HAVE FAITH IN GOD

Tb Joshua, SCOAN Prophet

Have Faith in God

If we have faith in God, we should not just believe in Him when we encounter extraordinary events and face impossible tasks or absolute perils. Not only should we know God as our sovereign, supreme Lord but we should know Him like children know their fathers. We are constantly under His care and protection. The powers of the Heavens are behind us and backing us up so that in all things we can overcome through the Divine power.

We speak about faith and say man ought to have faith in God but how should one have faith? We have faith in God through the daily things around us. What is faith? Faith is a heart that believes in God through ordinary circumstances. If we examine our daily lives, we will find out how much faith we have. Empty profession of faith will not help us at all. Faith is manifested in the small things in our daily lives. The Bible is full of promises for every matter. As long as we have faith, God will work for us.

FAITH IS NOT A FEELING!

Faith, Tb Joshua, Gods word

Faith is not a Feeling

People sometimes base their spiritual experiences on feelings and emotions. We cannot understand God by feeling but by faith. You are not saved just because you feel saved. You are saved because you put your faith in God’s Word. The only thing that is stable is God’s Word. God’s Word is the same yesterday, today and forever. So, for your relationship with God to be stable, it must be based on something with more stability than feelings.

Feelings, we know, change when circumstances change. We live by faith not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). That is, we live by faith when we recognise our union with Christ in the spirit. In other words, when we recognise that we are related to or connected with Christ by His Spirit. Whereas, we live by sight when we give attention to the physical body, which is temporary. While faith is based on the happiness of the future state, which God has prepared – an everlasting mansion (John 14:2). – TB Joshua Ministry

DAY OF DUMBFOUNDING MIRACLES AS T.B. JOSHUA’S EMMANUEL TV HOLDS EXPLOSIVE CRUSADE IN SHEFFIELD, U.K.

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WORLD ACCLAIMED PROPHET T.B. JOSHUA AND INSPIRATION BEHIND
THE EMMANUEL TV REVIVAL IN SHEFFIELD, UK

By Sola Ojewusi

Prophet T.B. Joshua, founder and Senior Prophet of the Synagogue Church of All Nations, SCOAN, is immensely popular in his homeland, Nigeria and the rest of Africa. Despite this popularity, the saying that a Prophet is never fully appreciated in his own homeland rings true in the rather sad and unfathomable way in which the man’s immense contributions, especially religious and charity works are hardly honoured in Africa. But going by the spate of foreign spiritual engagements that have flooded his ministry over the years, especially in these turbulent times, one could easily say that what has not been duly given to Joshua at home is being showered on him in foreign lands. Recent succession of amazing and hugely successful international crusades and revivals programmes coming the way of the Man of God proves this.

On June 1, 2019 the much anticipated crusade in the United Kingdom finally held and from the vibe that followed the event and its live telecast on the Emmanuel TV channel around the world, the pre-crusade hype that this would be a high-profile revival programme did not disappoint. Our correspondent learned that this revival event which was held due to popular demand and as a culmination of years of yearnings from the UK for more tastes of the T.B. Joshua spiritual gifts was a huge success.

mrs ajkaiye tb joshua uk

BEFORE AND AFTER PICTURES OF MRS. AJAKAIYE WHO WAS HEALED AT THE SHEFFIELD REVIVAL PROGRAMME

HOW THE CITY OF SHEFFIELD, U.K. WAS SET AGOG FOR HOURS

Over the years, news emanating from the UK, with a wide cosmopolitan populace, indicate that millions of UK residents have been yearning for revivals in the British Isles and nearby territories. Well, that hunger was great satiated on June 1 this year when the Emmanuel TV Crusade train under the immanent inspiration of Prophet T.B. Joshua finally berthed in Sheffield. Information from national and international news channels indicate that the meticulous and prayerful preparations finally paid off as the FlyDSA ARENA in Sheffield, UK, VENUE OF THE CRUSADE was filled to the brim. The International Evangelist and Christian Miracle Worker, Prophet T.B. Joshua, actually sent a high-powered team to the UK for a Grand Revival, the kind of which the UK had never witnessed and, despite the unavoidable absence of the Man of God himself, the great works of miracle that took place at the event through the ministrations of Joshua’s disciples, Evangelists Chris, Racine and Yinka would reverberate for years to come. Tagged “The Emmanuel TV UK Revival”, reports from across Europe indicate that this event, days after it ended, remains the top buzz among UK residents.

