Ask a Question

THE METHODISTS MISSION IN NIGERIA

By the end of this unit, you should be able to:
• identify the roles of the Methodist Mission in Nigeria
• discuss the methods used by the Methodist Missionaries 
to spread their faith in Nigeria
• list the mission stations that were opened by the Methodist 
Mission in Nigeria.

The Arrival of the Methodist Misionaries in Nigeria around 1840

 
The Yoruba settlers in Freetown, Sierra / Leone had appealed to 
the Queen of England to permit them established a Colony in 
Badagry. They also demanded that soldiers, traders and 
missionaries se sent to them at Badagry to help them wage war 
against slavery, especially the Ado people ,and to preach the 
Gospel of Christ. In 1841, these people wrote letters to 
missionaries who were stationed in Sierra-Leone to come and preach 
the gospel of Christ in Badagry. When their letters were read to 
the Christians in Sierra / Leone, some people liked the idea and 
appealed to missionaries to assist the Christians in Badagry. 
On 24 September, 1842, the Reverend Thomas Birch Freeman and 
William de Graft arrived at Badagry. Reverend Freeman preached 
the gospel to the people who lived in Badagry. He made many 
converts in the town. The Clergy built a mission house at Badagry. He 
organized prayer-meetings for the Christians. Freeman paid a visit to 
Abeokuta to open a mission station in Egbaland. When he got to 
Abeokuta, he met Henry Townsend an Anglican Catechist and 
two Egba freed slaves from Sierra-Leone spreading the gospel 
there. When he had returned from Abeokuta to Badagry, he left 
for his home country. Freeman left De Graft behind at Badagry 
to care for the adherents of the Methodist faith both in Badagry 
and Abeokuta respectively. However, he used to pay visits to De 
Graft once in a blue moon. The Methodist mission later 
transferred De Graft and posted Samuel Annear to replace him 
at Badagry. The mission station at Abeokuta was shut down due 
to the Dahome wars for a period by the Methodist Mission. 
However, when the war ended, a teacher was sent there to reopen 
the Mission Station at Abeokuta. The Methodist outreaches spread 
from Badagry to Lagos. In addition to the above named means used 
to spread Christianity in the Yoruba land, mention could be made 
of the freed slaves who went from Sierra-Leone to settle at 
Abeokuta after gaining their freedom from the Dahomean armies. 
In 1846, the Methodist and Anglican Missions were established in 
Lagos and Abeokuta. Besides, as soon as the Lagos slave market 
was shut down, the Methodist and Anglican Missionaries entered 
there and they established Mission Stations and Schools in both 
towns. African ministers were stationed in the two towns to spread 
Christianity [Geoffrey Parrinder, 1969]. In the Schools that were 
established by the Missionaries in Lagos and Abeokuta towns, 
instructions were largely oral since books were scarce. Prayers 
and Biblical texts were learnt through oral recitation. 
Christianity could not penetrate into the Northern parts of Nigeria in 
the early period, because the then Governor-General of Nigeria, 
Sir Lord Luggard ruled that Christianity could only be allowed 
to enter the Hausa land through the agreement of the ruling 
Chiefs who were the Custodians of Islam religion.
 

3.2 The Baptist Mision

 
In 1850, the American Baptist Missionary, Thomas .J.Bowen arrived 
Badagry.
He established a mission station there. He built a Mission Station at 
Ijaye. In the same year, he moved from there to Abeokuta. There he met 
the Wesleyan and the Church Missionary Society Missionaries. While 
Bowen was at the town, he studied Yoruba language in order to be able 
to communicate with the people without any interpreter. He later wrote 
Yoruba Grammar and Dictionary for the use of Yoruba people. Bowen 
proceeded from Abeokuta to Ibadan and Ogbomosho where he 
established Baptist Mission Stations in 1854. 
 
