The oldest church in western Nigeria, Ibadan Oldest Church, The Cathedral Church of St. David, Kudeti, is set to mark its 170th Founder’s Day anniversary with a week-long series of activities slated for September 18 and 24.
The Mogaji of Aboderin compound in Ibadanland and Chairman of the 170th anniversary committee, Chief Olutunde Aboderin, who made this announcement on Monday, said the event presents an opportunity for families, friends, associates, and all lovers of goodwill to identify with the enduring history and legacy of faith, nurtured by perseverance, that the church has come to represent.
He said the Ibadan Oldest Church’s contributions to education and spiritual life cannot be overemphasized, which has led to the establishment of schools and churches in Ibadan and its environs.
Chief Bayonle Adewale said the activities of the week-long event include revival, society days, medical outreach, youth variety day, a love feast, and the unveiling of the Baobab tree.
“Others are: planting of new trees and book launch, Thanksgiving Service, Dedication of Chapter House and Reopening of David and Anna Hinderer House,” he added.
According to him, “This anniversary is to package history for posterity. If we don’t do this, we will have thrown away a great legacy that we should give to future generations. By the special grace of God, the church of God will continue to match on
“We are here to showcase that Christianity started in Ibadan, from this place. It is a pride of the entire Ibadanland and a pride of the Yoruba race. We were told that it was under that tree that the first gospel was preached on April 27, 1853.
“I have been to so many parts of the world, and I want to say this, in Hong Kong, you have trees on the road and when they were planted you dare not take a leaf from them without being arrested.
“There is a storey building here in Ibadanland which was built in 1853—the first-story building in the entire Ibadanland. Not many people know that.
“Actually, this building should rank with the ones in Badagry and Abeokuta and should be a place that the state and Federal Government should take over and maintain as they do in other parts of the world,” he said.
The Ibadan Oldest Church was founded by the late German missionary and evangelist, David Hiderer, on April 27, 1853, assisted by his interpreter, the late Reverend Daniel Olubi, who was the first indigenous vicar of the church.