Pastor Festus Babatunde Taiwo was the Minister in Charge of the C& S Unification, The Lord is Good, Ogba, Ikeja, Lagos, until January 2020 when God asked him to move on. He has since piloted the establishment of the Throne of Grace Model Church, an arm of the Cherubim & Seraphim Movement Church Worldwide, operative under the Palace of Joy District with her district headquarters in the USA. He tells ADURA INTERNATIONAL MAGAZINE why he is not afraid to start his ministry afresh
When did this ministry start and when did God put it in your heart to leave The Lord is Good Parish of the Cherubim & Seraphim Unification Church as the resident pastor?
I started ministry in 1992 and was known then as Divine Echo Ministries. It was commissioned by God as a revivalist and crusade ministry and we then started with my group then. We went from state to state ministering with signs and wonders. Later, the Divine Echo Ministries metamorphosed into Hours of Grace Outreach Ministry while I was a pastor in the English Chapel of the C&S Movement Church, Surulere District. So, in 1999, Hours of Grace started as a Tuesday morning programme, and then I re-engineered my outreach crusade programme. I was sent into many villages and God was with us confirming His works with notable signs and wonders. In the year 2010, God released me from Ayo Ni O Surulere District to go and pastor C&S Unification Church, the Lord is Good, Ogba with confirmation and permission of Prophet Dr Gabriel O. Fakeye, who released me with prayers. When I was going to The Lord is Good, Ogba, God told me that I had limited years to spend there and that he would be leading me into the next phase in the ministry. So, four years ago, I was told by God that I had one year to leave the church at Ogba. But I was so much involved and deeply in love with the church that I didn’t see anything that would warrant my leaving at that time. Exactly when it was a year after, God started telling me to leave but I was adamant until in the month of January 2020, towards the end of the month actually, God ordered me out of the place to focus on the ministry He has placed in my care.
What were the high points of your time as the pastor in your former church?
The high point of my pastoral time at the Lord is Good Church, Ogba, was in 2012 and 2013 when the church experienced a congregation explosion due to the fulfilment of a church growth programme that God gave me. We had the programme twice and that gave us the explosion and the glory we enjoyed today.
What’s the special mandate God has given you in this new commission?
The Throne of Grace Model Church is an arm of the Cherubim & Seraphim Movement Church Worldwide, operative under the Palace of Joy District with her district headquarters in the United States of America. The church is a model of what a New Testament Church should be. We are a church without limitations and a church with a passion for the lost souls and biblical teachings. We are out to uplift all the biblical standards. A church that teaches, practice and usher strictly to all the biblical doctrines such as salvation, uncompromised holiness, sanctification, justification, and redemption, among others. We are a church that is disciplined in all ramifications. We believe in the Ministry of the Holy Spirit. We are a church that believes in the governing, leading and directions of the Holy Spirit and not man-made doctrines that are anti-biblical or at variance with the dispensation of Grace and the Holy Spirit. We are a disciple-making-disciples church. A church that believes in the virgin birth, works, death, resurrection and the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Also, we are a church that prepares her congregation unblemished, without wrinkles and spotless for the coming of the groom and the rapture of the church. A church whose vision is to have the world as her congregation while the heart of the individual is her pulpit. We are a church that is poised at raising heavenly-conscious, spiritual strategists and a gallant spiritual army of Christ that will be at the warfare front. We are a spiritual warfare church that believes in using the Biblical authority to cast out demons, heal the sick and shatter the shackles and fetters of the devil. We are a prototype of the New Testament Church as in the days of the Apostles. We are a church beyond the limit of the four corners of the building; a church without limit. We are gospel in practice and outreaching in nature. We are a church that cares. We are a church that believes in teaching the total Word of God to humanity. We are a church that teaches, practices and live the Bible. We are a church that values and treasures souls of people we are sent to. So, we preach salvation as our central message all the time. We teach and uphold Bible doctrines such as salvation, redemption, adoption, justification, sanctification, and restitution, among others. We are a church that believes and encourages the manifestation of the fruits and gifts of the Holy Spirit. We are a church that upholds the cores and values of God’s purpose for mankind.
What would you like to see changed in the C&S church?
I would love to see the C&S Church becoming evangelical in nature; to be a bible-based church. I want to see all the man-made doctrines that put our church behind in the commity of global churches jettisoned. I want to see our church working the titles we accumulated. Let the prophets be bible-based, that is to be sound biblically. I want to see the church on the global map while making an impact and imparting our world
What’s the programme of your new commission for the youth?
My new commission believes that for any church or ministry to make any meaningful impact in this generation and the coming ones, we must create a platform where all youths would be free to worship without any hindrance and set back via unbiblical doctrines and traditions of the elders that have made the C&S alien to our youths and children.
How would you manage a situation where some members of your former church may want to follow you to your new ministry, a development that may trigger unnecessary bad blood?
I have resolved in my mind that none of the members (of The Lord is Good Church, Ogba) would be allowed to follow me (to my new church). When I left Ayo Ni O Surulere District, none of the members followed me. I can say it with pride that the congregation of The Lord is Good Church, Ogba, was built from zero. I did not scatter, tear or cart away any member from any denomination. It was purely evangelical driven programmes that God gave me for the environment that built up the congregation to such a powerful level.
So, I have always said that I am not afraid to start afresh. If actually God has called me into this new commission, He will prove Himself and back my callings. I don’t need to unmake a congregation to make mine. The Lord is Good is my church till tomorrow and I am still a member forever. Supt. Gen. Ap. Hon. Dr Dave Salako is my father for life. I can’t run down what I have laboured, toiled and suffered to build for 9 years, two months.
What does your commission believe in?
My new commission believes that for any church or ministry to make any meaningful impact in this generation and the coming one, we have to provide a platform where all youths would be free to worship without any hindrance and setback via unbiblical doctrines and traditions of the elders that have made the C&S alien to our youths and children.
What challenges have you faced since embarking on this new commission, sir?
The only challenge we are faced with is the people that find it difficult to accept our new way of worship which they feel is alien to the C&S tradition. Apart from that, there is nothing serious that God hasn’t been able to handle.
Kindly describe the new mode of worship?
In the Throne of Grace Model Parish, we don’t allow anybody to sit on the altar; we don’t separate men from women; women menstrual cycle is never used as a basis to debar them from worshipping in the church. We don’t believe in the observation of the Lenten season.
Lenten or lent is not in the bible. It is also not a command; it was initiated by the Catholic Church, not by the Apostles or Jesus Himself. Anything or doctrine we can’t defend biblically or have a biblical answer to will not be practised in our ministry.
The C&S unification campus fellowship is 40 this year. What’s your thought about how far God has brought the church?
We still pray that they keep on waxing stronger; I
love what they are doing. They have helped to retain many youths in the fold;
they have groomed leaders, great preachers and uncompromising bible teachers.
They have a solid foundation and a very good platform. Their template is
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