At Ogbomosho, converts saw themselves as superior people over the 
traditionalists. For this reason, the traditionalists developed hatred 
against Christians in the town. Besides, they abandon tradition of 
urying the dead in their family compounds. This act compounded 
their problems in the town. Christians then started burying their dead in 
the bush. This is because Christians considered burying of dead persons 
in the houses unhygienic.
 On the other hand, traditionalists viewed burying the dead in the bush 
as separation from their ancestors. In traditional beliefs, the moment a 
person is dead, he has become an ancestor, to be reverenced and 
worshipped. The traditionalists hated the Christians the more for not 
allowing the buried Christians to join their ancestors. The traditionalists 
also Kicked against the idea of the Christians burying the dead in the 
ush for only criminals were buried in the bush at Ogbomosho. In 1879, 
according to Ayandele, all Christians were expelled from Ogbomoso 
[Ayandele, 1979 p.14].
Bowen built a Mission station at Ijaye. In 1854, Harden also established 
a Mission Station in Lagos, Lagos State, Nigeria. From Lagos, the 
Baptist Mission also spread to Oyo, Shaki, Igboho, all in Oyo State,and 
Ilorin, in Kwara State, Nigeria.[E.O. Babalola , 1979.p.14] The spread 
of the Baptist Mission to the Northern parts of Nigeria was done by 
some Nigerians who were working in the Northern Nigeria. The 
Government posted them to the place after the Second World War. The
Yoruba government workers in the North were located mostly in Jos. 
There they worshiped as adherents of the Baptist faith. However, in 
1912, the Nigerian Baptist Convention was officially formed. It is now 
completely self-governing, self-propagating, and self supporting. In 
1920, a Minister of the faith paid a visit to them. There he officially 
established a Mission Station for the Baptist adherents. While he was 
returning from Jos, he stopped at Kaduna and established a Mission 
Station for the Yorubas who lived in the town. He baptized eighteen 
people in River Kaduna. In 1913, Mr. M A. Adeniran established the 
first Baptist Mission Station in Zaria. According to Crampton, the 
Nigerian Baptist Convention posted Reverend J.A. Adejumobi to 
Kaduna as its first Pastor to over see the rest Mission Stations of the 
Baptist faith in the Northern Nigeria in the year 1925. Furthermore, 
when the American and some of the Nigerian Missionaries worked 
together in Northern parts of the country they established a Secondary 
School at Jos, a Teacher Training College in Minna and a Seminary 
School in Kaduna.The Nigerian Baptist Convention operates nine 
theological training centers for pastors, the largest being the Nigerian 
Baptist Theological Seminary in Ogbomosho. The Nigerian Baptist 
Convention also operates several hospitals and medical institutions 
across the country. The Baptist Hospital in Ogbomosho remains one of 
the leading hospitals in Nigeria. Besides, it is used as a University 
teaching hospital by the Ladoke Akintola University jointly owned by 
Oyo and Osun states. In 1969, a separate Conference for Ilorin and 
Ka a faithful was established and it was named Kwara Baptist 
Conference. The Church has planted about 100 Mission Stations in the 
Area. Besides, a group of Longuda who broke away from the Lutheran 
faith has joined the Baptist faith in Northern Nigeria. In 1972, Etubi who 
was a missionary in the Qua Ibo Church at Idah, broke away and he 
joined the Baptist. In 1974, a second Baptist church was established at 
Idah it is named Emmanuel Baptist Church, Idah. The Baptist Mission 
has the Northern Conference Convention, which has its Headquarters at 
Beulah. It comprises Adamawa and Sardauna Provinces. The Mission 
Stations are located in the following towns, Zaria, Kano, Katsina and 
Sokoto. The Nigerian Baptist Convention has founded and operated 
several primary Schools and Secondary Schools across the nation. The 
Mission has established a University at Iwo in 2002. It is named Bowen 
University in honour of Reverend Thomas Jefferson Bowen, the first 
American Baptist Missionary from the Southern Baptist Convention. 
The named institutions above are established to convert pupils, 
Secondary school students and the post secondary school students into 
the Baptist faith in Nigeria to date. 
In 1969, a separate Conference for Ilorin and Kaba faithfuls was 
established and it was named Kwara Baptist Conference. The Church 
has planted about 100 Mission Stations in the Area. Besides, a group of 
Longuda who broke away from the Lutheran faith has joined the Baptist 
faith in Northern Nigeria. In 1972, Etubi, who was a Missionary in the 
Qua Ibo Church at Idah, broke away and he joined the Baptist. In 1974, 
a second Baptist Church was established at Idah, it was named 
Emmanuel Church, Idah. The Baptist Mission has the Nortern 
Conference Convention, which has its Headquarters at Beulah. The 
Mission Stations were located in the following towns: Zaria, Kano, 
Katsina and Sokoto The Nigerian Baptist Convention has founded and 
operated several Primary Schools and Secondary Scho ols across the 
nation. The Mission established a University at Iwo in 2002. It is named 
Bowen University in honour of Reverend Thomas Jefferson Bowen, the 
first American Baptist Missionary from the Southern Baptist 
Convension. 

