By Sam Eyoboka
THE celebration of multiple jubilee by the National President of Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, provided an opportunity by eminent Nigerians including President Goodluck Jonathan; ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo; Senate President David Mark; Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim and several other political juggernauts within and outside the country to extol his virtues.
Goodwill messages also came from international quarters as Tony Blair Faith Foundation; renowned televangelist, Dr. Morris Cerullo; traditional rulers including the Olu of Warri, Orodje of Okpe; Gbong Gwong Jos, Ovie r’Uvwie Kingdom as well as colleagues on the pulpit including the General Overseer of The Redeemed Chrustian Church of God, RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye; Dr. Uma Ukpai; Archbishop Margret Benson-Idahosa of the Church of God Mission; the presiding bishop of The Redeemed Evangelical Mission, TREM, Dr. Mike Okonkwo among others.
Other corporate organisations that extolled the virtues of the celebrants included inspirational satellite broadcast stations, Trinity Broadcasting Network, TBN; DAYSTAR Television; African Broadcasting Network, ABN, and several other religious bodies and organisations.
Pastor Oritsejafor is celebrating 40 years in ministry, 25th anniversary of the Word of Life Bible Church and his birthday in addition to the annual convention of the Word of Life Bible Church at the church headquarters in Warri,DeltaState. The 10-day spiritual event scheduled for November 9 to Sunday, November 18 actually kicked of with a novelty football match featuring retired Super Eagles players against some lads at the Warri Township Stadium on November 3,
In his goodwill message on behalf of the government and people ofNigeria, President Jonathan said the CAN president had remained unwavering and unrepentant in confronting every manifestation of evil in our land with holy boldness.
He said: “Your leadership of the Body of Christ in our nation as president of CAN has been marked by exceptional courage and forthrightness in fighting for the entrenchment of peace, security, justice and equity for all. Your venture into the realm of philanthropy has seen you positively touch and bring succour to countless lives. You have also invested enormous energy and resources into the educational sector, providing quality education for numerous children across the country.”
Senate President said Oritsejafor’s life of mentoring at the Word of Life Bible Church in particular and the Christian Association of Nigeria in general “is a clear testimony of your great zeal and commitment in advancing the gospel of light to liberate the troubled world.”
Delta State governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, in his letter, has reasons to thank God considering the monumental contributions of Pastor Oritsejafor to the growth and development of the Christian faith in Nigeria and indeed globally, adding that the cleric had positively influenced the society and his administration.
In a letter, Mr. Tony Blair congratulated Oritsejafor for the rich harvest of the vibrant and growing Word of Life Bible Church, praying that his works may bear fruit in the future so that “the peace and love of our Lord Jesus Christ prevail over dissension, intolerance and hatred, and respect and understanding be given to the different faiths that enrich the life of Nigeria.”
President/Founders of TBN, Paul and Jan Crouch commended the celebrant for his outstanding service to the Body of Christ, certain that his many sacrifices and untiring service in God’s Kingdom are very much appreciated by all those who have benefited from his ministry. “Thank you for your faithful proclamation of the “glad tidings of good things,” throughout your many years of service.
Marcus Lamb, founder/president of Daystar Television Network, said in the last 40 years of visionary leadership, the charismatic preacher had done what Apostle Paul admonished those preachers to do. “You have been faithful in your devotion to the Lord and your calling in regard to the ministries of caring for God’s people and leading them Godward to healing and wholeness. The evidence of your faithfulness are seen in the blessings that you and your people have experienced over these 40 years.”
From the traditional stable came words of prayers for the cleric as the Olu of Warri likened Oritsejafor’s 40 years in ministry to the role 40 played in the life of Biblical Moses’ 40 years, saying that he had “served the God you love for 40 years now, this year portends to be the beginning of many more years of service for the good Lord, as Moses of the generation in our national life.”
Pastor Adeboye believes that in the last 40 years, Pastor Oritsejafor had “declared with power, boldness and authority, the living word of God with signs and wonders following. The president of CAN is a special child of God and a great blessing to us all. We thank God for his sterling leadership qualities.”
He wished Oritsejafor many more years of soldering for Christ with lasting impactful results to mankind.
The Archbishop of Church of GodMission, Most Rev. Margaret Benson-Idahosa prayed that Oritsejafor’s “voice would not grow faint! Your foothold will not grow weak! You shall remain a beacon of light and hope to your world. Generations to come will see your footprints and bless heaven for the day the Lord found you and gave you a mandate.”