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Sunday, October 21, 2012

Bishop David Oyedepo accused of exploiting British worshippers over £16m

This is a story published by UK Daily Mail this morning accusing Bishop Oyedepo's Winners Chapel of exploiting their worshipers and receiving over £16m in donations from them.

Read it below...

A church run by a controversial multi-millionaire African preacher has been accused of ‘cynical exploitation’ after its British branch received £16.7 million in donations from followers who were told that God would give them riches in return.
Followers are ferried in double-decker shuttle buses to the church, handed slips inviting them to make debit card payments, and are even told obeying the ministry’s teachings will make them immune from illness.
Today’s Mail on Sunday revelations about the Winners’ Chapel movement have prompted the Charity Commission to review the charitable status  of the church – one of the fastest-growing in the UK.
Winners’ Chapel is part of a worldwide empire of evangelical ministries run by Nigeria’s wealthiest preacher David Oyedepo, who has an estimated £93 million fortune, a fleet of private jets and a Rolls-Royce Phantom.


Dubbed ‘The Pastorpreneur’, he was accused earlier this year of slapping the face of a young woman he said was a witch. The assault case was struck out but is being appealed.

Branches of the church have sprung up in major UK cities in a huge recruitment drive centred on Mr Oyedepo’s ‘prosperity gospel’. This claims that congregants who make regular donations and pay tithes – a ten per cent levy on their income – will be rewarded financially by God.

Followers are urged to target vulnerable people such as the lonely, the sick, the homeless and the suicidal as potential candidates for conversion.

Last night, Labour MP Paul Flynn said Winners’ Chapel was cynically exploiting supporters. ‘They [Winners’ Chapel] are making clearly spurious claims and it seems to be a cynical exploitation of the gullible,’ he said.

Referring to the slapping incident, Mr Flynn added: ‘What is also alarming is the reported violence and the lack of respect for the status of women. It’s taking us back to a previous age of ignorance and prejudice that we all thought the church had escaped.’

Congregants are handed a payment slip requesting payments using cheque, cash or debit card when they enter London’s Winners’ Chapel.
Donations to the ministry in England almost doubled from £2.21 million to £4.37 million between 2006 and 2010.
Mr Oyedepo’s superchurch in Nigeria received £794,000 or 73 per cent of the charitable donations paid out by the British Winners’ Chapel between 2007 and 2010. This was despite claims in Africa that he is enriching himself at the expense of his devotees.
The registered charity has spent £6.81 million on evangelism and ‘praise, worship and fellowship’.
The church’s ‘Joseph Squad’ preaches in British prisons and has a weekly broadcast named ‘Liberation Hour’ on satellite and cable TV here.
In the past three years, Winners’ Chapel churches have been established in Liverpool, Birmingham, Leeds and Bradford, adding to those in London, Manchester, Dublin and Glasgow.

An undercover Mail on Sunday reporter attended Sunday services  at Winners’ Chapel’s ‘London HQ’  in Dartford, Kent, which attracts 1,000 congregants – chiefly African and Caribbean immigrants. It is run like ‘a business conference’ by Mr Oyedepo’s son, David Oyedepo Jnr. Packed buses deliver singing worshippers from South-East London, Essex and Kent to the huge auditorium.

The reporter saw a payment slip being given to every person entering the church encouraging them to donate money by cheque or cash or to fill in a form with their debit card details. The slip said tithes should be paid separately using a ‘Kingdom Investment Booklet’ and the reporter was informed that payments could also be made by phone. A pastor told the worshippers: ‘You shall be financially promoted after this service in Jesus’s name if you are ready to honour the Lord therefore with all your givings, your tithes, your offerings, your Kingdom investment, your sacrifices.’

Congregants were told to fill in their slips and hold them above their heads while the donations were blessed
A jet belong to Bishop Oyedepo
The service was interspersed with testimonies. ‘I received a bill from  the bank that I didn’t understand, so I prayed,’ said one congregant. ‘A few days later, the bank wrote to apologise for their mistake – Hallelujah!’ ‘Hallelujah,’ the audience shouted back.
Congregants were told they could gain favour by persuading others to follow Mr Oyedepo’s teachings. His son said: ‘Look around you. Someone is sick and already wishing he or she were dead, that is a fruit ripe to harvest. Someone is confounded and considering suicide as an option, that is another fruit that is ripe to harvest.
‘Someone else is lonely and wondering if there is any future for him, that is another fruit ripe to harvest.

‘Also there are many men and women, young and old that are homeless, these are fruits ripe to harvest.’

The reporter was taken, with 20 other new recruits, to a room where preachers gave sermons claiming acceptance of the Lord would prevent them ever being ill or suffering misfortune.

The Mail on Sunday has seen video footage of Mr Oyedepo striking a woman across the face and condemning her to hell after she said she was a ‘witch for Jesus’. He attacked her in a Winners’ Chapel superchurch, believed to be in Nigeria, in front of worshippers. A separate video shows him saying: ‘I slapped a witch here last year!’
In May, he was sued for £800,000 over the alleged assault. The case was struck out – a decision which is now reported to have been appealed.