The revival programme in Sheffield actually gave greater stimulus to the growing reputation of T.B Joshua in the UK since the Anointing Water revolution of East London in 2013. Information available to our Correspondent revealed that TB Joshua created a storm of spiritual revival in the UK in that year in the wake of his Anointing Water Revival programme that took place at the Troxy Theatre in East London on Sunday, November 10, 2013. During that event, according to our source, not less than 10,000 worshippers witnessed the T.B. Joshua phenomenon. Joining their counterparts from all over the United Kingdom were pilgrims from countries like Switzerland, Sweden, Germany, France, Belgium, United Arab Emirates, India, Romania, Slovakia, Canada, Austria, Brunei, Australia and Holland. And such was the vastness of the crowd that the line of worshippers trying to gain entry into the venue extended for over a kilometre around and beyond the adjoining streets of The Troxy.

Since these Morning Water Revivals, checks indicate, thousands had travelled to the Lagos, Nigeria headquarters of the SCOAN while millions more who are unable to travel had been looking forward to T.B. Joshua’s coming. Conventional wisdom was that if the events at the Troxy in 2013 and a follow-up Morning Water Revival at the New Bingley Hall, Birmingham and at the University of West London, Brentford a bit later could garner such overwhelming attendances, despite the fact that T.B. Joshua was not physically in attendance, his revival at the Sheffield Revival would surely attract an even more stupendous gathering of worshippers. And, surely, the Sheffield event did not disappoint. It turned out a classic example of the good old days of true Christian revival since the era of the Christ when astonishing, living miracles were performed.

The city of Sheffield had never seen such outpouring of astounding works of miracle. As the event took off without the physical presence of Prophet T.B. Joshua himself, some form of scepticism was natural, because the tendency was for some to think that, without the Man of God himself, miracles would be far and few between. However, what many would gratefully live to see that day was the reassuring fact that the Man of God has so imparted his disciples with the anointing that, present or not, the work of redemption must go on.

One of the amazing miracles of June 1 was that of Gemma Morilla whose healing proved that T.B. Joshua’s anointing transcends the four walls of any place where he is physically present; it radiates to any place in the world where air is breathed.

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GEMMA MORILLA BEFORE AND AFTER HER HEALING IN SHEFFIELD

Gemma Morilla, a member of the National Association for the Blind in Spain, who had always relied on a guide dog to move around daily having been legally blind since the tender age of two due to a devastating ailment would soon discover this delightful truth. Having suffered less than 10% vision, for 35 years, Gemma could not in her wildest imagination know that the Sheffield crusade would put a stop to her suffering. At the Emmanuel TV UK Revival in Sheffield everything changed for Gemma after receiving a divine touch that brought her to full sight!

Gemma was not the lone beneficiary of this Christian redemption. Lorena, described as a traumatised terrorist attack survivor also received a dumbfounding miracle!!!
A survivor of the 11th March 2004 co-ordinated terrorist attack against four commuter trains in Madrid which killed 193 people and injured almost 2,000, Gemma suffered both physically and psychologically, including loss of earing in one ear, dependence on a wheelchair for mobility, shattered life, splintered mind and rheumatoid arthritis. According to Lorena at the event in Sheffield, Lorena: “I lost my memory, suffered urinary incontinence and became so depressed. I saw no reason to live.”  Lorena’s experience led her to contemplate suicide on many occasions but when she attended the Emmanuel TV UK Revival along with her Pastor, Andres Espinoza, travelling from Spain to Sheffield in search of a miracle, her dream came true after the SCOAN Minister of God, Racine, prayed for her. Like a dream, fifteen years of pain, hurt and trauma became a thing of the past! She abandoned her wheel chair and walked! Also, her left ear that was damaged by the blast yield of the bomb in Madrid was restored to full health along with the incessant fear that had gripped her since the terrorist attack.tb joshua uk crusade

There were many more miracles, including that of Pastor Mazzola Salvador, an Italy-based Argentinian whose nagging hernia suddenly disappeared;  Priscilla Morales, Spain-based Colombian whose deteriorating hip bones were restored to sound health; Mr. Kofi Ababio who was healed of Spondylosis of the spine; Mrs. Clara Ajakaiye, a US-based Nigerian Bank Manager whose arthritis-ridden knees were cured and Mr. Lee Gordon, the Malaysian whose depression and suicidal tendencies vanished at the crusade.

