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World’s Largest Church Is In Lagos
After about 25 years of construction work, the multimillion Naira National Temple of The Apostolic Church Nigeria, TAC, touted as the largest church in the world, was inaugurated in Lagos. Sited at the international ground of the Church in Ketu, the temple has a sitting capacity of 100,000 worshippers at a time.
The national president of The Apostolic Church, TAC, and the chairman of LAWNA, Pastor Gabriel Olutola described the temple as “The House built with prayer,” stressing that it is a symbol of the church’s unification.
Olutola said the church is a show of the sterling qualities of the pioneer LAWNA chairman, late Pastor Samuel Adegboyega who laid the foundation some 26 years ago. He says it is the building committee, the national executive council of TAC and all the church members that should be hailed for their financial and spiritual support.
The National President of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Pastor Ayo Oritstejafor dedicated the temple second door
The LAWNA president traced the genesis of the imposing cathedral to August 4, 1957 when Pastor Isaiah Sakpo received a prophecy about the building of a national temple for the church. The foundation laying ceremony for the project took place during his leadership of LAWNA.
However, after the foundation was laid by his predecessor on May 10, 1986, it had almost become a reproach to the church because of the ugly sight it created in such a prominent area of Lagos. When Pastor Samuel Jemigbon came on board, he decided to take this reproach away.
He created a separate department for the national temple project with qualified accountants and other experienced professionals to supervise the work.
According to Olutola: “We were on this project and at a point we met a contractor who promised to complete the work for us for N14.3 million. We gave him an advance of N5 million but he did not do one quarter of the job before he started demanding for another N5 million which is a clear indication that N40 million would not finish the job. We spent almost N27 million on the painting alone.
Olutola who could not tell the exact cost of completing the edifice, however, told a-worship-place that the floor tiles alone gulped about N143 million.
“I will need the assistance of the accountants who would do a lot of mathematics for us to get the whole amount because by the time we wanted to paint, we discovered that there were some errors with the pillars and the walls. And we have to engage another contractor who came to perfect the job and what we thought would cost us between 300,000 and 600,000, cost us N2.3 million.
“There were other minor jobs like that which made us to spend much more than we originally budgeted for. We had to lay cables for our public address systems separately, lighting and video,” he stated.
The land on which the National Temple is situated was bought by the first LAWNA Territorial Chairman, the late Pastor S. G. Adegboyega. In 1969, the Annual LAWNA Convention was held at Orishigun because Ebute Metta could no longer contain the people/saints coming for the Convention. In 1970, the Convention was moved to the present LAWNA Grounds. In 1976, LAWNA started to hold the Annual Conventions in what is now known as the Old Convention Hall.
In 1979, the late Pastor S. G. Adegboyega first LAWNA Territorial Chairman laid the foundation of what was to be the National Temple. It was in 1986 that the second LAWNA Territorial Chairman ,the late Pastor I. G. Sakpo laid the foundation of what is today known and acclaimed as National Temple. From 1994 the Lord mightily used his successor Late Pastor S. S. Jemigbon to advance the superstructure.
To the Glory of God , The National Temple was completed and dedicated on 19th November 2011. The National President of The Apostolic Church, TAC, and the chairman of LAWNA, Pastor Gabriel Olutola thanked God who enabled them to complete the temple. He described the temple as “The House built with prayer,” stressing that it is a symbol of the church’s unification.
Sited at the international ground of the Church in Olrunda, Ketu, Lagos , the National temple has a sitting capacity of 100,000 worshippers at a time.
Origins – The Work in Penygroes
In the years 1904-05 a revival known as “The Welsh Revival” broke out in Wales. An evangelist, Evan Roberts, full of the Holy Ghost, was ministering the word of God with wonderful results. News was spreading like fire telling people about the revival in Loughor, and that it had reached the Amman Valley. A group of people met one night in Penygroes, a small, quiet village in Carmarthenshire (Dyfed) at the Independent Chapel. They were discussing the news of this revival. After a while the minister, Pastor William Bowen, said they should meet with other churches in the village and hold prayer meetings so that they themselves would be prepared for the revival. In this group was a man named D. P Williams, who suggested inviting Evans Roberts to preach in the village. After a few times in prayer, things began to happen.