The Winners’ Chapel movement, also known as the Living Faith Church, has hundreds of churches in Nigeria and across Africa, the Middle East, the UK and the US.
Mr Oyedepo has received fierce criticism in Africa. One Nigerian journalist accused him of ‘leading a growing list of pastorpreneurs – church founders exploiting the passion and emotion that Christianity commands to feather their nests’.


Catholic Cardinal Anthony Okogie criticised such preachers for placing materialism above Jesus’s message. He reportedly said: ‘They have been skinning the flock, taking out of the milk of the flock.’

Among Mr Oyedepo’s fleet of aircraft are said to be a Gulfstream 1 and Gulfstream 4 private jets. It is also claimed he and his wife, Faith, travel in expensive Jeeps flanked by convoys of siren-blaring vehicles. He is the senior pastor of Faith Tabernacle, a 50,000-seat auditorium in Lagos reputed to be the largest church in the world, and runs a publishing company that distributes books carrying his message across the world.
His other business interests span manufacturing, petrol stations,  bakeries, water purification factories, recruitment, a university, restaurants, supermarkets and real estate. The latest addition is a commercial airline named Dominion Airlines.

A Charity Commission spokesman said: ‘The Charity Commission is  currently assessing what, if any,  regulatory role there is to play with regard to the complaints made against the World Mission Agency. It is important to clarify that this does not constitute an investigation at this stage.’

Winners’ Chapel administrator Tunde Disu declined to comment.
-UK Daily Mail

Praise da Lord Somebody!!!!


17 comments:

  1. My problem with dis Pastor is dat slap he gave dat lil girl! And no one did anything! Well him don enter Britico wahala..Goodluck 2him!

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  2. I don't wana judge him,so dat i will not be judged. I don't wana condemn,so dat it will nt come back against me.Judgment is For God. *smiles*

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  3. Men of God, all na Bizz. But like kemsugar said, make I no judge b4 thunder go strike me. LoL.

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  4. Pastor wey jet pass president no be thief

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  5. DaDdy thief! Jesus was no business man

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  6. That's my blessed papa.. Journey is 4 God, Givers never lack.. On the other hand, we were meant 2 understand by Karlmarx that Religion is d opium of d masses, it exploits, suppresses followers conciousness and rational thinking. Big kudos to Tess ume 4 being an umbiased umpire buh succintly I concure to Kemsugar's perception, so let's leave spiritual matters and Judgement 4 God.. God bless Winners family. IGBOKWE BOBTTY #proudly winners#

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    1. Glory! *shines teeth*

      #Queen

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  7. What is my Pastor doing on this blog?????....hian!!!

    #Queen

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  8. The bible recorded dat Jacob was so rich that the leaders of the country asked him to move.
    If Oyedepo is very fruitful y r they attacking him? Does it mean God isn't big enough to make him fruitful? Thank God they didn't say he forced anyone to bring their DONATIONS...every church hands out envelopes for offering and usually asks for freewill donantions....it is left for you to believe and do what you want......as for slapping the girl, well, I dunno wat to say about that.
    I just think this is of no use...the man is rich but is he the richest pastor? Have they probed white pastors?
    Well, like Kemi said, I don't like to discuss Men of God,whether they claim to be men of God or they are real men of God, I leave God to judge them...

    -Miss D

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    1. Exactly my thot Miss D....u made a whole lotta sense

      #Queen

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  9. Pastor of life! Wht do u xpect frm som1 dat has a private jet? Na dis kind tin go make God wan change him mind 4 dis generation. If dem hear rapture nw dem go dey send bc up n down. He shuld enjoy n save enuf incase tho cos in revelations, only those dats got mark of d beast will buy n sell so mayb d private jet n moni go useful by den! Evrybody wan build church smh!

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  10. Hmmmmm only God will juge. Lord hv mercy

    beebee

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  11. This Preachings of prosperity n forgetting righteousness which is d sermon of christ is d beginning of d problem we r facing in our society 2day.pastors parading too much wealth without conscience. They leave their members wanting to be like them at all cost.and also causing unnecessary competition directly or indirectly. This has made crime increase in our time. What's all dis madness over prosperity? Have we forgotten about laying up tresures in heaven? Well, I believe these group of preachers ave their heaven here on eart cos obviously, I doubt if they wil make it. Stealing in d name of christ. Let ur wil be done Lord. Have mercy.

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  12. If this blogger knows so much about christainity then he/she should also knw that it isn't in anyone's place to judge or condemn. Do not be deceived God is not mocked, be careful not to get carried away. As for givings in church read the book of malachi 3:10-12.

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  13. My mouth is sealed, its a no go area wer God's mata is.
    Next story pls!!!

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    ReplyDelete

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