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Transformation Church Pastor Mike Todd: From Sound Guy to Leader of a Multimillion-Dollar Megachurch

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Mike Todd has grown in popularity over the last few years, seemingly coming out of nowhere to become the leader of Transformation Church, a vibrant multiethnic Oklahoma ministry.

Todd’s spirited preaching style and unconventional sermon illustrations have gained him attention on social media over the years. But his bestselling books, social media savvy, and compelling charisma have solidified him as an influencer and a spiritual leader of his generation.

Family and Leadership

Michael Todd was born on November 15, 1986, making him 37 years old. He became the lead pastor of Transformation Church in February 2015. Todd served as the soundman for Transformation Church before he was called to lead the Tulsa, Oklahoma, congregation.

A major emphasis for Todd when he took over as lead pastor was guiding Transformation Church into becoming a multiethnic congregation.

“Being a young [B]lack leader that took over for an established older [W]hite leader, in a more progressive/traditional Pentecostal-Charismatic church in the middle of what was considered by many the “hood” of Tulsa — let’s just say the odds were stacked against us to see MULTI-ETHNIC church gatherings actually happen in real life! (Shouldn’t be this way…but it is what it is!),” Todd previously shared on social media.

The diversity among worshippers began to change “supernaturally” as “God started to grow our ministry,” he said.

Although Todd has been more visible publicly, both he and his wife, Natalie, serve Transformation Church as lead pastors. The couple has four children.

Criticism and Applause

Pastor Todd is known to preach with authenticity. He unapologetically shares his struggles and vulnerabilities. His transparency appears to resonate deeply with the reported thousands of viewers who watch him preach online weekly.

Although his charismatic preaching style tends to attract viewers, there has been controversy about how he has chosen to illustrate his messages. For example, in 2022, Todd took to the internet to apologize for a sermon illustration that involved him smearing his spit on another man’s face. Amid online outrage and after several news articles emerged, Todd made a video statement admitting that the spit illustration was “disgusting” and a “distraction.”

However, the controversy surrounding Todd’s preaching style doesn’t seem to overshadow the good deeds Transformation Church does for its community. One such good deed happened in 2021 during a service highlighting survivors of the Tusla Race Massacre. Todd and Transformation Church gave more than $1 million in “reparations” for the massacre on its 100th anniversary. That figure included $600,000 for the remaining survivors of the 1921 anti-Black campaign of violence that left hundreds dead.

Series of Bestselling Books

Despite his SEO savvy and alluring preaching style, what seems to have really made Todd’s star rise is a sermon series on relationships he preached in 2016. Todd’s “Relationship Goals” sermons have amassed nearly 30 million views on YouTube. The series eventually inspired Todd to write the book Relationship Goals: How to Win at Dating, Marriage, and Sex. The 2020 book became a #1 New York Times bestseller. It remains a popular pick among readers looking for Christian marriage books.

Todd’s second book, Crazy Faith: It’s Only Crazy Until It Happens, also became a bestseller, as did his newest book, Damaged but Not Destroyed: From Trauma to Triumph.

Church Growth

The precise number of worshippers who attend Transformation Church in person weekly was not immediately known. But, it was reported several years ago to be at least 5,000. It is safe to say, due to the impact Todd’s leadership has had, that the numbers for members and weekly worshippers have grown. More recently, Todd hired disgraced former Hillsong Church pastor Carl Lentz. Lentz, whose NYC church once attracted 10,000 weekend worshippers, reportedly helps Transformation Church with their growth and outreach strategy.

Transformation Church was founded by Gary McIntosh in 1999 and was once located in the historically Black Greenwood District, where the 1921 massacre occurred. Under Todd’s leadership, the congregation moved to the Tulsa suburb of Bixby to worship at the massive SpiritBank Event Center. The church bought the building, sitting unused at the time, for over $10 million. Transformation Church reportedly holds a real estate portfolio worth nearly $67 million.

If things continue as they have been going for Todd, it’s safe to say his methods and style will continue to make Christianity relatable to a new generation of believers. His bestselling books, packed church, and online following are evidence of his effectiveness in reaching the masses.

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FM Editors
FM Editors
Faithfully Magazine is a fresh, bold and exciting news and culture publication that covers issues, conversations and events impacting Christian communities of color.

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