The history of Christ’s Chosen Church of God international holds great teachings and testimony for any believer who understands the steadfastness, uprightness, and uncompromising nature of God. The history of the church shows the awesomeness and the mighty working power of the Holy Spirit.
The church was born with the name, “St. Joseph Apostolic” into a Nigeria world in which the people’s struggle was mainly political and against colonial rule. Nigeria was forming and the organizing political scene was filled with negotiation both at home for party supremacy and in Britain for national recovery, alongside this struggle, the conventional churches also had this struggle largely about their character, their method and rituals.
Converts came to the church not only from the cracks on the conventional churches, but also from the strongholds of worshipers in the heathen environs. More and more homes were getting disillusioned with idol worshiping and were increasingly finding solace in the lord Jesus. In a short time, St. Joseph’s Apostolic Church spread branches all over Bendel (then part of We stem Region of Nigeria).
The leader of this new church was Joseph Ikechukwu Anyanwu, known more by his faithful as, “the Elect of God” He soon dropped ‘Anyanwu’ from his name and retained his first name because, according to him, it was Joseph Ikechukwu that God called, not Anyanwu. He was a man of exceptional ability.
Ajagbodudu in Sapele area of old Bendel State, ( now Delta State) was where the earliest root of the church was planted. It was the village where Joseph Ikechukwu was called in 1949 from his daily labour in palm oil production to the vineyard of God.
The rules and Conducts of St. Joseph’s Chosen church of God was presented In 1964 as the constitution of the church
By 1967 the ministers of God in the Service of the church had increased greatly. The classifications only seek to highlight the trends in the church’s career plan. The ministers in the active service, who benefited from this plan and survived the founding rigors of the time, rose to be the ones blessed with leadership positions in later years.
The years of Ikechukwu ascendancy, ending in 1967, were the glorious years in the history of St. Joseph’s Chosen Church Of God. Thereafter, it faced a withered state, a parting of the ways, then a metamorphosis upon which Christ’s Chosen Church of God became a rejuvenation.
Apostle Joseph Ikechukwu however succumbed to the tempting of the Devil during the period of the Nigeria Civil War of 1966 – 1969. In order not to mislead the flock of Christ by strange and ungodly doctrine of polygamy, the Church hierarchy was force into a prolonged legal battle with Ikechukwu. The name Christ’s Chosen Church of God International was the divine product of the legal Victory.
Meanwhile, after the 1970 excommunication order on Ikechukwu and through the directive of the Holy Spirit, a new leader was chosen for the church and appointed Apostle in 1971. The man Samuel Eriamiatoe Agbonifo who took over rule until 1992 when he joined the saint Triumphant. Technically & legally speaking, Samuel Agbonifo thus became the founding Spiritual leader of Christ’s Chosen Church of God International. As spiritual Leader, he governed the church as chairman, church council with councilors who were very vibrant and robust. The man, most Snr. Apostle Samuel Agbonifo was a well-traveled missionary who took the church for the first time to Asia and Europe.
From 1993 to 1st May, 2003, another technocrat, by the name Joseph Omosefe Eguasa ruled the church. As leader of the church, he was known and addressed as ‘His Grace Most Snr. Apostle Prof. Joseph Omosefe Eguasa, JP Spiritual leader and Chairman church Council. In his time, the church expanded nationwide and internationally, opening an Apostolate in Canada and more than 300 branches in Nigeria. As part of his work, he opened six schools, Nursery, Primary and secondary known as Christ’s Chosen Group of Schools, three in 1997 and the other three in 2000.
Building on the vision of Apostle Agbonifo who had given the church a big Cathedral, Apostle Egusa purchased a large expanse of land adjoining the cathedral complex and subsequently did the foundation laying in the year 2002 for an ultra-modern 60,000 seater auditorium. He was 86 years when he completed his work on the 1st of May 2003, His Grace Most Snr. Apostle Prof. Peter Osagiede JP., Apostle Eguasa’s deputy, took over officially August 2003 as spiritual leader and chairman church council. His period witnessed the growth in the overseas apostolate, a revival in the youth and women fellowships of the church and the commencement of construction work in the auditorium project started by Apostle Eguasa. A well – traveled missionary, Apostle Osagiede died at the age of 67 years on the 24th of June, 2007.
As God will have it Most Snr Apostle Dr Joshua Edenabuohien Osemwegie Osasuyi JP MFR at the age of 71 took over as Spiritual Leader / General Overseer and Chairman Church Council on Saturday, 1st September 2007. As part of his reform agenda, the title “His Grace” used by previous Spiritual Leaders was scrapped. Also, the widows of all the previous spiritual leaders who should have received their pay for five years are now on the pay roll of the church for life.
Today, the church has an imposing Global Office built and commissioned by this great man of God at one international headquarters in Km 8 Benin Agbor Road, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria.
Apostle Osasuyi has also built a magnificent axis at Abuja for the Christ’s Chosen Group of Schools at Gwaripa in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).