Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
October 1, 1964

Progress In Nigeria

George Pennock

God continues to bless the efforts put forth in both the Western and Mid-West Regions of Nigeria. Five churches have been established so far in 1964 — Warn, Koko, Oke Ado in Madan, Owo and a church that meets five miles from Benin just off the Asaba Road. The name of this village escapes me at the moment.


Brother Vincent Oritsejolone moved from Sapele to Warri, and finding no church of the Lord in that place he set about to establish one. The church had existed in Warri a few years ago; and they could even boast of a man working among them who was at least practically supported by the brethren in the U.S.A. Late in 1962, brethren Aude McKee and Paul Earnhart went to Warri to preach in the streets and to strengthen and edify the brethren. To their suprise and chagrin, they discovered that the preacher had disappeared and the church scattered. For more than a year, no church met in Warri. Then brother Oritsejolone moved there, and without any outside help, he has thus far managed to convert six men. They meet regularly in his room. This figure was correct back in April, but more may now be meeting with Brother Oritsejolone. At this time, it was my privilege to spend one Lord's day morning with these brethren. Warri, in the Mid-West Region, is located in the Niger delta, south of Benin City and Sapele.

The church in Koko began in much the same fashion as the church in Warri. Brother Cosmos Akpan moved from Sapele to Koko because of his w o r k. Though there was no church meeting in that place, he found several Ibos and Efiks working in Koko, who were also members of the Lord's body, and they began meeting regularly. Brother Akpan is himself an Efik, but unlike himself, these brethren had come from the Eastern Region to Koko. Brother Akpan's job is very time consuming and demanding He feels that this fact is hurting the growth of the work in Koko. He has never made any appeal for financial support; but he has appealed both to the brethren in Sapele and to us here in Ibadan, to "support his efforts" by coming and preaching publicly when possible. Koko is only a short distance downstream from Sapele, but is more than thirty miles of bad road, for there is no road going directly from Sapele to Koko, and one must go ten miles back toward Benin City and then approach Koko by a most indirect route. Brother Ekanem (the preacher in Sapele) rides his bicycle regularly to the three rubber camps on the north side of the Sapele river (churches meet in all three rubber camps), but to ride to Koko and back on a bicycle is another matter. Once brother Earnhart is settled in Sapele, he undoubtedly will be able to provide some of the assistance that the Koko brethren have been requesting. It was the writer's privilege to preach in Koko back in April. The crowd was large and interest good.

Five Miles From Benin

This church also began early in 1964, mainly as a result of the efforts of brother Solomon Etuk who labors at Benin City. Like Koko and Warri, this church is small, but a beginning has been made and by the grace of God it will grow. Some of the Benin brethren take turns cycling the five miles, and in so doing provide these brethren with regular assistance. In April, brother Earnhart and I visited this village twice. One afternoon, brother Eamhart spoke to the brethren, while the writer preached on the street. On another occasion, brother Etuk did the public preaching.

Oke Ado

Oke Ado is an area in the city of Ibadan. During the last week in January, thirteen people who lived in this area were baptized. The church met for the first time on February 2. More than sixty were present at the first service. Many however, were merely curious, and not all were sympathetic toward truth. During the first week in February, some of their former denominational brethren engaged in an active campaign to discourage and turn people from the truth. Yet on February 9, fifty-two were present at the morning service, and thirty in the evening. These figures were just about average for the first six months. These brethren are doing well, and it is a great thrill to watch them grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.


The Owo church is the youngest of all the churches in western Nigeria and an account of its beginning appeared in the Gospel Guardian not long ago. Of the churches born in 1964, three numbered among their original members at least one man who was not a babe in Christ. This was a distinct advantage. Two did not. Oke Ado had no such member, but situated as they were in Ibadan, they received much assistance from members of the other Ibadan churches. The Owo situation is unique. ALL of the members are babes in Christ; and they are not situated in such a favorable position geographically like Oke Ado. Owo is one hundred-fifty miles of bad road from Ibadan. The path ahead of them is a long difficult one, but by the grace of God, a crown of life awaits for those who endure unto the end.

— P. O. Box 4064, U.C.I. Ibadan, Nigeria