The June 1 event in Sheffield might have come and gone, the effects of the great miracles would surely reverberate in that city and around the world for a long time to come.

AND NAZARETH CAN’T WAIT

Having seen a taste of what could happen in a T.B. Joshua crusade in Sheffield, the nation of Israel is already in great anticipation. In approximately three weeks to the Revival in Sheffield, the T.B. Joshua train of evangelism would again descend on the city of Nazareth, ancient hometown of Jesus Christ in the State of Israel. What is even more exciting to the Israelis and other people around the world planning to be in Nazareth is the fact that, unlike Sheffield, T.B. Joshua would be physically present.

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FLIER OF THE NAZARETH, ISRAEL REVIVAL PROGRAMME

Indications that something grand would soon take place in Israel began in Mid-2017 when T.B Joshua was invited to Israel by Israel-based Zaka, one of the world’s most prestigious charity organizations, in recognition of the Nigerian prophet’s humanitarian activities. During that visit, TB Joshua met with various dignitaries including the Mayor of Nazareth, Ali Salam, and the Minister of Communications, MK Ayoob Kara. During that meeting, we reliably gathered, the popular clergyman was pleaded with by the Mayor to soon organize an international crusade in Nazareth, Israel. “What a blessing meeting with you, Prophet T.B. Joshua,” Mayor Ali Salaam said then. “We can’t wait to have you for a revival in Nazareth. We are ready.”

At another meeting with T.B. Joshua, the Israeli Minister of Communications, Mr. MK Ayoob Kara who represented the government was effusive in his welcome of the world-acclaimed televangelist. “This is my friend,” enthused Mr. Kara in his welcome address. “Welcome, Prophet T.B. Joshua.”

The high profile meetings and the immense reputation of the Man of God, our correspondent learnt, prepared the ground for the explosive revival that has been scheduled to hold in Nazareth between 23rd and 24th of June 2019. Tagged “MEET T.B. JOSHUA IN NAZARETH, ISRAEL”, the revival meeting, at Nazareth’s Amphitheatre of Mount Precipice would afford congregants the very unique opportunity of “Experiencing the Footprints of Jesus Christ” under the guidance of the internationally celebrated Prophet of God.

And like in the UK, feelers from the Middle East show that that region is agog with the good news of the anticipated explosive revival in the land of Jesus’ birth. Another unique touch to this revival is that it would be the first time such high-profile revival would be held by a Nigerian prophet, especially in the native land of The Christ.

June is surely a month of great blessings for the people of the UK and Israel, Jesus’ native land.

SCOAN Headquater Lagos Nigeria

PICTURE OF THE SCOAN WORLD HEADQUARTERS IN LAGOS, NIGERIA

*PICTURES COURTESY OF EMMANUEL TV.

CHOOSE YOUR FRIENDS WITH CARE

CHOOSE YOUR FRIENDS WITH CARE

Do not be deceived. There are four categories of people in our life and these are:

People that add to our lives by helping our faith to grow and bring us closer to God thereby.
People that subtract from our lives by pulling us out of faith and removing our minds from the things of God.
People that divide our lives by coming around you as parasites only to divert or derail our focus from God.
People that multiply our lives by helping us to water the seed in your life for your future abundance.

Each relationship you have will either affect you positively or negatively.

Proverbs 13:20 says it all; ‘Keep company with the wise and you will become wise. If you make friends with stupid people you will be destroyed’.

MY ‘ESPIONAGE’ INTO THE SYNAGOGUE CHURCH OF ALL NATIONS (PART TWO)

This is the continuation of “MY ‘ESPIONAGE’ INTO THE SYNAGOGUE CHURCH OF ALL NATIONS (Part One)

Thereafter, on Sunday 9th March, 2014. I left my hotel room early to the church complex (6:00a.m.).  As usual, I witnessed a great number of people already marching into the auditorium led by the ushers. I had reminisced of my church’s Faith Tabernacle of the Living Faith Church, Canaan land, Ota in Ogun State, Nigeria. The SCOAN Sunday live service was awesome; soul inspiring spiritual praises and worship songs includes diverse testimonies and healings, breakthroughs in different facets by the application of the anointing water and stickers and violent prayers by the congregation in symbiotic responds with the SCOAN President T B Joshua.

