Nollywood actor, Jimmy Odukoya, recently succeeded his late dad, Taiwo Odukoya, as senior pastor of the Fountain of Life Church. Prior to the new position, Odukoya led a vibrant career in ministry and served as a pastor in TFOLC and The Cave Church.
“The Woman King” actor’s appointment has since stirred mixed reactions from Nigerian Christian faithfuls. Questions have been raised about his acting profession, but did you know he’s not the only Nigerian celebrity combining ministry with a thriving career in entertainment?
Here are seven others you should know about.
In 2020, the musician-turned-actor was ordained a full-time pastor at Tony Rapu’s This Present House Church. A visit to the singer’s official Instagram page features several videos of him preaching to large congregations. Since he became a pastor, Banky has dropped an album, ran for office and released a song with gospel musician, Mercy Chinwo.
The former singer first shared the news that he’d become a born-again Christian in 2016. The years that follow would see Lynxx maintaining a balance that tilts closer toward his spiritual life.
His last known work in entertainment was a feature in the 2022 Netflix film, Glamour Girls. These days, Lynxx proudly wears his tag as a life and spiritual growth coach.
The veteran entertainer is as vocal about her work as an actress as she is with her evangelism. She has gained a reputation for taking on spiritually inclined journeys for Nigeria in turbulent times. In February 2023, ahead of the general elections, her prayer request for a peaceful election season went viral on social media.
Famous for her wicked step-mother-inclined roles in Nollywood, the veteran actress doubles as a woman of God. In a 2019 interview, Ozokwor stressed that there’s no divide between her career as an actress and her ministry.
“You know, we do drama in the church. It is like I am preaching. I say that the movie industry preaches to the whole world. A pastor can be in his church and be preaching to the people there, but the movies go very far with their stories. It is part of what I am doing.”
She was Mother in Nollywood; an iconic queen who delivered a masterclass on how to act anytime she showed up on the screen. However, in February 2012, Anunobi was ordained as a minister of God at the Fresh Oil Ministry International Church. These days, she juggles her ministerial duties with appearances on small-budget Nollywood productions on YouTube.
Illegal hitmaker, Pepenazi, sent a shock wave through social media in September 2022 after he was seen preaching the gospel in a video shared on his Instagram page. He captioned the clip: “The world cannot give you the satisfaction you need! It is only Jesus! that can satisfy your soul. Start your week by establishing a relationship with him and make a decree on what you want him to purge out of your life. He is a beacon.”
The months that follow will see Pepenazi sharing more Instagram videos preaching the gospel and letting people know where he stands. Although he still proudly wears the tag of singer, rapper and songwriter.
The media personality started his spiritual career kicking back against Nigerian pastors like Enoch Adeboye and Paul Adefarasin, among others. He’d later start his own online church, Free The Sheeple Movement, dissecting the word of God for his followers and hosting questions and answers.
Freeze combines his work as a minister with his full-time job as a media personality.