by Obinna Akukwe
The city of Enugu was agog on Sunday 24th November 2013 while celebrating the Catholic Church feast of Corpus Christi-Christ the King. Catholic faithful left their different parishes on procession to Holy Ghost Cathedral, chanting, singing and proclaiming the Kingship of Jesus Christ. The Catholic adherents left their parishes including St Mary’s Catholic Church, Trans Ekulu, Christ the King Parish, GRA, Sacred Heart Parish, Uwani, St Paul’s Parish, Awkunanaw, St Bridget Abakpa, St Mary’s Uwani and St Theresa Ugbo Odogwu among hundreds of parishes and trekked towards Holy Ghost Cathedral in unprecedented jubilant mood and occasionally the Blessed Sacrament was showered with flowers and incensed while the faithful kneel in adoration.
Enugu simply came to a halt. It was Corpus Christi like never before. Over two hundred thousand persons converged at Holy Ghost Cathedral to terminate the procession and the moment was ecstatic for the participants. Prayers was said at the Cathedral and Diocesan Bishop , Callistus Onaga dismissed the jubilant congregants who proceeded back to their various bases mostly on foot while thanking God for this year’s unusual Corpus Christi.
The city of Enugu had in recent times been experiencing strange spiritual visitations which suggest that something new is about to happen to the Igbos of South East Nigeria. From September 12th -14th there was a three day crusade titled ‘Enugu Restoration Crusade’ organized by Christ Living spring Apostolic Ministry (CLAM) , a Lagos based church in conjunction with Christian Association of Nigeria(CAN),Enugu State Chapter . CLAM is known for hosting city wide crusades in places directed by God and the three evening crusade was held at Okpara Square Enugu. It featured prophetic prayers for the restoration of the spiritual and economic fortunes of the city.
The preacher, Pastor Wole Oladiyun prophesied that God had restored the coal industry in Enugu and that in a few years time many industries would spring up in the city as a result of economic revival. He also explained that revival is coming to the city and that God will raise a gospel minister from Enugu that will galvanize the people for a new move of God. The three day crusade was attended by leaders from various denominations including Archbishop A A Nwodika, Bishop Obi Onubogu, Ven Ejemba, Venerable O C Obi Okoye, Apostle Uzodike, Rev Obinna Akukwe, and Pastor Tony Ochu among others.
In October 2013 from the 27th -29th, Igbo ministers who spearheaded the fabled Pentecostal revival of the early 70’s converged at Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium for three days under the aegis of Igbo Restoration Assembly (IRA) to pray for the spiritual revival of Igbo nation and the restoration of its lost glory in Nigeria. The gathering of prophets told the congregation that the next phase of the expected worldwide end time revival that will herald the second coming of Jesus Christ will come from the South East. They referred to prophecies which emanated towards the end of famous Azusa Street Pentecostal Revival of Los Angeles, California, United States of 1913 explaining that after 100 years another revival that will signal the coming of Christ will come. The Azusa street revival is the origin of the Pentecostal movement and the return of speaking in tongues back to the church after it was lost for over 1500 years. The gathering identified 2013 as that 100th year after the Azusa revival and urged Igbos to prepare to lead in the coming revival that will turn people back to God.
Some participants and preachers at the occasion include Anglican Bishop of Enugu, Emmanuel Chukwuma; Methodist Primate Archbishop88, former National President of Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria(PFN) , Bishop Mike Okonkwo; former Chaplain of Aso Villa Chapel, Rev Williams Okoye; President of PFN Anambra State Chapter, Bishop David Eberechukwu; President of PFN Enugu Bishop Obi Onubogu ;Archbishop A A Nwodika, Bishop Edward Ezenwafor, Apostle Austin Ukachi, Rev Obinna Akukwe, Bishop Paul Nwachukwu, Apostle Olughu Orji, Professor Uzodimma Nwala among others.
Two weeks later, clerics in the city hosted Rev Rosy Madugba and Prophetess Sabina Akachukwu who introduced the Prophetic-Apostolic mandate on the 14th of October with a revival night vigil which drew clerics from different denominations at Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium and also with church leaders’ special session on the 15th at Oakland Hotels. The participants were also told that some renowned expatriate prophets around the world have prophesied that the next worldwide revival will start from Nigeria while some others narrowed it specifically to the South East Nigeria. The clerics were told to prepare themselves and sensitize the people to follow in the end time revival. Archbishops Nwodika, Bishop Obi Onubogu, Apostle Uzodike, Rev Obinna Akukwe, Rev Celestine obi among numerous others received the Apostolic counsel from the Port Harcourt based missionary evangelist, Rev Rosy Madugba and the prayer sessions during the two days were like no other.
Though Corpus Christi is an annual event, the 2013 edition was celebrated with much pomp as though the King is just about to appear, in a manner never witnessed since the inception of the diocese. Some attributed it to the fact that it coincided with the church synod which ended the day before while others suspected unusual spiritual presence. Many participants including some priests and sisters actually wondered aloud at the level of excitement following this year’s edition and concluded that something unusual is happening while many pondered the meaning.
The answer is that God is preparing the Igbos of the South East to spearhead the spiritual revival that will transform the world and this impending revival will broke no denominational barriers.