However, it didn’t occur to me that my spy mission into the SCOAN would have been my last day on this planet, ignorant of the fact that Sunday March 11th 2014, the members of the dreadful northern Boko Haram Sect, had decided to unleash their malicious attack against the SCOAN President and brethren, an attack with obvious detrimental effect on Christians worshiping in the sanctuary of God. This is a similar incident that occurred to one of the branches of my church in Bauchi State, about 12km (7miles) from the State Capital, left 21 dead and about 45 brethren injured, so sympathetic and tragic indeed.

Although, contrary to this inimical act of the aforementioned Sect, which they have masterminded to bomb the SCOAN and brethren including the SCOAN President, T B Joshua, but his prayers that afternoon in the course of the service was vehemently hot, filled with Holy Ghost Fire. Unbelievable! The prayers of the SCOAN President inside the church auditorium threw the Boko Haram Sect members into jeopardy, an impromptu perplexing erupted amongst (5) of the gang members whose mission became unaccomplished, the first of its kind according to the live confession of one the Sect members who ran into the congregation for live confession and refuge, this I personally witnessed. He disclosed his name as Mustapha, claimed been part of the numerous insurgencies carried out by the Sect, but this was a total failure he confessed that the SCOAN President’s prayer was filled with fire which threw them into confusion and they ran helter skelter from the restaurant where they were eating prior to execute their unholy attack against the SCOAN. Mustapha, confessed that the fire became more sensational on them via; the Emmanuel TV channel in the restaurant, this he could not withstand any longer, therefore he decided to come and plead to the SCOAN President, and the rest of his accomplice their whereabouts, quite unknown to him.

Furthermore, he confessed how they drank some concussion in order to intensify their power and maximized fortification to successfully unleash their wicked scheme without pity.

imageOn the whole, I must affirm that my espionage into the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) was quite awesome and an absolute contradiction of my initial concept about the SCOAN. More so, the  generalized ironic philosophy and the ‘wide held critics/notions’ of the church been satanic, I can strongly concur to be a blatant and falsified inference, a negative proposition held with a popular view to discredit T B Joshua and his ministry. One cannot imagine the power of God without having an encounter with Him. God still uses any medium to reach His people. In the (Acts of the Apostles, 19:11) Paul’s handkerchief as an ‘apron’ to heal the sick, even shadows. Water was transformed into wine, (2) two fishes and (5) five loaves of bread to feed about 5,000 people. Based on my findings, may I please reiterate that, the SCOAN President, T B Joshua no doubts is one of the prophets of our time, been used by God to reach this present generation.

Thus, I can’t imagine his dispositions towards the less privilege in our society, I mean this cannot be quantified in an obvious stratified and capitalist society we find ourselves, a society where input yields into the desired output, the word ‘charity’ has totally gone into oblivion. Emphatically, T B Joshua’s sermons and teachings are very precise, edifying and soul lifting. I can gladly deduce that his teachings on ‘Love dominates and captivates the minds’ of many, this exemplifies the teachings of Christ in the ‘’Golden Rule’’. T B Joshua is filled with the power of God; one cannot imagine the Boko Haram’s Sect inability to unleash their negative vices against the SCOAN. What could have restricted this attack? This still puzzles me. Could this not be the ‘amazing grace and awesome power of God’ in action? This is a dreaded Sect with deliberate intentions from the pit of hell to antagonize the finished work of our lord Jesus Christ, a foe to the entire Christian Faith, of course being responsible for the numerous fatalistic explosions to our Christian Faith. A Sect not minding the consequences that its actions brings upon our nation in the international scene, not considering the innocent souls been wasted, I would have gone into early eternity prior to our creator’s call. God’s power at work using the SCOAN General overseer T.B. Joshua mightily, his prophecies are real and divine. I can discern him having ‘amiable charisma’ that seems beyond that of a mere human being. Inspiring testimonies of the anointing water and sticker – To the Glory of God I was opportune to get the anointing water, also affirmed to the circumstances for marital challenges in my linage during the Saturday’s prophetic service I attended. At this point I begin to reaffirm to the fact that the broad way leads to destruction, the narrow way is life, the fact that salvation is a personal race.