3.3 The Planting of Christianity in Ondo Area

In 1853, David Hinderer introduced Christianity in Ibadan. In 1856, 
Christianity was established in Ilesha. In 1859, Christianity was planted 
in Ile- Ife. In 1875, David Hinderer introduced Christianity in Ode, 
Ondo. In 1877, Charles Philips was posted to take over from 
Hinderer.This was during the period that Oba Ajimekun the then 
Osemawe of Ondo land and some of his Chiefs embraced Christianity. 
In 1876, the first worship Centre was built for Christians to worship. In 
1877, Philips demanded for another land to build a bigger place of 
worship in the town because the population of Christians increased 
daily. The land that was given to the Christians to build a Church was 
the land of the evil spirits. It was a place where people who died 
unpleasant death were buried. The evil forest was allocated to Christians 
in order to discourage them from serving Jesus Christ. The adherents of 
the traditional religion hoped that Christians would be afflicted with 
incurable diseases. However, the Church accepted the land and their 
spiritual leader in person of Philips prayed over the land for God’s 
protection. On the land, there was an Iroko tree that the Ondo people 
elieved that evil spirits inhabited. The adherents of Christianity prayed 
on the site for seven days and the tree that was believed to be the abode 
of witches fell down. The Christians cleared the tree away from the site 
and they built a Church on the land. There they worship the Living God. 
It was reported that Philips cared for the people spiritually and 
materially. The Christians built Schools and Colleges in Ondo area. 
Many people were trained in those institutions that were established by 
Christians in the town. The first Primary School was built in Ondo in 
1890 by the Missionaries. There pupils were taught Christian education. 
The old pupils of the School can be found in all parts of Nigeria 
occupying important political, social, economics and administrative 
positions. They are also in law, politics, medicine, theology, technology 
and education all over the country. The Christians in Ondo area made 
use of the converts to spread the Good News to others in Nigeria. In 1879, Ondo town was affected by small- pox. The mortality rate was 
high, and it was reported that about ten people died daily in the town. 
The traditional Chiefs gave a heifer to Sango priest to offer as sacrifice 
of propitiation. However, Philips and Christians in the town were able 
to inform the people that the disease came there because of their 
disobedience to the commandments of God. The Living God used it to 
punish them for their evil acts to fellow human beings in the town. 
However, the Lord God demanded from them repentance from their 
wicked deeds. It was noticed that none of the Christians was reported 
dead, except two people who were affected and later received healing as 
the Church prayed for them and they repented from their sins. The 
Church prayed for the forgiveness of sins of the entire people of Ondo 
town, and God heard their prayers and the disease vanished form Ondo 
town. This made many people to join the Church.
Another important thing that Christianity brought to Ondo town was the 
introduction of corrugated iron sheets for roofing houses instead of 
leaves that had been previously in use. Many people in Ondo town 
roofed their houses with iron sheets. The Christians also made the 
people to stop the act of burying living slaves with their masters when 
they die. The Christians also introduced the planting of economic trees, 
such as cocoa and breadfruit to farmers in Ondo area in 1890.Reverend 
Charks Philips distributed the seeds of the trees to Ondo farmers to plant 
in their various farms which later brought to them economic reward.
Reverend Charks Philips succeeded against the power of darkness and 
illiteracy in Ondo area. He died in 1906. It is a testimony to his efforts 
that the spread of Christianity continues in Ondo area after his death.

