The world was greeted with the sad news of the demise of South Korean preacher, Pastor David Paul Yonggi Cho, who passed on at about 7:13 am on Tuesday, September 14, 2021.
The revered preacher is celebrated for overseeing the ministerial activities of the largest faith-based auditoriums in the world. That said, below are 7 facts about Yonggi Cho you should know.
1. Co-founded of Yoido Full Gospel Church
The South Korean Christian minister, Pastor Dr. David Yonggi Cho co-founded the Yoido Full Gospel Church alongside Choi Ja-shil, his mother-in-law.
The Famous pastor who died at the age of 85 was born on February 14, 1936, in Ulju-gun, South Korea to a Buddhist family, but converted to Christianity at the age of 17. That is to insinuate that he was not a Christian by birth.
David Yonggi went through a rough path to acquire education due to financial constraints. He enrolled in an inexpensive technical high school after graduation from middle school to learn a trade when his father could not afford to send him to university.
Cho only managed to learn and master English quickly through a soldier he befriended at an American army base near the school he was learning the trade. He, however, eventually became an interpreter for the commander of the army base, and also for the principal of his school.
Cho was sentenced to three years imprisonment in 2014 following the press conference held by 30 elders of the church accusing the late of defalcating 12 million dollars in church funds.
Prior to that period, he had also been accused of privatizing church assets in addition to embezzling the sum of 20 million dollars.
5. Health challenges
Cho was diagnosed with pulmonary tuberculosis in his second year of high school. As a matter of fact, he had converted from Buddhism to Christianity to seek remedy to his health issue having been convinced by a female doctor who visited and told him about Jesus’s miracle when he was 17 years old.
He wrote in a statement on his church’s website: “I will never forget God’s blessing and grace over my life, through which He chose me to be His Servant when I was just an insignificant child with lung disease, and He saved me by His grace through the atonement of the Cross of Jesus Christ….. ”
6. Service extension
The late preacher had over 500 church locations across South Korea and had sent thousands of missionaries to countries across the globe.
Cho stated: “All I did was offer my life just like the boy who gave the five loaves and two fish… I simply held on to the dreams that the Lord gave me, and it was He who grew Yoido Full Gospel Church to 750,000 members to become the World’s largest church. ”
7. Ministerial pursuit
Yonggi Cho opened a tent church in Seoul two years after graduation from Full Gospel College in 1956.
Later on, the tent church turned into Yoido Full Gospel Church as popularly known today.
His first worship service at the Daejo Church which had in attendance only four people now has more than 750,000 members! Is that not great enough?
Pastor Paul Yonggi Cho will no doubt go down in history as one of the most impactful preachers of his generation.