MY ‘ESPIONAGE’ INTO THE SYNAGOGUE CHURCH OF ALL NATIONS (PART ONE)

This article was sent to us by one of our readers, a one-time skeptic on the happenings in Scoan we deem it fit to publish it:

Like the story of doubting Thomas, in respect to the numerous testimonies I have watched on Emmanuel.tv, and to actually source for the genuineness, I mean the validity of such healings, deliverances, breaking of ancestral altars, praying for the pregnant women under labor or that are experiencing delayed pregnancy, that is, overdue labor as a result of fibroid and the praying against cesarean session (C.S) and other forms of anomaly prone to women during child birth.

As a born again emphatically, rooted in the Living Faith Church a.k.a “Winners Chapel” (the biggest church in Africa). My doubts are the manner of healing and deliverance, the sheer number of testimonies erupting from the T.B Joshua’s Emmanuel.tv channel and many ‘far and wide’ rumors about SCOAN however, I deem it imperative to source for the authenticity of the aforementioned miracles. Its source and legitimacy became a driving force for me; I developed a skeptic perception against the SCOAN President and the followers of his Ministry’s doctrines. Won’t any world renowned credible organization stand up to scrutinize the alien activities of SCOAN?  to at least put my mind to rest.

More so, the usual deliverance approach and methodology they employ in the church on weekly basis via; the Scoan prayer line/emergency session, all these I presumed were stage-managed between the SCOAN General overseer/ president, T.B. Joshua and his cohorts in order to  initiate or indoctrinate innocent Christians and perhaps the entire Christendom into their strange practices which I tagged as ‘deceptive tendencies’ exaggerated in order to win souls through their drama, deliberately portrayed on the media in the name of salvation, viz; healing, deliverance and reconciliation of broken homes and marriages and so on, which the ministry strongly upholds to it tenets.

Quite captivating enough, the last straw that broke the camel’s back leading to my visit to the SCOAN was the healing of a Pastor, whom I vividly recognized running a degree programme at the University of Port Harcourt – Rivers State, Nigeria. Pastor Mark Pepple. He hails from the same ‘clan’ with me– Bonny Island in Rivers State, Nigeria. This Pastor was struck with a sudden mental disorder (insane) sometime middle last year, during a programme he had at his church’s headquarters at Abuja – Nigeria, a predicament his church could not cope with having engaged in numerous deliverance, series of fasting and prayers for about six months, including his general overseer there in Abuja, all efforts were in futility.

Therefore, in agreement between the church headquarters and General Overseer and the ill pastor’s biological father, he was booked for the SCOAN emergency prayer line session online. Weeks later, they were invited. This I confirmed from the ill pastor’s father whom I knew very well. I actually watched the deliverance clips sometime in November 2013; on a Sunday evening while I was having my dinner after church, to my amazement this sick pastor whom I recognized very well was healed in the name of Jesus Christ by the SCOAN president, T.B Joshua within few seconds, all I could hear was “you demon I command you out in the mighty name of Jesus’’ and sanity was restored instantly, the chains that he was bounded with were unlocked by his biological father, his talking in abstract ceased, sanity was restored, he recognized his biological father and co-pastors who brought him to the Scoan, certainly unknown to him during his incapacitation (mentally). This I watched in my sitting room stricken with absolute amazement. I deliberately had to travel to visit this family some weeks after the footage I watched via; the Emmanuel TV, I engaged on mutual discussion with the delivered pastor and our discussions were quite progressive, he even disclosed his preparation towards his project topics at the University of Port Harcourt.

However, as the doubting Thomas, I made up my mind to personally visit the Scoan for surveillance, I applied for 10 days leave at my place of work, this request was granted by my boss some weeks later, having received my previous month’s wages, I left Bonny Island for Port Harcourt on the 4th of march 2014, then a day after on the 5th of march, was my first journey to the Synagogue Church Of All Nations. It was so hectic; I was confronted with the present petrol challenges, long queues at the petrol filling stations and the terrible traffic situation in Lagos caused delays in my journey; this can be commonly interpreted as driving “bumper to bumper” and choked in a bus at a high temperature climate, it was indeed an uneasy trip anyway, until I alighted at a popular bus park known as “CELE BUS PARK” then boarded an intra-commuter to the SCOAN at Ikotun Egbe, Lagos. When I finally arrived at the SCOAN, I was just in my own world because my visit was uninvited, I never booked online visit, this I found contrary to the standards of the SCOAN, and I deliberately resorted not to conform to its standards anyway, with ulterior motives, in order not to be trapped by their strategies.

