We are pleased to announce that Tayo Arikawe, one of our CMMW directors, will be joining London City Mission's leadership team, moving from his role at Grace Evangelistic Ministries Europe, where he has been the International Director for the past five years. London City Mission is an 182-year-old organisation which exists to serve the church of London in sharing the love of God and the good news of Jesus Christ with the least reached of the city.
This follows the appointment of another of our CMMW directors, Dr Harvey Kwiyani, as a lecturer in African Christianity and Theology at Liverpool Hope University.
To find out more about Tayo's appointment, have a read of London City Mission's interview with him below...
Tayo, have you always ministered in London?
No, actually, I am not currently based in London, but I am really looking forward to moving and settling into this vibrant and diverse city.
I am originally from Nigeria, where I initially trained as a Geologist and Mineral Scientist, but I have always had a passion for Christian ministry.
I was a missionary pastor in Africa for over ten years before I was employed by Kensington Baptist Church, Bristol as Associate Pastor. I served in this role for about four and half years. During this period, I helped to develop the multi-cultural vision of the church and was involved in two church plants in Bristol.
I then moved to my present role as the International Director for Grace Evangelistic Ministries Europe. I've been developing and promoting mission partnerships and training in many countries across Europe and some parts of West Africa. I've enjoyed training church leaders in Bible Exposition, theology and cross- cultural/multi-cultural ministries. I'm also one of the directors at the Center for Missionaries from the Majority World, London (CMMW).
What kind of training have you had to prepare you for those roles?
I am an ordained Minister with the Evangelical Grace Churches in USA. I trained in Oral Bible Exposition at Cornhill Training Centre in London, studied for a Masters in Theology, with a focus on Theology in Scriptural/Church context at the University of Chester, and am currently studying for a PhD in Biblical Studies at the University of Gloucester. My PhD is focusing on how ethnicity plays a major role in the epistle of Paul to the Romans. I am passionate to see the development of more gospel driven multi-cultural and multi-ethnic churches, ministries and partnerships in the UK.
What vision do you have for this opportunity with London City Mission?
My vision for this new role is to see myself and all LCM team members become more mature and more rooted in Christ and together establish more strategic mission partnerships with London churches for the purpose of taking Jesus to the least reached people of London.
I'm really excited about this role because of the great opportunities that it brings in order to impact London city with the message of Jesus Christ. If the gospel takes root in London, the ripple effects will spill over to the whole of the United Kingdom and to other countries in Europe. London is a major hub for global mission. Almost all major ethnic groups in the world have some presence in London. What a great opportunity to be part of a team that wants to share the love of Jesus with these ethnic groups, most especially the least reached. This is a true reflection of the great commission in Matthew 28. But instead of traveling all over the world, these ethnic groups have come over to London. The universe is truly next door to us now!! What an exciting moment in history of mission!
As well as study and ministry, can you share with us something about yourself?
As well as being Nigerian, I am British by naturalisation. I am married to my beautiful wife Calista and we have a ten year old son, Mekus. We are a very warm Christian African family that love to welcome people to our home, without having to book appointments for several weeks or months in advance!! I also enjoy reading and sharing fellowship with others.
Finally, what can we be praying for you as you transition out of Grace Evangelistic Ministries Europe and into London City Mission?
Thank you. If you’d like to pray, I would really value prayer for:
- wisdom and guidance from God to fulfil his plan in this role.
- my family as we plan to relocate to London. London has a very different cultural context from Bristol and so please pray that we would adjust and find the right community in which to live.
- doors of the gospel to be opened to preach Christ in the city.
- a fruitful ministry shared with the entire London City Mission team.
This interview first appeared on the London City Mission website.