroot engagements for church outreaches, evangelism and crusades in order to forestall the propagation of idolatry and witchcraft in the rural environments.

Speaking in separate interviews with CAC News, the Secretary, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Iwere'le Chapter, Reverend Z. Adeteju; Evangelism Coordinator, CAN Iwere'le Chapter, Evangelist Ezekiel Babarinde; and the Minister in Charge, Heaven's Expectation Evangelical Ministry, Sagamu, Ogun State, Pastor Sunday O. Ogundare, made this known in the light of the just concluded 2022 Iwere'le Crusade, held in Iwere Ile Community, Iwajowa LGA, Oyo State.

Speaking on the impacts of the Iwere'le crusade while making a call for its continuity, he said, "we have seen several positive impacts spiritually. We have seen many conversions from idolatry to Christianity. We have seen many who were only religious but have received the light of the gospel. We have seen many under the bondage of Satan set free."

"As a body, CAN is very glad about this move. This crusade has become a convention for us. We are receiving spiritual and physical benefits. Many have called us from far and near, giving us reports of the crusade. This crusade, being uncommon, has become a model for other local governments," he continued.

Speaking on the turnout of people, the cleric admitted that there hasn't been such a huge turnout in any other local church meetings where people are also not punctual, but "the turnout for this crusade shows that God really has a hand in it. As I have said, we desire that this programme become a quarterly programme."

According to Rev'd Adeteju, "The gospel is now reaching places it couldn't reach before. If you were here ten years ago, you would know that God has given more grounds for the gospel on this land through programmes like this. God has really suppressed the power and worship of idols on this ground through these crusades and revivals. We are still trusting God for more."

On the same note, Evangelist Ezekiel Babarinde stated that, "the Iwere'le crusade, organized by Pastor Oke is giving progression to the gospel in this land, and it has also served as a platform that brings all the churches on this land together. You would also observe that our people are so much enjoying the programme that they want it to be more than once in a year, however, I had to explain to them its cost implication."

Expressing that the Kings of the community and surrounding communities are receptive to Christian activities in the land, the Iwere'le CAN Evangelism Coordinator noted that, "there are several positive changes we have witnessed since this crusade was brought home to us. Since its inception, we have witnessed many souls saved, and among them are persons who are established in churches." 

Pastor Sunday O. Ogundare, who has been a minister at the Iwere'le crusade since its inception four years ago, cited that "specifically, after the revival in 2019, there was a man whom God healed from a mental illness, among several testimonies that people have shared, and that made us more confident that Christ Himself had come ahead of us to this land. 

"We have witnessed commitment and huge turnout from people per day. This proves that the ministry and programme here is fruitful, and we are trusting God for more of it," he said.

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