Tuesday, July 13, 2010
HOW MIKE BAMILOYE AND WIFE RUN NIGERIA’S BIGGEST GOSPEL DRAMA GROUP
No doubt, Ibadan- based Mount Zion Faith Ministries is Nigeria’s foremost and biggest drama ministry. It was founded by Evangelist Mike Bamiloye. The drama ministry actually brought a revolution to the gospel movie sector in Nigeria . Evangelist Bamiloye’s talents and creativity are outstanding as he writes the scripts of all his movies and drama series, which has earned him so much respect. The popular movie evangelist is however achieving this feat with the joint effort of his wife, Gloria, with whom he has been able to build a brand which has not only gained recognition in Nigeria but also on the global scene.
They have a very inspiring success story as they both grew the group from the scratch with barely little money to finance their project. Evangelist Mike Bamiloye actually started the ministry when he was 25 years old, and since them, he has not had any course to look back.
According to what was gathered, he received the calling to become a drama ministers at a very early stage of his life. But it wasn’t until when he was undergoing his tertiary training at the College of Education, Ile Ife, that the calling became very glaring. Then he was a scriptwriter for the Christian Fellowship Drama Group of his institution. At that time, they used to stage Christian plays in order to bring student closer to God. He was then supporting and coordinating drama group by going to churches and campuses doing evangelism through their drama ministrations. Little did he know then that his ministry was about to start. So eventually he started the Mount Zion Faith Ministries on August 5, 1985.
Interestingly his first attempt to make movies failed, but with hard work, perseverance and persistent, he was able to break- even. The failure of his first film led him into stage ministration through the leading of God, and that was how he started the drama ministration traveling from one church to the other and from one city to the other staging Christian plays.
In 1986, he staged their debut drama ministration at the National Christian Teachers Conference in Ilesa, Osun State, titled Hell in Conference, and that marked the beginning of a turn-around for the ministry. As the ministry was experiencing growth, Bamiloye finally went into film production in 1990, when he recorded and edited the “The Unprofitable Servant” which was aired on television in the Easter of 1990.
But the film that actually brought his ministry into limelight was Agbara Nla, which was actually his first TV serial. It was one series that was very popular in the 90s, and most people couldn’t do without watching it. It held most families in major parts of the country spell bound during the period. And since then, it has been one success story to another as all their movies have been block busters. They have even taking their film production to another as they now go to some nice places in Europe to shoot their movies.
And in 25 years, they have lost count on the number of movies they have produced. Notable among their drama series include; Agbara Nla, Apoti Eri, Back to Zero Point, Blood on the Altar, Busy but guilty, Captives of the Mighty, Covenant Child, Enemy of my Soul, Forgotten Ones, Foundation, Fruitless Tree, Gods are dead, Haunting Shadows, Just a little sin, One careless night, Storms of Life, The wounded heart, The Youthful lusts amongst others.
The small drama group that was formed then has now grown into a full fledge drama ministry with different department such as Drama, Drama Outreaches, Film Production, Marketing, Production Studios, Publication and Vision Carriers. A couple of years back, the ministry also started expanding to French speaking countries and it has also made its mark in those countries too.
The story of Mount Zion Faith Ministries will also not be complete without the mention of the role Mike Bamiloye’s wife, Gloria played in the building of the ministry. She can be describe as an epitome of support to the ministry. She also added glamour to the
Ministry coupled with her natural beauty, which a lot of people fell in love with. Even without make-up, she is a damsel. She also has good acting skills as she is very good in holding her viewers spell bound. She got married to her husband at a tender age of 20.
They are both alumni of the same institution, though he had graduated by the time she gained admission into the institution. It was when Mike came back to teach them Playlet that they met. He used to be like a senior and big brother. And over time, the bond between them became stronger, and it became obvious that Evangelist Mike wanted more, so when he proposed; it wasn’t an easy decision for her as she was considered too young by her parent to even think of settling down in marriage. But after stiff opposition from her families and friends, she followed her heart and the will of God for her life, and their marriage story has been a roller coaster one.
Mike Bamigboye does not joke with her as he loves and adores her. According to what we gathered, he always shows affection for her even openly. He always put her first in most of the things he does. This is because the wife is very significant of his life and ministry. To start with, he inaugurated the Ministry the same year he started courting his wife. So they actually started the ministry together before they latter got married. She on her own part is also a very loving and caring wife, and she is not even intimidated by the fact that her husband has to play some husband roles with other women in most of their movies. She rather looks at the bright side of things.
Above all, she had stood by him through thick and thin. When they got married, he was a full-time minister and it wasn’t as if the money had started rolling in. Things were very slow for them at the beginning of the ministry, but she kept supporting and encouraging him all the way. And now she is reaping the fruits of her unconditional love.
Their marriage which has existed for 22 years is blessed with 3 children who are all in the ministry. His first son is a script writer and his second son is behind all the musical effects in most of Mount Zion’s films.
Posted by Bola Akinboade