Lagos, Nigeria - Passing the Torch

Lagos, Nieria

With more than 185 million people, Nigeria is the most heavily populated country in Africa, and has a land mass greater than Germany and France combined. This highly diverse state is home to an astonishing number of different tribes, clans, languages and cultures, and has had a tumultuous history. The land is known for its wealth of natural resources.

The average age of the population is around 17.9, making Nigeria a markedly “youthful” country. By comparison, the average age in the UK is 40.

A Megacity

It is estimated that over 17.5 million people currently live in Lagos, the city boasting the biggest population in the entire continent. Nobody knows for sure, since the count varies from day to day. Some say it could be as much as 2 million more. With the current rate of growth, it’s fair to say that Lagos will likely soon be the third-biggest city in the world.

In 1901, there were as few as 37,000 people here. By 1921, it was already 100,000, and by 1971, the population had reached 1.2 million. The population census of 2006 gave a resident count of nearly 8 million in the city centre, and a further 9 million in the surrounding federal state of Lagos. As with many of the largest metropoles around the world, massive suburbs and satellite towns have sprung up, including, naturally, a number of different slum areas.

Population Density

The population density of the city is about 18,900 people per km². That’s an extremely high ratio. In Munich, the population density is a mere 4 500 people. This ratio is even higher than, for example, Hong Kong, one of the most population-dense cities in the world.

Despite countless city infrastructure renewals, you are immediately aware of the astounding number of people when you arrive in Lagos, especially if you want to drive a car in the city centre. Non-stop, round-the-clock traffic jams are the norm here. The roads are packed with vehicles of every kind, many of them rusty and dilapidated, along with motorcycles and scooters. Whenever the traffic grinds to a halt, scores of beggars and traders swarm the vehicles and bang on the windows. There are long connecting streets that have been built as bridges over the water to the “mainland”, because there’s simply no more space in the inner city. When driving over these highway bridges, you can also see the slum areas and countless house boats covering part of the open marine bay.

The Spiritual Situation

In the last two decades – due, amongst other things, to our mighty “Millennium Campaign” in 2000 – innumerable churches and congregations, big and small, have appeared. There are also various mega-churches, with congregations numbering in the tens of thousands. The spectrum is large, and some churches and ministries now operate their own television broadcasts. Many hundreds of thousands of believers stream into the churches on Sunday. As CfaN, we are affiliated in friendship with a huge number of pastors and leaders.

On the other hand, there are still horrifically high rates of crime and corruption, alongside heartbreakingly desperate poverty and need. In this megacity, without doubt, light and darkness operate unusually close beside one another.

Bigger than Lagos 2000?

On the Sunday of our “Millennium Campaign” in 2000, 1.6 million people gathered together. It was a day that fulfilled a prophecy, spoken in February 1984 in Soweto, which said that the day would come when more than a million people would give their lives to Jesus in a single service. On that day in 2000, 1 093 000 decision cards were counted. We are sure that all of Heaven rejoiced.

Nevertheless, in 2017, we find that the Lord is encouraging us to expect even greater outcomes than that.

Unreached by the Gospel

With this gigantic harbor city booming as it is, every day sees an influx of new immigrants from many different African countries and regions. They move here in the hope of work and opportunity, to find somewhere to live, to thrive and to stay. Many come from the northern, mostly Muslim-influenced regions, and that brings a completely new generation of young people, who have since grown up here. That’s why, in this city, there are throngs of people who have never yet heard the Gospel.

It’s time to change that.

It’s time for “Lagos 2017”!

Please pray for Lagos

Prayer has very high status in the Bible. Evangelism without intercession is like dynamite without a detonator.

Intercession is not a replacement for evangelism, because they complement each other. Intercession means calling out to God on behalf of the unsaved – asking him to save them from their sins. Evangelism means telling the lost about God – calling on them to end their enmity with Him, and be reconciled to Him.

Evangelism and intercession need each other! Together, they carry the Gospel to the world.

Countless Christians in Lagos are praying with total commitment for the campaign. They really want to win Lagos for Jesus. Through your prayers, you too can play a practical, active role. The promise of the Lord holds true for you and for me:

“And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life”
(John 4:36)

If ever we needed your help in praying, it’s now!