3.4 The Planting of Christianity in Ibadan

Reverend David Hinderer introduced Christianity in Ibadan around 
1854. He was a German Missionary of the Church Missionary Society. 
It was Reverend Henry Townsend who was then at Abeokuta who paid a 
visit to the town during the reign of Baale Ope Agbe and requested a 
mission station for the area. Townsend returned to Abeokuta and 
requested for more Missionaries from his Mission. In 1852, Hinderer 
established a mission station at Ibadan. Many Evangelists were also 
posted to him and he sent them to open mission stations in various 
towns, such as, Iwo, Ilesha, Modakeke, Ile- Ife and Oshogbo to mention 
just a few places. In April 1896, the Church Missionary Society 
established a Training Institute in Oyo. There they trained professional 
teachers, but the students in the School looked to the priesthood as their 
mentor. The college in question is now crown as the Ajayi Crowther 
University, Oyo. In 1900, the Mission established an Institute in 
Oshogbo to train vernacular evangelists for the spread of the Gospel in Yoruba land. On the other hand, the Baptists likewise built the Baptist 
College,at Iwo. In 1901, the Wesleyans established Wesley College at 
Ibadan.

3.5 The Introduction of Christianity in Ikare-Akoko Area

The introduction of Christianity in Ikare-Akoko Area took place in 
various routes. In 1870, one Michael Badoro at Okela quarters in Ikare, 
returned from slavery and preached the Gospel to his people. 
Christianity was also introduced in the area through Lokoja in Kogi 
State, Nigeria in 1883. The Anglican priest named J.J. Williams who 
was the vicar of the Holy Trinity Church, Lokoja, spread the Gospel to 
the area in 1883. At the same period, many non-native traders, rubber�tapers, saw millers, produce buyers, and Christian sojourners who were 
soldiers in Ikare area also spread Christianity in Akoko area. Mention 
could be made of David Oluguna and Peter Arowolo, natives of Ilesha 
who were traders. In 1910, Reverend H.F. Gani, the Superintendent of 
Owo, Ogori, and Akoko Churches visited the Ikare Church. He 
influenced the Anglican Church authorities in Lagos Diocese to merge 
the Akoko Churches to Yoruba Mission. In 1915, Mr Aiyebusi became 
the Church administrator in Ikare Mission stations. He imposed Church 
wedding on Christians. Adherents who could not comply with Aiyebusi 
on the marriage order, left the Anglican Church. They established 
African Church in Ikare. Despite the break away of some members, 
Saint Stephen’s Church Ikare began to exercise the leadership role 
among Ikare Churches from 1915 to 1920. On 29 September 1920, Mr 
Lackland Augustus Lennon, a Jamaican was posted to Saint Stephen’s 
Church Ikare, as an administrator. In 1922, he was ordained Priest at 
Owo and returned to Ikare Mission Area. In 1924, the Bishop of Lagos 
Diocese, Melville Jones authorized Lennon to extend the spread of 
Christianity to Kaba, Ebira and Akoko-Edo areas. Lennon established 
schools in those areas to convert children. 
In 1922, Lennon established Post Office at Ikare. By the middle of 
1940’s, the Ministry of Communications, Nigeria, took over the Post 
Office.
In 1923, Lennon built a magnificent office and he allocated a room to 
his wife, Mrs. M. Lennon to serve as dispensary to Ikare people. Many 
people, who were not Christians but benefited from the Clinic, became 
Christians.
In 1922-1925, Lennon, Chief Ajaguna and Momoh gave able leadership 
to the people of Ikare to construct Ikare-Owo road.
In 1943, Lennon was appointed a parliament member to represent the 
Western-Region in the house of parliament in Lagos. His cordial 
relationship with Christians and other faith members in Akoko area, 
earned him popularity among them. Lennon used the opportunity that 
was offered him in the House of Parliament to appeal for essential 
amenities for the people of Ikare. However, the government could not 
meet his demands due to the Second World War that had just ended for 
it had affected the economy and the finance of Nigeria. Based on this, 
Reverend Lennon advised that the Ikare people levied every taxable 
male some amounts along with their yearly poll tax. He made it clear to 
the people of Ikare that if they could produce the materials and used 
direct labour methods for the pipe borne water and the light projects, the 
government would render the technological assistance for the Ikare 
community. The people yielded to the advice of Lennon. Between 1943 
and early 1950 pipe borne water and electricity were provided in Ikare 
area. Many non- Christians who witnessed the events became 
Christians. Lennon advised Christians to participate in Nigeria politics 
in order for them to bring light into the Country.
In January 1921, Reverend Lennon established a Primary School at 
Ikare. He christened it Saint Stephen’s School, Ikare-Akoko. On 23rd 
September, 1935, Lennon established Jubilee Central School to train 
Pupil-teachers, clerks, Church workers and would -be students for Saint 
Andrew’s Teachers College, Oyo, Oyo State, [now Bishop Ajayi 
Crowther University, Oyo, Nigeria]. Lennon left Nigeria on 7 July 1951 
for his home country, Jamaica [Akeredolu, 1986.] 
 

