The co-founder of the church with the largest congregation in the world, Pastor David Yonggi Cho, is dead. The South Korean minister who started Yoido Full Gospel Church (Assemblies of God) with is mother-in-law died in the early hours of today, September 14, 2021. Having suffered a brain hemorrhage on July 16, 2020, he died at 85 years of age.
Yonggi Cho was born February 14, 1936 in a town now found in Ulsan city. He was raised a Buddhist and converted to Christianity when he was 17 years. He mastered the English language by frequently the military camp near his technical high school and soon became an interpreter for Ken Tize, an American evangelist.
He received a scholarship to study at Full Gospel Bible College, where he met Choi Ja-Shii, his eventual mother-in-law and ministerial partner. They co-founded Yoido Full Gospel Church in 1958 that now boasts of over 480,000 worshippers. This is considered the largest in the world.
The passing of Pastor Yonggi Cho was announced by his wife, Kim Sung Hae, and their children. Also announcing his death, the City Harvest Church’s senior pastor, Kong Hee, said on his Facebook page:
”AT 7:13AM THIS MORNING [Korean Standard Time], MY PASTOR AND SPIRITUAL FATHER, DR DAVID YONGGI CHO (1936-2021), JUST WENT HOME TO THE PRESENCE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. I LOVE YOU, DR CHO.”
Pastor Yonggi Cho had been hospitalized for 14 months after suffering a brain hemorrhage. His funeral service is slated for September 18 to be led by Reverend Billy Kim. He is to be buried on the grounds of Jasil Choi Fasting Prayer Mountain.