Lagos Central Baptist Conference

Our History

The historical development of Lagos East Baptist Conference recognises the selfless efforts of the founding fathers, especially those who formed the Lagos State Baptist Conference on August 11, 1973 at First Baptist Church, 24, Broad Street, Lagos Island. The efforts of church planters who grew the number of churches from 28 to over 800 are highly recognised and appreciated. The efforts of Rev Isaiah Oluwafemi Bamimodu, the pioneer Conference Secretary and those of Rev Dr Sunday Oduayo Oke, who took over from him, are noteworthy. This book looks into the conception, birth, corporate direction, officers, ministerial endeavours and capacity building of Lagos East Baptist Conference

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you: before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations” (Jeremiah 1:5, NKJV).

It is a common saying that there is “no history without events”. It is also believed that “there can’t be an effect without a cause”. God is active in the events of universe, especially the one that led to the formation of Baptist churches in Lagos State. God, as all-knowing, was at the centre of everything, even before conception, to the formative stage. God called on believers in Lagos State to evangelise in the communities. The founding fathers based their actions on His special purpose for the redemption of people of different races.

Thomas Jefferson Bowen brought the gospel light to Nigeria in 1850. The gospel light carries a divine aura that illuminates every nook and cranny of Lagos State and part of Ogun State. The First Baptist Church, Lagos was the first congregation to be founded by the American missionary. Rev Joseph M. Harden, an African American and a business agent of the American Baptist Mission, was an instrument who facilitated the sending of missionaries to the hinterland. The seed sown had produced over 800 churches and the name of the Lord is praised for this gospel landmark.

The Lord blessed the efforts of the missionaries and indigenous ministers. More churches were planted. At the beginning, the churches in Lagos State cooperated with other Baptist churches in the defunct Western Region to form an association called the Lagos Baptist District Association, in 1938. In 1972, the name of the association was changed to Lagos Baptist Association.

The association, at her second quarterly meeting held at First Baptist Church, Orile Agege, on  July 10, 1972 resolved to form Lagos Baptist Conference. This resolution led to the regrouping of the association on August 14, 1972 into three. The Nigerian Baptist Convention, on August 11, 1973, formally recognised the Lagos State Baptist Conference, with 24 churches.

Rev. S. O. Daramola was the Conference Chairman, while Rev Isaiah Olufemi Bamimodu became the part-time Conference Secretary in 1979 and full-time in 1986. He served as part-time Conference Secretary for six years and full-time from January 1986 till he retired in December 2000. The conference developed more during his tenure. Baptist Model High School, Ijegun and Baptist College of Theology, formely at Isolo, but now at Agbowa Ikosi, were established during his tenure. Churches increased from 25 to 234 and from three associations to 14. There is need to appreciate conference chairmen who served with him for their selfless services: Rev. Emmanuel O. Okewole (1988-1994) and Rev Dr. Michael A. Ekiran (1994-2000). Rev. Ebenezer Gbemi Otolorin couldn’t work with Rev. Bamimodu for a long time since he retired in December 2000.

Rev Dr. Sunday Odunayo Oke took over the mantle of leadership as Conference Secretary in 2001. He grew the churches from 234 to 463 and associations from 14 to 27. He strengthened education by establishing Baptist Model High School, Isolo and received Baptist Model High School, Agbowa from the Nigerian Baptist Convention in 2006. He moved the Conference Secretariat from Isolo to Baptist Academy Compound at Obanikoro, Lagos. Towards the end of his tenure, he multiplied the Lagos State Baptist Conference into three: Lagos Central, East and West Baptist Conferences. Rev. Ebenezer Gbemi Otolorin, who rotated out as Conference Chairman in 2006 and Rev. Emmanuel Adebayo Awotunde, who took over from him, as well as Rev. Sunday Egbinola Abraham, who was the Chairman as a result of Rev. Awotunde, who stepped down, were appreciated for their contributions. 

God did not only grow the work beyond the shores of Lagos State, he also led the leadership of the conference to multiply the conference into three. The late Rev. Emmanuel A. O. Oguntokun first mooted the idea to multiply the Lagos Baptist Conference during the Pastors’ Fellowship meeting at New Revelation Baptist Church, Ikeja and based on the discussion of the pastors, Rev. Ademola Adeyi, the then Pastor of Baptist Church, Onitiri moved a motion at the next Conference Executive Committee meeting for multiplication. The Executive Committee of the Conference inaugurated a committee to study the idea.

The Study Committee, having collated opinion responses on the multiplication, recommended that the Conference be multiplied into three: Lagos Central, East and West Baptist Conferences. The Conference-in-Session at Baptist Model High School, Ijegun approved the recommendation in 2009.  Technical and Implementation committees were put in place for the execution of the Conference decision and on Thursday, September 30,

2010, the former General Secretary of the Convention, Rev. Dr. Solomon Ademola Ishola, inaugurated the three conferences of which Lagos East is one.

To God be the glory for the conception and for empowering each of the conferences to preach the gospel.