Some 30 years after an idea for a prayer mountain was birthed to the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye and his wife, Pastor (Mrs) Foluke Adeboye, in faraway South Korea, a magnificent prayer mountain has been unveiled in Ifewara, Osun State.
Ifewara, some 10 minutes off Ile-Ife, is the hometown of Pastor Adeboye. Named Mount Carmel Prayer Mountain, the facility was opened recently at a relatively quiet ceremony that drew RCCG elders and pastors as well as digni-taries from Ifewara, in addition to workers and volunteers.
Specifically built and fully equipped for its purpose as a prayer village; Mount Carmel is a modern facility of a magnificent mix of sanctuaries, dormitories, chalets and numerous prayer huts flowing down the slope of a hill, sandwitched between bigger residential blocks.
There are halls of various sizes and to avoid distractions of going out in search of daily needs there is a restaurant, bookshop, a super-market, etc. Of course there is reliable electricity there.
Welcoming guests to the opening ceremony, Pastor (Mrs.) Adeboye, who supervised the project, re-vealed that although the plot of land had been acquired by them years ago for a prayer mountain, the land had been lying fallow until about seven years ago when her husband moved for its dev-elopment.
According to her, she asked Daddy G.O.: “Who is going to help you build it?” And Pastor Adeboye answered: “God, but you will be following His leading to do it.”
As she wondered how she would start, an architect volunteered to design the facility, and with the support of engineers, and other workers the forested hill slope turned years later into a beauty to behold.
Tracing the origin of the project, she said: “We had been inspired to build a prayer mountain by what we saw in South Korea in 1985. We went for David Yonggi Cho’s prayer conference and one afternoon, he took delegates to their prayer mountain, which we admired so much.
“But then, we said, ‘God, this is South Korea. We travelled almost a whole day to get here. How can we have something like this in Nigeria?’ And since 1985, we had it in our minds that one day, there would be a prayer mountain of a similar status in Nigeria,” she said.
Explaining the rationale behind the name, she said: “We named this Mount Carmel after the Mount Carmel where Prophet Elijah defeated the work of the devil. We also remembered the Mount of Transfiguration.”
Corroborating his wife’s account, Pastor Adeboye said: “When we returned from South Korea in 1985, we decided, by the grace of God, that there would be a prayer mountain in Nigeria that people from all over the world would come to pray.”
They consulted and later bought the land but “the challenges were much. But what I had discussed with God about the prayer mountain remained burning in my heart. The way I had planned it, the place should have been built many years ago, but in the face of the enormous challenges, we resorted to building a place called “Halleluyah House” at the Redemption Camp.
“Yet the passion for the prayer mountain was still burning in my heart. I believed that by the time I was 60 years old, we would have built it, but it was not possible. When I was getting to 70 years old, I remembered that every year after 70 years of a man on earth is extra time,” he continued.
“To ensure that the dream would not die, and efforts that had been made would not be fruitless, I called my wife and gave her the responsibility to build this prayer mountain,” Daddy G.O. said.
Among those present at the event were some elders of Ifewara, Professor Fola Aboaba, Elder Moronfolu Olusola Olakunrin (SAN), Elder Felix Ohiwerei, Bishop Wale Oke and his wife.