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Because, I was on a spy mission and this is the reason why I decided to embark on the journey prior to the weekend in order to monitor the mysteries behind these unusual miracles. I to took a critical survey of the activities especially on how the prayer line is been conducted.

Contrary to my initial presumptions and curiosities was the aftermath anyway. I carefully monitored the emergency session, the influx of foreign immigrants across the length and breadth of the globe, the authentication of medical reports from non-private hospitals, and I was disqualified in this rigorous process despite my claims of illness because I don’t have any substantial evidence. In fact, it was a thorough screening exercise to prove the authentication of the medical claims brought by the patients requesting prayer at the SCOAN emergency/prayer line. More astonishingly, I even saw people with ‘HIV/AIDS positive 1\2’ medical reports. Although, I decided to attend the screening earlier i.e. about 2 hours prior to screening (6:00a.m) prompt, rather (8:00a.m) in order to satisfy my doubts if it is truly stage-managed, but I didn’t discover anything fishy anyway, all the people who were healed at the emergency, I personally witnessed their screening and entrance.

Thus, in the course of the last service tagged Prophetic service, the President of the SCOAN went amidst the thick congregation within the auditorium and the overflow revealing prophecies to the brethren chronologically seated, about their immediate confronting predicaments, including the foreign visitors who all confirmed his prophecies to them to be true. I even can’t imagine the military officers all in uniforms, seated amongst the congregation also confirmed his word to them to be true, a cross section of the Nigerian Police Force, Army, Navy, all seated in spite of their Ranks clearly distinguished. Short sermon was preached, healings and prayers were led in the name of Jesus Christ.

To be continue ………

PROPHET T.B JOSHUA RUNS A NATION IN A COUNTRY

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Amazed. Amazed. Pastor Temitope Balogun Joshua amazed me. I was part of a delegation that visited him two days into the new year, on the platform of the human rights community. Our mission was to find out more about the six layer building that collapsed with upsetting death toll. Many of us on the delegation were fuming prior, but had a completely different impression at the end of the encounter.

We were seated in a glistering restaurant located downstairs. Several visitors, like the rhythmical movement. of a millipede, strolled gently into the restaurant where they had their breakfast and then left. We spent the time watching his Emmanuel TV said to be available in close to 100 countries. I had taken time to walk through the huge estate, soaked in some angelic aura. Thousands of people milled around; whites, Asians, and many more whose red colours made it difficult to place their ancestral homesteads. I saw a completely different community, far away from the Nigerian rot: electricity supply was 24/7, residents were generally calm, cool and collected, not with the usually hasty and stiff-neck idiosyncrasies of the average Nigerian.

A white man that looked like his personal assistance came to usher us into the living room; simple, immaculate setting. On the wall were framed pictures of several world leaders that had either visited him or had invited him into their country. At least, I saw him with the step mother of the President of the United States, Barrack Obama. One of Africa’s most powerful Kings, Goodwill Zwelithini, was also there. Years back, I had met the daughter of the Zulu King of South Africa. She told me she had epilepsy. She would be caught by the bug, almost every time during colossal, ceremonial events where she was to play a key role. She had visited so many countries in the world and met the best neuro- surgeons without success. She visited the church, and according to her, she was healed. There was also the picture of Pascal Lissouba, the former President of Congo amongst many other world leaders.

We were all waiting, speaking in low tones, perhaps , to meet the defined aura of some spiritual holiness and order. He walks into the living room in T-shirt on short nicker. He looks young, feminine and his eyes are like little comets. He has a piercing look. If he had not been a clergy, maybe, I thought in the realm of my cobweb of hallucinating imaginations, he probably could have been a farmer, or a diligent carpenter, if he had remained in his Arigidi homestead in Ondo State.

