Home News Odutola’s resignation throws up fresh challenge for RCCG…more foreign pastors may follow

Odutola’s resignation throws up fresh challenge for RCCG…more foreign pastors may follow

by Church Times


The resignation of Pastor Tola Odutola, one of the most prominent pastors of the Redeemed Christian Church of God in the United States has created a fresh challenge for the church.

Though he is not the first top pastor that would resign from the Church, his resignation seems to be one too many.

In 2013, Pastor Bayo Akijiyan an Architect resigned from the church alleging an unfair deal. He went ahead to set up his own ministry in Ipaja, Lagos. Pastor  Sola Fola-Alade also resigned from the RCCG Trinity House Church in the UK which he led for over 10 years to set up his own ministry called Liberty House a few years ago. Pastor Victor Wellington also pulled out in 2018.

Wellington was the National Coordinator of the RCCG in France with about 25 churches under him before he pulled out of the church early in the year 2018 citing systemic rot in the church. These are just recent cases of top pastors of the church that resigned.


Pastor Odutola and Kofo his wife

Before these recent resignations, there had been the case of Pastor Tunde Bakare, Pastor Tony Rapu and Pastor Itua Ighodalo and a host of other unknown names.

Sources close to Church Times told our correspondent that Odutola’s resignation may well be an open door for several other foreign pastors of the church to break away if the church fails to do the needful.

Odutola had made his resignation public in a viral video alleging that he did not gain anything from the church in his 30 years of service to the church.

With his resignation, the church where he pastors, Jesus House Baltimore in the US will no longer be answerable to the RCCG. Some other parishes that he helped to establish may follow in his steps if they so desire.

Members of the Jesus House were excited to hear him announce his resignation which had been tendered since April. But he was just making the announcement because the church was just gathering for the first time since the pandemic last Sunday.

In the US, churches are independent legal entities and are regarded as charities. Their books are open to government scrutiny annually.

In the viral video, Odutola said his church would now run independently.

Sources told our correspondent that Odutola who is an alumnus of Loyola College, Ibadan has been very useful in setting up parishes of the RCCG in the US. “He was very rich before he left Nigeria for the US. He spent his money for the church and perhaps nobody cared about how he fared. He may be reacting to a perceived nonchalant attitude from the church’s management” the source said.

Odutola had said in the video, “I served for 30 years without anything from the RCCG, but I know that God is the one who rewards.  I know there will be many people who are disappointed by my decision but I apologise. I know I will be demonized in the social media.

“In April of this year, I resigned. This is, in fact, our first Sunday under another organization.  I want you to know that my resignation is not a decision I take lightly. I served for 30 years that cannot be taken back. I want to focus on the job the Lord has given me. I have made up my mind I will not throw stones. We are going to move on with life. My destiny is not in anybody’s hands.”

A top member of the Church told our correspondent that the church needs some reorganization noting that if Jim Obaze’s of the then Financial Reporting Council has been allowed with his recommendation in the Nigerian Church some of these issues of pastors not being taken care of would have been addressed.

“What we have now is that the branches are feeding the centre. Many of the churches in the RCCG are weak. The way to go is for the Church to allow the parishes to be largely independent so they can take care of their basic needs instead of being perpetually tied to the headquarters.” The source said.

Odutola comes from the famous Odutola family in Ijebu Ode. He has a story of a challenging growing up years but through hard work and God’s mercy he turned out to be successful. Now about 61, he is a Chartered Accountant. He worked at Peat Marwick, KPMG in Nigeria. He was also at DHL as Treasury Controller and Business Development Manager before being called into full-time ministry.

The website of the Jesus House informs that In addition to being the Senior Pastor at Jesus House Baltimore, he is the Regional Pastor of Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCGNA) North America Region 9. (NAR 9).

“He also was the founding chairman of the Redeemer’s Leadership Institute (RLI). RLI is the Leadership arm of the Redeemed Christian Church of God North America (RCCGNA) which provides continuous training for Religious Leaders worldwide. He is the Chairman of Alpha Leadership Conference (ALC), an organization charged with promoting and teaching leadership skills to all people of all nations.

“He consults, mentors and coaches Pastors, speaks regularly at Leadership Conferences, Churches, Corporations, Minister’s Conferences, Seminars and other Leadership Development Opportunities”.

Already on the Jesus House website, there is no emblem of the RCCG. The church is yet to make any official statement on the development.