The revival began to sweep through Penygroes and many in the Independent Chapel became changed. They received experiences never known in the church before. But there were also those who had the new experience had to leave the Chapel. This is where we leave the Independent Chapel and stay with the new group. This was only a beginning to years of difficult experiences. This group of people then built a mission hail where they met together for a while. In this group was the man suggested inviting the revivalist. He was D. P Williams, who accepted salvation on the 25th December 1904 and it is said that previous to his conversion he had a wild nature. But now God had control of his life and was going to use him in the days that lay ahead. Now this group of believers met in the mission haIl having fellowship together and some of the members went to different conventions at Landrindod, Keswick and Sunderland and while there they heard of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and they wanted to know more about it.
At the same time about 1907-08, D. P Williams was on holiday in a place called Aberaryon. He was praying with a group of people and the Holy Spirit fell and for the first time he spoke with other tongues. Yet another experience to be received in the mission hall. It was also about this time the Lord spoke to D. P. Williams, saying: “It is I the Lord thy God, that hath led thee, young servant, into this place. In a mysterious way I have brought thee here, for My purposes concerning thee are great and shall be marvelous in the eyes of many. My hand have I laid upon thee for a work not revealed unto thee. Chosen art thou by the Lord thy God to gather My sheep, for verily scattered they are upon the mountains of Israel . I hear them bleating saith the Lord, but I will gather them and thou shalt shepherd them. There shall be one fold and many flocks. If thou wilt obey my voice I will send thee unto them. The Performance of My word shall be sure concerning thee if thou wilt hearken to the word that I have spoken unto thee this day, saith the lord” During this time a split was again to be found in the mission shall because of this new Holy Spirit experience and those who accepted it had to find fresh premises.
So they met in the building known as the “Band Hall” and the Lord spoke to them saying “if they persecuted Me, they will persecute you, before the sun will set this day, I will send to you a man offering you a room with an open door. It is there I would have you to meet for your evening service and I will be with you”. that day a man visited them and gave them the use of a room in the village school, where they met for awhile. Before long the membership had risen to over 80 people and they moved into a new building called “BABELLY Y CYFARFOD” (Tabernacle of the Congregation). At this time they were in contact and fellowship with a group of people from Bournemouth, known as the Apostolic Faith Mission, their Pastor being Apostle Williams Hutchinson. They met together and through this D. P Williams was ordained as an Apostle and put in charge of the work in Penygroes: and D. P Williams brother W. Jones Williams, who was saved after the Lord spoke to him through Pastor D. P Williams, was set apart as a prophet. After a while Pastor D. P Williams ands W. J. Williams went to Bournemouth to the Apostolic faith Mission, and attended a meeting there The Lord spoke to Pastor D. P Williams and his brother, telling them “ALL APOSTLES ARE EQUAL IN CALLING” and they broke off the relationship and fellowship with the Apostolic faith Mission.
In 1916 the Lord told Pastor D. P Williams and his brother to start afresh, calling the fellowship The Apostolic Church Penygroes was the headquarters of this new fellowship and from here the vision spread like fire to other parts of the country and it was in 1917, one year after the new starting point, that the Lord spoke concerning the people from other lands and those of dark skin coming to the mount. This of course, has since been wonderfully fulfilled. At an earlier date, August 1913, in Bournemouth , the Lord spoke through Pastor Williams saying “CARMANIA, CARMANIA. A ship I see sailing and some of you on board of that ship sailing to another land”. In 1922, August 3Ist, Pastor D. P Williams, Turnbull and F Hodges and W J. Williams boarded a ship was CARMANIA”. God is true to His word, He will perform it.
The church in Penygroes eventually linked up with Glasgow in 1919, with Hereford in 1920 and with Bradford in 1922, and they all came in unity under one name, The Apostolic Church . There are many other instances and examples of how God moved in the village of Penygroes. Pastors D. P Williams and W. J. Williams are only two men used by God at that time in that area, Other men used by God at that time to bring His purpose to pass were Pastor t Jon es (Llwynhendy). Pastors J. 0. Jones, W. H. Lewis, T. V. Lewis and J. Purnell.
The Apostolic Church has occupied an enviable position on the ecclesiastical list in Nigeria. It is one of the foremost Pentecostal settings in the nation, borne out of the untiring efforts of the early church fathers at home and white missionaries from the United Kingdom in 1931.
We believe in the Personal Testimony of Salvation in Jesus Christ which means deliverance from the power and penalty of sin. It covers all that Jesus Christ has done and will do for us. For “there is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” Romans 8:1-2.
We welcome you in the Name of the Father , the Son and the Holy Spirit to a-worship-place portal. We encourage you to take advantage of the numerous resources availble to you on this site and pray that you will be blessed beyond measure as you commit and partake in the work of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour. Amen.
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