God is Alive: A look at Nigeria’s Zealous Christian Movements
Nigerian photographer Andrew Eseibo is known for documenting the rapid urbanization and development of Nigeria. His work explores themes around Nigeria’s culture. Esiebo incorporates multimedia and photography to explore themes of popular culture, religion, gender, politics, migration and football. We are featuring his photo essay, God is Alive that chronicles the spiritual fever taking over many parts of Nigeria.
God is at the heart of life in Nigeria. Religious spaces are found in every nook and cranny in the country.
A current wave is the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements that arose in 1970s from literate environment of Nigerian tertiary colleges and universities. The movements were lead by mobile and educated youths and kept expanding beyond the confines of the Nigerian tertiary institutions of learning to other places. By the 1970s they had formed linkages with similar movements in United States of America and grew into mega churches. A mega church can boast of hundred thousands congregation under the same place.
The late 1980s also saw the movements adopting media technologies to propagate their messages, enlisting new members and advertising themselves in the public.
They also adopted some kind of faith principles insisting that every Christian have the capacity to address any of his or her personal problems; problems of illness, problems of poverty, stagnation etc.
God is Alive is a visual exploration of the movements’ dynamic, secular codes, emotions, and excessiveness being used to express their faith at various Pentecostal gatherings. These phenomena connote hope, release and success for the faithful.