HISTORY OF ST. PAUL’S, CHURCH, FAZHI

HISTORY OF ST. PAUL’S, CHURCH, FAZHI – FAZHI ARCHDEACONRY,
DIOCESE OF KUTIGI (ANGLICAN COMMUNION):
The Church Missionary Society (CMS) began missionary activities in and around Fazhi between 1912 and 1913 during which period the training class at Kutigi was in progress. The gospel was being resisted in Kutigi so Mr. P. Gordon, who was superintending the work at Kutigi, decided to extend it to other surrounding villages. There was tremendous progress as the people learned fast portions of Scripture both writing and reading together. Sadly, this great work was cut short as Mr. P. Gordon took ill and died on 8th May, 1909 at the hospital in Baro. By 1912 the Rev. J. J. Williams and Abraham Akon, a Bassa convert from Kpata were sent to head the work of mission and the school in Kutigi. They recorded great success; about eight members were enrolled in baptism class and in 1916 Baba Solomon Ndafa Fazhi was one of the first converts to be baptized. It is significant to note that during these years several visits were paid to some of the surrounding villages, Baba Philio Jiya and Solomon Ndafa usually came to Kutigi for worship to join Baba Philip Jiya Shekpatanko and Baba Kukpafu in Kutigi.
Between 1918 and 1919 the superintendent remarked that the reports of the agents at Kutigi and Fazhi were full of encouraging news, in fact, other villages like Katamba Bologi, Emindayisa were already going to Fazhi for worship. Some agents were also coming from Bida for regular follow up discipleship training. Notable among the first converts in Fazhi were:
1. Late Baba Solomon Ndafa
2. Late Baba Paul Bake
3. Late Baba Emmanuel Audu (Ndamanu)
4. Late Baba Jacob Ndako Yisa
5. Late Baba James Ndako Shema
6. Late Baba David Legbo
7. Late Baba Joshua Aman
There were so many of them but because of the difficulty in getting spouse and forsaking idol worship, many of them drew back. Some, because of Sunday collection, harvest thanksgiving and other contributions, could not continue in the new faith. Many of them from the neighboring villages like Katamba Bologi, Emindayisa,Majiko, were coming to join them; notable among them were Baba Ndalazhi (Rev Solomon Yisa), Baba Ndaejiko, (Mr. Philip Yisa Ndagi Teacher). So it was from Fazhi that the gospel was reached out to Katamba Bologi and Emindayisa. The first church building was a hut subsequently as the members’ increases church was rebuilt and the present church structure is the fourth church building. Today Fazhi serves as the seat of Archdeaconry.
Some of the visiting church agents from Bida were Papa Ndagi, Rev. Sheshi et al.
During these years of development, St. Paul’s church, Fazhi enjoyed the ministry of many servants of God. These Evangelists and Priests include:
1. Papa Mike Niku – (Late)
2. Papa Jegede Bassa – (Late)
3. Papa Sule Eshiti – (Late)
4. Papa Solomon Gana – (Late)
5. Papa Jacob Majinko – (Late)
6. Papa Nathaniel Kolo Gaba later became Venerable – (Late)
7. Teacher Dangana – (Late)
8. Papa Michael Ndaeji Gaba – (Late)
9. Rev. David Sheshi Doko – (Late)
10. Rev. Solomon Yisa Katamba Bologi – (Late)
11. Rev. Joshua Mayaki – (Late)
12. Rev. Isaiah Tsado Gbadafu now Rev. Canon (Rtd)
13. Rev. James Yisa Doko now Venerable
14. Rev. Silas Yisa Katamba Bologi now Venerable
15. Rev. David Jiya Danko now Venerable
16. Rev. Solomon Audu Fazhi later Venerable – (Late)
17. Rev. Canon Jonathan K. Yisa Doko now Venerable
18. Rev. Stephen Aliyu – (Late)
19. Rev. Canon David Gana Kopa now Venerable
20. Rev. Canon Jeremiah Mamman
21. Ven. Tseja Elias Mopa – the incumbent

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