3.6 The Problems Encountered by Christians in Spreading 

Christianity in Yoruba Land 
This course material seeks to discuss the contact of Christianity 
with Islam in the Yoruba land. It has been discovered by Scholars that 
Islamic religion predated Christianity in Nigeria. Islam had been 
planted and nurtured in the land before the introduction of 
Christianity. Besides, Islamic propagators in Nigeria were Africans 
who were accustomed to the harsh climatic conditions and diseases 
of the land. These Islamic scholars continued spreading Islam faith 
in the land.
They also established Quranic Schools where children were taught 
of Arabic language as the official one in spreading Islamic 
religion in Yoruba land. For this reason, the Muslim 
community had grown both in size and stature ever before the 
coming of Christianity into Yoruba land. The contact of
Christianity and Islam created many problems for Christianity at 
the initial stage of expansion in the land. Among these problems 
in the wheel of was bad climate. The climate served as a great 
arrier against the efforts of foreign missionaries who came to 
plant Christianity in Yoruba land. This is because they were not 
used to the tropical climate of the land.
For instance, some missionaries died of heat -stroke caused by the 
heat of the sun. Malaria was another disease militating against 
the progress of Christianity in Yoruba land. It could be recalled 
that right from 1841, which was the period of the Niger 
expedition, malaria was a very significant barrier to the spread 
of Christianity in Nigeria. About one hundred and thirty-six 
out of one hundred and forty-five Europeans who took part in 
the expedition died of malaria and they were buried at Lokoja in 
Kogi State. Their graves remain in Lokoja town up till date. For 
the reasons mentioned above, the spread of Christianity in Lokoja 
area stopped for the main time. But, for Muslims, their religion 
continue to spread in the land for their propagators were 
Africans who had all natural endowment in terms of energy 
and natural adaptability to the situation in the tropic. Islam came 
in Yoruba land by land. The early propagators did not face the sea 
problems encountered by the propagators of Christianity since most 
of its propagators came from the hinterland. The Christian 
missionaries were also faced with the problem of language, a 
problem which created a favorable avenue for Islam to spread 
since Islam was propagated by Yoruba –speaking people. 
Consequently, Islam had an edge over Christianity. In this 
situation, the Christians in the Yoruba land were not happy at the 
rapid expansion of Islam in the land. As a result, some measures 
were adopted either to limit the rate of the spread of Islam in the 
area or to help in their own way of spreading Christianity in the 
same manner as Islam. To achieve this goal, the following efforts 
were made by the Christians. Native Clergy learnt Arabic language 
which they used in spreading the gospel in the Muslim populated areas. 
Schools were built to educate Yoruba children in order to attract their 
parents to become Christians. 
However, the strategies such as discussion on Christian faith, 
preaching, baptism and training the native Clergy in Arabic 
language adopted by the Christian missionaries to counter the 
rapid growth of Islam in Yoruba land had little or no effect , 
ut they were most successful through the use of education and 
health-care delivery strategies. All these, we shall discuss in other 
units of this course. But an example is mentioned below. 
In 1922, Lack land Augustus Lennon used the above-mentioned 
methods spread Christianity in Ikare-Ikare Akoko area of Ondo State. 
In Schools and Hospitals, the Christian missions had all the resources within their control to serve as magnet to attract 
adherents of other religions in Yoruba land to the Christian 
faith. Moreover, in some areas, this method did not work. This is 
ecause the adherents of Islam had also introduced Quranic 
schools that served as alternative to the type of Christian�sponsored schools to train their children.
From the whole episode, it seems that right from the beginning of 
the contact of Islam with Christianity in the Yoruba land, the two 
