Cotonou, Benin—On July 28th, Thomas Yayi Boni, the President of Benin, paid a special visit to the 2013 IYF World Camp in Benin.
A previous meeting with Pastor Ock Soo Park compelled the president to come witness World Camp festivities firsthand.
The President and his entourage, which included the Ministries of Youth, Innovation, and the Port Authority, as well as congressmen, department ministers, businessmen, and educational leaders, eventually descended on the Palais de Congres National Theater.
The photo above shows Pastor Ock Soo Park greeting the president at the entrance of the venue. IYF World Camp attendees greeted the president with thunderous rounds of applause and a standing ovation. We were witnessing a miracle only God could produce.
Gracias Choir performed a beautiful set of performances as soon as the president and his party took their seats. The choir sang French songs and other famous music pieces of Benin with the president joyfully clapping along.
After the concert, Pastor Park delivered the message that God was working with IYF and for members of IYF Benin.
The President then graced the stage. As several officials flanked him on both sides, he proceeded to give a rare 40-minute speech to the attendees, stating, “The world is under the plan and control of God.” He emphasized the importance of working through the Lord and expressed his gratitude to Pastor Park for traveling such a great distance with a heart of love for the youth of Benin. The President also proclaimed, “I was a sinner, but God took away all of my sin.”
Although he admitted to his shortcomings, the president promised to do everything he could to lead the country and create jobs for its citizens. He also proclaimed his belief that the Word of God will be the thing that develops and advances Benin’s next generation youth.
It was evident that the Gospel was firmly planted in the heart of President Thomas Yayi Boni and we could feel he had sincere hope that IYF would change his young people.
There is now great anticipation for Benin’s future considering this momentous occasion of the President, his national ministers, and other prominent individuals taking the time to visit Pastor Park and IYF World Camp.