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Inside Bishop Isaac Idahosa’s N2.5 billion Illumination Assembly Church

Bishop Isaac Idahosa’s
Illumination Assembly

Illumination Assembly

General Overseer of God First Ministry, popularly known as Illumination Assembly, Bishop Isaac Idahosa is arguably one of the classy and wealthy clergy in Nigeria.

The handsome bishop whose ministry is tagged Celebrity Church, parades a N2.5 billion ministry.

His N1.5 billion 10,000-seater auditorium along Addo-Langbasa Road, Ajah, Lagos, is ready.

The new auditorium would serve as his new headquarters when commissioned this year.  A close source to the bishop informed ENCOMIUM Weekly that he splashed over N1 billion on the project.  The reason is that the acres of land he acquired were reclaimed at Ajah, Lagos.

We learnt he also acquired another multi million naira property around Ajah too recently.  Insiders alleged that he invested heavily on property and ICT.

That explains the N100 million auditorium he reportedly erected at Surulere axis in Lagos.  He also commissioned a multi-million naira auditorium at Okota, Lagos.  This also serves as one of his branches.  Amongst his multi-million naira properties, the branch at Minna, Niger State is acclaimed the biggest.  It is an ultra-modern edifice.  The reason is not unconnected with the fact that he started his ministry from there.

The soft-spoken clergy also invested in health centres.  The health centres are directly under the supervision of the church. He has the main health centre at Ajah near the ministry’s headquarters.

In fact, Bishop Idahosa is widely known as Pastor of Celebrities.  A lot of Nollywood stars grace his ministry and he holds special services for them.

The reason is that he is also an entertainment loving bishop with three hit gospel albums and the popular one is Don’t Give Up.  These albums have net several millions for him due to his widespread influence.

...with wife, Christie Idahosa

…with wife, Christie Idahosa

He lives well and loves the good things.  He lives in one of the most expensive estates in Ajah.  He rides a Lincoln Navigator, Range Rover and has five SUV automobiles.

However, his rise to success is quite remarkable as he started his ministry with 50 kobo. In his interview with ENCOMIUM Weekly in 2012, he narrated his humble beginning.

“I gave my life to Jesus Christ in 1979 and in 1985, I went to the bible college called Soul Clear Bible College.  I read Mechanical Engineering but after my graduation, I lost my peace because that’s not my destiny.  The Lord ministered to me about pioneering a work for Him. At that point, I went into fasting and prayer to get more directive from God. I started my ministry called God First Ministry at Minna, Niger State. I had no money and the only money on me was 50 kobo. I remember approaching one of our family friends, Idowu Maya and he offered me his boy’s quarters to begin my ministry. I was there with my guitar every day until I started attracting neighbours and students in that area.  After a while, the boy’s quarters could no longer accommodate us.  At that point, I told Maya that I was going to rent a two-bedroom apartment. He thought I had enough money to pay for the accommodation, not knowing that I had nothing on me.  Eventually, we found one and I was to pay N6,000 but I had only 50 kobo on me. On my way, I saw an abandoned building with an inscription on the wall, God’s own house. I narrated my ordeal to the Maya family and they laughed at me.  While I was trying to contact the owner of the property, I discovered it was owned by one Barrister Shadare, who died mysteriously in connection with a case he handled in court.  He ran mad and died thereafter. I learnt that the next person that occupied that house also died in same manner.  Thus, when I indicated my interest in moving into the apartment, the people were full of apprehension.  I was directed to see the then former Chief Justice of Niger state who was in charge of the property. I met him and he obliged me to move into the building free of charge.  Thus, I moved in in 1989.”

Today, the ministry has blossomed into a mega church. In September 2012, international gospel star, Ron Kennelly was among the special guests invited for the 23rd anniversary of Bishop Idahosa’s Illumination Assembly Church in Minna, Niger State.

His honorarium per annum from most of his engagements, home and abroad, is close to N50 million.  As a celebrity pastor, he nets an estimated N500 million per annum as tithes and offering.

Bishop Isaac Idahosa is from Edo State. He was born into the family of six children and he is the third.  He is married to Christie Idahosa.  The marriage clocked 26 on Sunday, April 28, 2014. The union is blessed with two children, Christabell and Osagie.

-FEMI OYEWALE

 

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