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Samuel O. Laraiyetan July 15, 2020 - 9:21 am

One power God has given every individual is the power of choice. Nobody has a monopoly of God’s anointing. The most important thing is to make heaven at the end of our sojourn.

TeeHooJay July 16, 2020 - 3:52 am

Reading this piece and the sequel to it where Odutola gave some of the reasons that informed his “forced* resignation, what keeps ringing in my heart are these words: Franchise and Politicking – reaping and sowing.

Like in politics, this comes off as another case of “not being carried along” akin to what we hear from and read of some “disgruntled” politicians and party members who usually fall out with the party leadership and structures whilst accusing (s)elected public office holders and deriding appointed aofficials of the party of not depriving the other stakeholders at the grassroots and within the party hierarchy of neglect.

This news report also painted a scenario where RCCG brand has become a franchise that can be bought, sorry, leveraged to start branches abroad and/or anywhere and along/down the line, the franchisor comes forward to take by reap off the franchisee of the assets thereof but opting not to take the liabilities therefrom. One is yet to see where that is done even in the business world.

Lastly, one sees in this news report the barefaced and somewhat overbearing disposition of the headquarters on the parishes and the pastorate. The headquarters seem to be out to lord her greeds, sorry, needs over the branches. It is akin to the fleecing entitlement mental Africa parents and guardians often yet crassly exhibit when and in their dealings with their children and wards.

RCCG, leadership and the pastorate, the parishes and even the pews must realise that called and sent both the sower/labourer and the reaper/harvester to rejoice together. It is and cannot be a one-sided, heavily tilted, discriminatory and fleecing things. When and where the head(quarters) present itself as overlord both covertly or overtly, it will surreptitiously breding warlords such as we are now seeing and reading on the pages of newspapers and social media space.

and pastors not being taken care of would have been addressed whilst what now subsists is that the branches are feeding the centre.

Samuel Boss July 19, 2020 - 7:26 am

Let every church leaders be responsible for the well being of their pastor’s, ministers, workers and members.
In all they are selfish ang greedy.God will guide us all, pastor Odutola I pray for you God will be with you always His fear, wisdom and presence help you move forward and build men for kingdom purpose alone,self will not take over you and the ministry in Jesus mighty name remain blessed in His vineyard Love great EVANGELIST……

Esther July 26, 2020 - 2:04 pm

It so sad, in-fact sickening to behold the present state of the church today! In all of these, no one, not even pastor Odutola has said thus saith the Lord concerning the issue. God still speaks, oh how it is sweet to know the heart of Christ. My question is what did God say to pastor Odutola when he presented the case to Jesus the Supreme head of the church? He said he prayed. By experience, I remember being ridiculed and lied on by a sister in the church badly treated as a minister. I was so hurt and intended on being vindictive. One day a sister from the church called me knowing in that attitude, I would have ranted in rage. Suddenly, the Holy spirit instructed ”put the phone down”. Then, He said this, speaking the heart of the Lord Jesus to me concerning the matter, ”be careful what you do in your bid to vindicate yourself because what you do can either pull down or build my church.” These words shook me to the core of my being. I began weeping before the Lord in repentance. I learned by experience that when it comes to the things of the church, you should know the heart of God either by audible hearing or by the written word. Paul the Apostle throughout his ministry taught us how to serve well, Ephesians 6:7 ”Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people because you know that the Lord will reward each one for whatever good they do, whether they are slave or free.” What did God say? Leaders who do not have the ears and eyes of the Spirit will lead many to hell!! You might not listen to the social media comments and your children fight to defend the comments as you said. Truth is the church is not about pastor Odutola or pastor Adeboye, it is All about Jesus, the one who paid the price with his blood. One day every one will be forced to listen standing in the presence of the one with the eyes of fire, Revelation 19:12 ”His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself…”. With those eyes He will sit as judge over all! He is coming sooner than the world thinks. Hell is real!!!

Akinnawo olusesan Rapheal April 15, 2021 - 2:48 pm

Thanks so much for this.

Olu Oyewole November 30, 2021 - 2:14 am

This is summary is sufficient to reflect upon fir everyone. WHAT DID JESUS SAY?

Sunny August 2, 2020 - 8:43 am

I feel so sad and disappointed to read about Pastor Tola Odutola’s resignation from the RCCG. I believe it would be very wrong to jump to any conclusion solely on account of Pastor Odutola’s narrative of what he said prompted him to leave RCCG, without hearing from the parent church in Nigeria. May we not fall to the temptation of the devil.


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