Months and weeks of waiting have finally come down to a few hours, to coin a Latin phrase; time does indeed pass quickly. All around several Christ Embassy churches, announcements, publicity campaigns had inundated members on the upcoming event-Pastor Chris Online, weeks ahead of D-day.
However different from previous campaigns, there were neither large brightly lit banners nor posters for invited guests; everyone attending this landmark program will be attending electronically- an online guest. This revolutionary event intends to break the barriers of time, space and culture. In two hours, the President of Believers LoveWorld Inc. Pastor Chris Oyakhilome is expected to attend to the needs of an online audience that he’d not be seeing; it will be his first. He’d teach, preach, take questions and pray for the sick. He’d also most likely pray for the unconverted. Perhaps it wouldn’t be improbable if you concluded this to be the next phase of the charismatic movement – an internet evangelistic outreach.
The man at the center of this all isn’t new to ground breaking: in the 90’s his teaching and healing programs broadcast in his home country Nigeria attracted millions of viewers. Praying for the sick reading testimonies of the sick soon turned to be a prime time event on several local TV stations. Another first was the launch of the first Satellite TV Network to broadcast from Africa to the rest of the world; LoveWorld Christian NetWork [LCN] continues to record million of viewers worldwide. What about the use of chairs in outdoor crusades that over the years have had thousands and more recently millions in attendance?
Pastor Chris Oyakhilome has never hidden his desire to capture an ever burgeoning internet audience. ‘The internet is the future of world evangelism’ he had pronounced years ago. Today Christ Embassy is deeply rooted and spinning its influence in the World Wide Web. Its website is hugely resourceful – Internet paraphernalia; DVD’s, newsletters, podcasts, e-books, etc inundates its site and ensures that first time visitors are hooked and can’t wait for a second look-in.
There is huge expectation and excitement amongst members who are unanimous that the online event will mirror the ministry’s previous successes. Social networking sites are already being bombarded with notices, invites, ads; groups and blogs are being formed, all for this historic event. Suddenly with millions of eyes on desktops, laptops and palmtops visual display screens and eager fingers caressing mouses and touchpads, a click away could guarantee a change of destiny for millions of lives.