religions have been witnessing a kind of revivalism with a view to 
winning souls from one to the other faith. On other hand, both 
religions have several things in common including the belief in 
One Creator who had sent many prophets, The only Son of God 
Jesus Christ the Messiah of mankind. Muslim hold Muhammad as 
the Prophet to mankind. They both claim Abraham as their ancestor 
and both teach morals and peace.
However, Christianity teaches Trinity to their adherents, which 
Islam did not accept. This makes Islam and Christianity to become 
rivals in the Yoruba land.
3.7 Steps Taken by Misionaries to Minimize Their
Problems in the Yoruba land
During the period that arrangements were being made for Niger 
Expedition and a mission was projected for the model farm at 
Lokoja, the mother Church of Anglican in London, assigned 
duties to Reverends J.F. Schon and Samuel Ajayi Crowther to 
train interpreters and themselves to learn the languages of the 
people of Nigeria that could help them communicate with 
Nigerians.
Schon chose Hausa and Ibo languages. While Samuel Ajayi Crowther 
studied Yoruba language for the same purpose. Other missionaries in 
Yoruba land also studied Yoruba language. In 1852, Samuel Ajayi 
Crowther published an enlarged edition of Yoruba Grammar 
and Vocabulary as well as translations of four books of the New 
Testament.
Professor Carl Lepsius guided the Church Missionary Society 
linguistic studies in Hausa, Kanuri, Ibo and Ijaw. While Bowen a 
Baptist missionary also learnt Yoruba language and drew the 
attention of the missionaries to the poetic excellence of the invocative 
prayers of traditional Yoruba worship, especially those of Ifa for 
use in Christian worship by Christians in the Yoruba land. His 
works were published in volumes of the Smithsonian contributions 
to knowledge in New York. Crowther and Thomas King translated 
the Bible and the Prayer book into Yoruba language for the Yoruba 
Christians. In 1854, another expedition was sent up the River Niger by 
the Crown Colony. The British Government and Macgregor Laird 
organized the expedition. The aim of the trip was to introduce legitimate 
trade and plant Christianity in the Niger-Benue area. According to 
Crampton, many of the explorers were Africans. The white men were 
very few at this period this was due to the death of many of them that 
died during the first expedition that took place in the year 1841. The few 
white men that accompanied the black men to the upper Niger-Benue 
came with quinine, which they used to cure malaria whenever they were 
attacked. Bishop Ajayi Crowther left the Yoruba Mission and joined the 
expedition. At the period in question, every body that made the journey 
ack alive for there was no report of death among the explorers. In 
1857, the Crown Colony, the Church Missionary and some traders made 
another journey to the area in question. While they got to Idah in Kogi 
State, the Attah of Igala land did not ground them permission to 
establish a Mission Station there. However, he sent some of his servants 
to accompany them to the confluence area. He told them to sell the war 
sport to the explorers so that they could settle there and help him wage 
war against the Nupe warriors who used to wage war against the people 
of Igala. The Attah of Igala land named Ocheji, sold the land to them for 
700,000 cowries or goods worth of the amount. On the land, were the 
following buildings; Gbobe Chapel, Schools, a College and The Holy 
Trinity Cathedral Church, Lokoja, which is always headed by Lokoja 
indigenes in fulfilment of the prophecy of Lieutenant Glover in 1862. 
He wrote a private letter to the Authority of the Church Missionary 
Society in England that the Confluence area which was bought would be 
the area where future great Bishops that would be produced. He wrote 
‘this Lairdstown will be the ground of a future great bishopric.’ Today 
there are many sons of Lokoja area that are Bishops, mention could be 
made of Ferron, Bako, Akanyan, and Igbunu to mention just a few of 
them. No any priest outside the area was made a bishop except the 
retired Bishop Haruna who was trained by Lennon, a missionary at 
Ikare- Akoko in Ikare,who was consecrated the Bishop of the Kwara 
Anglican Diocese, Offa, but later, the headquarters of the Diocese was 