Please pray with us for: 

  • the technical team: setting up the stage, sound system, generators, speakers, light masts, etc.
  • that the giant LED Screens will function well and enable more people to not just hear, but see what God is doing
  • protection from all attacks (including spiritual) and technical breakdowns
  • good weather: no rain or strong wind, no extreme heat or dust, no weather that prevents people from attending the meetings
  • many hundreds of thousands of real, life-changing conversions
  • bountiful healings to follow the preaching of the Word, confirming the truth of the Gospel
  • liberty for those who are trapped in animism, witchcraft, curses, doubt and all manifestations of the evil one
  • effective and engaging follow-up, quickly integrating new Christians into strong churches in their areas
  • and please pray urgently for the release of the necessary financial resources 

The only light

People are either in darkness or in light. That is how God sees the world. In Christ we are in the light; without Christ we are in darkness. The gospel light is not just a better light. It is the only light. Jesus is the light of the world – no one else. He is the absolute Absolute. 

For God, who said, Let light shine out of darkness, made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6)

Four things are critical for this Campaign

Reinhard Bonnke is returning to Lagos one more time. Together with Daniel Kolenda and Peter Vandenberg, his primary goal is to pass the torch to the next generation of local evangelists, ushering in the start of the “Double Harvest Decade”. We’re excited about the premiere of our new, giant LED screens. With these screens, vastly more visitors will be able to see the preacher on the stage and witness the healing testimonies for themselves. Huge and heartfelt thanks to all those who donated!

Countless numbers of our Nigerian brethren from local churches are also preparing themselves to win the people of Lagos for Jesus. Everywhere in the city, posters are being hung and flyers distributed. In the daily newspapers, on the radio, and through every possible social media channel, people are hearing the news about the event. And most important of all are the personal visits and invitations to the campaign. To accomplish this goal, the participating churches have created “Operation Andrew”. Every member of every church is encouraged to invite at least 10 unsaved family members, friends and acquaintances.

Of all the many tasks that we face, these four are critical for us:

1. A field for hundreds of thousands of people

The enormous campaign venue must be prepared for the massive crowds expected. The task is not be underestimated. Take this into consideration, the campaign ground must be a huge area that, in this overcrowded metropole, has somehow not been built on, is available for our use, and at the same time, easily accessible by traffic. This is a very real challenge in a region where practically every piece of land is either built on, or being used for agriculture.

Our West Africa team, led by John Darku, spent a long time seeking a suitable site that had not been covered in informal slum shacks. The disadvantage of the ground we have chosen, and why it was still available, is that it lies in a wet, swampy area. There was no choice but to do extensive preparation, and in places, to dry out the ground. That’s something our team has plenty of experience with, but it takes a certain amount of time. Nevertheless, we are convinced that the positioning makes this an excellent choice of venue. Our goal is not to avoid hard work upfront, but rather to have a venue that is easily reachable for people coming from every direction.

2. Premiere in Lagos: Not just hearing, but also seeing!

All the technical equipment, including the stage, the speakers, the lights, the giant LED screens, the masts and the necessary tech to control it all, must be brought to the site and installed. We shipped some of the equipment that we have on hand in East Africa, all the way to West Africa – the size of this event means we need the extra equipment, but we’ve avoided extra costs by not buying anything new.

3. Now that you are saved

Millions of follow-up booklets had to be transported to the site. To secure enough of the booklets in time, months before Lagos 2017 and the campaigns to follow, we ordered a total of 6 million “Now that you are saved” booklets.

Each one of these 32-page booklets contains a decision card and duplicate, which is filled in and signed personally by each person who decides to accept Jesus as their Saviour. The cards are collected and passed on to the follow-up committee of participating local churches, for further processing. The booklet contains important advice for the first steps of faith.

The “Now that you are saved” booklets are a vital component of CfaN’s evangelistic campaigns and the definitive key to truly effective follow-up work.

500 booklets - including print, transport, warehousing and distribution – cost only 100 euros.

The follow-up is a vital stepping-stone to bring new converts into lively, biblically-sound churches. That’s why all counsellors are trained and prepared for this important work. During the meetings, counsellors are strategically placed in the crowd throughout the arena. Each one of them carries some follow-up booklets with them. Immediately after the altar call and the salvation prayer, they hand these to new converts standing nearby, counsel them and help them to fill out the decision cards.

4. Urgently needed now: your intercession and your financial help

Prayer has very high status in the Bible. Evangelism without intercession is like dynamite without a detonator.

Intercession is not a replacement for evangelism, because they complement each other. Intercession means calling out to God on behalf of the unsaved – asking him to save them from their sins. Evangelism means telling the lost about God – calling on them to end their enmity with Him, and be reconciled to Him.

