Greater Evangelism World Crusade (GEWC), which was founded on Saturday, September 9, 1972, has lived and worked assiduously for 45 years, in the course of which period, the ministry’s, founding father, Apostle Geoffrey Dabibi Numbere received his glorious home call on 15th October, 2014. Its members deemed it necessary to mark the 45th Anniversary with a 4-day programme (7th – 10th September 2017), which was attended by well-wishers also.
As members and well-wishers thronged the world headquarters of the ministry in Rukpokwu, along Port Harcourt International Airport Road in Rivers State on September 7, the Chairman, Central Planning Committee of the Anniversary, Pastor (Dr) Apele Iyagba, in his welcome address said, “the anniversary is significant in three ways: celebrations, motivation and receiving of God’s blessings and promises”.
The International Director of the ministry, Pastor Isaac Olori, who was consecrated as successor to Apostle Numbere on December 14, 2014, presented the keynote address and kick-started the Anniversary celebrations with a charge on the burdens of the present generation of Greater Crusaders in particular and Christians in general .
He identified the burdens as building on the foundation laid by our founding father, Apostle Numbere; maintaining the evangelical spirit (our trade mark); sacrificing our resources – time, talent, money, energy, etc, in the service of God; standing up for the truth of God’s word and the burden of shining as light in these evil days.
Noting that the 45th Anniversary year’s theme of the ministry is “Disciples Indeed” (John 8:31), the man of God said, “as we enter into another ministry year, we shall not only press forward on the pathway of discipleship but also focus more strongly on giving ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word (Acts 6:4).
As part of the Anniversary programme, seminars were held on: “Disciples Like the Master” by Pastor Dotimi Amatare (from Jos); “The Place of Faithful Men in Sustaining a Vision” by Bishop Winston Iwo and “A Disciple and His Prayer Life” by Pastor Kenneth Otuokere.
A special talk on “Landmark Events of Greater Evangelism World Crusade: The Journey So Far” was delivered by the widow of Apostle Numbere and President, Greater Evangelism Women Fellowship International, Pastor (Dr) Mrs Nonyem Numbere.
Interludes of entertainment were provided during group performances by men, women, children/teens fellowships. Others were the Central Choir, Kibangha Gokana Zonal Choir, Greater Evangelism Nursery and Primary Schools pupils. The rest group performers were the Ogba, Andoni, Kalabari and Ikwerre brethren, respectively.
On the grand finale of the Anniversary celebrations, Olori called on Christians to trust that the Almighty God would prosper His people. Making the assurance, he charged the congregation to key into the vision of lifting men up spiritually.
The international director, who based his sermon on Nehemiah 2:20 and 3: 1-5, exhorted Christians to arise and build for spiritual prosperity. He stressed on zealous participation in the important work of evangelism for the saving and restoration of souls.
For success in this endeavour, the cleric urged the congregation to look up to the God who called Apostle Numbere and be encouraged amidst challenges of life.
“Though the vision of the Ministry and the tasks ahead are tall, the God of Heaven will prosper you, the spirit of Caleb is always available and so you shall make steady progress”, he added.
The international director further advised Christians on the importance of the spirit of service in the lives of servants of God, in order to ensure spiritual prosperity.
“Participate in God’s work, do not give excuses or complaints, remain faithful and dedicated to the service of God. There is a memorial record in heaven where no labourer goes un-rewarded; so, everyone must participate for the sake of furthering the work primarily and for their own good, secondarily”, he concluded.
The 4-day programme was ably conducted by Evangelists Kingsley Godpower and Lawrence Hart as well as Pastors Alex Ogoloma and Ibim Alabrama, respectively.
The spirit of devotion and dedication could be felt moving when the voices of participants reverberated in the full-capacity auditorium during the singing of the congregational hymn: “O God Our Help In Ages Past.”
Responding to the event, some participants stated their impressions to The Tide.
Elder (Hon.) Sampson Egop of Rumuomasi branch of the ministry said, “God has been wonderful. I think whatever is built on a solid foundation cannot be pulled down”.
According to a member from Otunria Church in Andoni, Bro. Jacob Celestine, “This ministry was founded to save souls and to bring more souls to God’s Kingdom. It is not of this world, but God’s project and so it will remain relevant”.
Elder Roseline Ojire of Eagle Cement, Rumuolumeni branch said, “The vision will be carried on and no generation will by-pass it, because Christ sent it”.
A youth from Alakahia branch, Bro. Vincent Chris stated, “This ministry is tremendously impacting on the youths. It leads youths to Christ and makes them to be what God wants them to be”.
On what Greater Evangelism World Crusade stands for, Elder Allen Orie of Club Road branch, Bundu Zone, in Port Harcourt, has this to say: “Evangelising the world to reach the unreached; reducing the population of hell and increasing that of heaven; and also fulfilling the original mandate from God”.
Regarding the state of the Ministry today and tomorrow, Minister in-charge of Hospital and Prison visitations, Pastor Alabo Paul-Worika said, “we thank and appreciate God for the progress made and the present position of the ministry. I see the ministry tomorrow growing stronger and more vibrant than it is now, because its spirit today indicates a brighter future”.
Rev (Dr) Femi Martins (from Lagos) observed that, “The Lord that established the vision will not abandon it. That Lord will provide the required direction, but no one should remove the ancient landmarks”.
Highlights of the programme include singing of the ministry’s and national anthems, landmark testimonies, and cutting of the anniversary cake.
The mother of the Ministry, Pastor (Mrs) Euphemia Porbeni, who participated in the cutting of the Anniversary cake, appeared satisfied with the progress of the ministry.
Alabo Tonye Graham Douglas, Rev. (Dr) Femi Martins, Rector of Port Harcourt Polytechnic, Dr Sam Kalagbor, Dr (Mrs) D. Ibama and Prof. (Mrs) Charity Okujagu were among the dignitaries that graced the celebrations.