moved to Ilorin. However, if the policy that was laid down by Glover is 
amended in the Lokoja Diocese, then other priests that are not an 
indigene of Lokoja area may be considered by the Anglican Communion 
in Nigeria to be consecrated bishop. If not, the Lokoja indigenes will 
continue to be bishop in the area.
Other People that Helped in the Spread of the Gospel in 
Yoruba Land 
The Creoles, that is, the freed slaves that were Nigerians, 
especially, the Yorubas contributed immensely to the planting of 
Christianity in Yoruba land. Another group that helped in the 
planting of Christianity in Yoruba land were noble persons; that 
is, men of local prominence who on their own initiative invited 
and patronized missionaries; among such people were Sodeke of 
Egba land and the Chief of Badagry. The lay converts, especially 
traders who acted as a group used their social powers to aid the 
establishment of missions in Yoruba land. Catechists, 
Evangelists, Church elders and School teachers were also used 
to plant Christianity in Yoruba land.
In addition to these, Congregations which pioneered expansion of 
Christianity to other parts of Yoruba land and paid for the 
upkeep of ministers also helped in the planting of Christianity in 
Yoruba land through financial aids.
Mention could be made of All Saints Anglican Church Yaba, 
that paid for the upkeep of ministers. Furthermore, local 
communities built, maintained Church and school infrastructures for 
the spread of the Gospel in Yoruba land. Another set of people 
that helped in the planting of Christianity in Yoruba land were 
the Charismatic, or Prophet figures who quickened the planting 
of the religion in their brief careers in the land.
SELF ASSESSMENT EXERCISE
The freed slaves of Yoruba land started the planting of Christianity 
in Badagry. Discuss.
4.0 CONCLUSION
This unit has taught you to know some of the problems that 
were encountered by Christians in the planting of Christianity in 
Yoruba land. Among these problems were the harsh climatic 
conditions and diseases of the land. The missionaries also faced 
the problem of language which they could use to preach the 
Gospel to the people of Yoruba land.
They also encountered opposition from adherents of other religions in 
their quest to win converts. In this unit, you also learnt about some 
steps that were taken to minimize some problems that were 
encountered by the missionaries in Yoruba land.
SUMMARY
Having gone through this unit, you would have understood the 
following points:
The Methodist Mission got to the Yoruba land around 1840.
The Yoruba freed slave settlers appealed to the Queen of 
England to establish a Colony in Badagry. They also demanded for 
missionaries be sent to them at Badagry to continue the spread of 
Christianity in Yoruba land.
The freed slaves in Sierra-Leone joined the settlers at Badagry and 
appealed for more missionaries for Badagry land. Reverends 
Thomas Birch Freeman and William de Graft responded to the 
requests of the settlers of Badagry and arrived in town on 24 
September, 1842 to plant Christianity there.. Schools and Hospitals 
were used as means to convert people into Christianity in the 
Yoruba land. The Missionaries had problems of language, diseases 
and oppositions from other religion in the land. The Missionaries 
learnt some Nigerian languages and they made used of them to write 
the Bible for Nigerians to use.
 
6.0 TUTOR-MARKED ASSIGNMENT
1. Enumerate the problems that the early Missionaries faced in 
the planting of Christianity in Yoruba land.
2. Assess the spread of Christianity in Yoruba land between 
1840 and 1842. 
3. Explain some of the steps taken by the Missionaries to 
minimize their problems in the Yoruba land during the early 
periods of the gospel in the area.
 
7.0 REFERENCES/FURTHER READINGS
 
Ade Ajayi, J. F. (1977). Christian Missions in Nigeria 1841-1891. The 
Making of a New Elite, London: Longman Groups Ltd. 
Geoffry Parrinder (1969).Africa’s Three Religions, London: Sheldon 
Press Ltd.
 
Oshitelu G.A. (2002).Expansion of Christianity in West Africa, 
Abeokuta: Visual Resources Publishers.
 Kalu, O.U (1980). The History of Christianity in West African Essays 
Lectures, London: Longmans Groups Ltd.

Post a comment

0 Comments