Evangelism and intercession need each other! Together, they carry the Gospel to the world.

Countless Christians in Lagos are praying with total commitment for the campaign. They really want to win Lagos for Jesus. Through your prayers, you too can play a practical, active role. The promise of the Lord holds true for you and for me:

“And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life”
(John 4:36)

If ever we needed your help in praying, it’s now!

Please pray with us for: 

  • the technical team: setting up the stage, sound system, generators, speakers, light masts, etc.
  • protection from all attacks (including spiritual) and technical breakdowns
  • good weather: no rain or strong wind, no extreme heat or dust, no weather that prevents people from attending the meetings
  • many hundreds of thousands of real, life-changing conversions
  • bountiful healings to follow the preaching of the Word, confirming the truth of the Gospel
  • liberty for those who are trapped in animism, witchcraft, curses, doubt and all manifestations of the evil one
  • effective and engaging follow-up, quickly integrating new Christians into strong churches in their areas
  • and please pray urgently for the release of the necessary financial resources 

Evangelist Bonnke's Farewell Campaign Begins

Dear Mission Partners,

We just returned from the first meeting of the Reinhard Bonnke Farewell Campaign here in Lagos, Nigeria. Hundreds of the top spiritual leaders from all over Africa are present as well as nearly 400 international guests that have come with our group. It truly is a historic moment as we celebrate 50 years of Evangelist Bonnke’s ministry in Africa. We look forward to many more years of Gospel impact here and around the world as a ministry.

Tonight, Evangelist Bonnke preached a powerful and clear evangelistic message. It was such a joy to hear him preach the Gospel on African soil again. Many thousands responded to the invitation and many were healed. Services were broadcast across the nation and around the world on social media as well as many Christian Television outlets.

We need your prayers this week. In meetings this size, everything is being stretched to the limit. There are many challenges including a very wet and swampy field. Please pray that the rain would not fall on that ground anymore this week. Also, please pray for protection for our large group, an outpouring of notable miracles, and a massive harvest of souls.

Although this campaign is Evangelist Bonnke’s final African campaign, it is only the beginning of what I believe will be a decade of super massive harvests for Christ for all Nations. The Lord has given me the word of a “Decade of Double Harvest.” Now it begins. The best is yet to come!

Yours in the Gospel,

Daniel Kolenda

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda
Together with Reinhard Bonnke and the whole CfaN team

Pictures by O. Volyk

Reinhard Bonnke Preaches for the Last Time in Africa

Dear Mission Partners,

We have just returned from a very special and very emotional service. Tonight, Evangelist Reinhard Bonnke preached the Gospel for the last time on African soil after 50 years of powerful ministry. His wife, Anni and his children were with him on the platform. Our national directors and many ministry friends from all over the world were there to be a part of the historic moment. More than 1.7 million people attended the five days of meetings. Countless miracles took place and many thousands of salvations were recorded. I cannot imagine a more fitting way to celebrate 50 years of Evangelist Bonnke’s ministry than with one more massive harvest of souls in Africa. It was truly a remarkable and historic event. It will stand out in my memory as one of the most precious days in my life.

We faced an unusual level of resistance this week – such as I have not experienced in my time with the ministry. But the Lord spoke to us clearly that what we were experiencing was birthing pangs. Although this campaign was Evangelist Bonnke’s Farewell in Africa, it is really just the beginning of something new and wonderful. God has given me the vision for a “Decade of Double Harvest.” I believe that over the next decade, we will see another 75-million people won to Christ and tonight was the beginning. No wonder we are feeling the pangs of birth. I will share more specifics on this in the days to come, but for now it is enough to say we are on the threshold of “even greater” things. As Evangelist Bonnke has often said, “Nothing diminishes in God.”

This also marks the last campaign of the year.  As we approach the end of one year and the beginning of another, I am so thankful for those of you that have stood with us so faithfully through your prayers and giving. Please continue to stand with us as we enter this new season of harvest. All hands are needed on deck. The best is yet to come. We love and appreciate each one of you.

Yours in the Gospel

Daniel Kolenda

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda
Together with Reinhard Bonnke and the whole CfaN team

Re-watch the live streams here

Day 1 Gospel Campaign

Day 2 Fire Conference

Day 2 Gospel Campaign

Day 3 Fire Conference

Day 3 Gospel Campaign

Day 4 Fire Conference

Day 4 Gospel Campaign

 

Day 5 Gospel Campaign

Gallery