He has the look of an ordinary man, but as he walks into the room, some sort of extraordinary spirit in him caste in the space like a silhouette. As he opens his lips to reveal a set of what looked like milk teeth, in a charming smile, more like a reflex action, we all stand up to salute him.

In the recent past, I did not envy the so called men of God. I grew up as an Anglican. Later in life I became an atheist, having studied maxism, which places materialism at the center of human relations. It was not until after attending the bigger University of life and the tribulations thereof, that I sought a route back into the invisible creator of man, of plants, of animals, of the stars, of the creeping and flying things. So, for a long time, I saw religion as the opium of the masses, a set of people exploiting the gullibility of the poor, malnourished masses. A visit to the Synagogue Church of All Nations has now even rekindled some sort of conundrum.

He chooses his words, carefully. “I do not see myself as special. I’m just a man of God,” he says. He waits to see if you wanted to puncture him. On the collapsed building, Pastor Joshua insists the church was bombed. His logic is premised on the mystery plane that hovered around the building for some minutes before the big bang. What is shocking remains the fact that till date, neither the Federal Government nor the Federal Civil Aviation Authority, (FCCA) has come out to unravel the mystery plane. Who owns the plane? What was the mission of the plane? Where did the plane come from? Why should Nigeria allow this underlining dilemma to be swept under the carpet? We went on an inspection of the collapsed building. The sight is gory. Worst still, the FG has refused to make public the report of its findings. However, apart from the issue of the collapsed building, I was personally touched by the economic stories of the church. I’m not a member of the church. I do not intend to be a member, but I’m simply fascinated by the living stories built around the activities of the church, little wonder it appears the church is the biggest tourist attraction in Nigeria today. Though the purpose of our visit was on the collapsed building, we were enthralled by the humanitarian sector of the church’s multi-faceted fiefdom. I took time to investigate this inspiring enterprise.

One of the most intriguing is the monument of charity he has built in Nigeria and across the world. I watched and I was amazed at the effectiveness of his kingdom: the neon lights, in thousands and none is faulty; the orderliness of the people; the street lights and the effectiveness of his in-house economy. Our guide revealed storming stories of affection flowing from the church. Perhaps Pastor Joshua was the only African clergy that contributed immensely to the revival of afflicted souls after the earthquake that hit Haiti, killing many, and submerging hundreds of houses including the Presidential palace. The death toll was 230,000. The world held its breath in awe. Two cargo planes were chartered by Pastor Joshua. The planes flew from the United States to Haiti. They landed on a UN airstrip in Cap Haitien, northern Haiti just ten days after the tragic disaster. In history, most blacks in Haiti are originally from West Africa, mainly Nigeria. Nothing could have drawn this nostalgia than the news that a man from Nigeria flew in two cargo of planes filled with relief materials, bringing succor to the afflicted and putting an end to anguish, gnashing of teeth and mourning. Apart, he assembled medical doctors, nurses, engineers, pilots and evangelists spanning three continents to assist Haiti. They took a 10-seater plane from Ft Lauderdale to Cap Haitien. He also set up his team with relief clinic in Arcahaie, a fishing and farming town of roughly 150,000 locals. He had visited Surabaya in Indonesia where he addressed hundreds of poor people. He fed them and doled out hot meals of Kentucky Fried Chicken and money to them. He also gave 10,000 dollars to the Hana Ananda centre where the poor and the vulnerable shelter. He visited the poor in Colorado, US and fed thousands of people. He had discovered the homeless camp at the banks of the Colorado river with the welcoming inscription: “Cold, Hungry and Homeless, Anything helps.” From the account given to me, the charity covers about 50 countries and over 10 million families around the world. For the communities in the US, he was the first person in the world to have spent such a huge amount on the poor community in a country rated as one of the world’s richest.

A Muslim P.h.d student from Asia who was on a research visit to the center told me her findings indicated that Pastor Joshua provides for the needs of an average of 1 million people daily all over the world. “I’m here as a Ph.d student. I’m doing a research on modern religion and poverty alleviation. My findings indicate that Mr Joshua runs the biggest and most selfless charity in the. world,” he told me. I saw the physically challenged. I saw the blind. I saw widows. I saw thousands of students, Muslims, Christians and freethinkers alike going home with goodies on their shoulders. I saw armed and defenseless people alike, I saw the have-nots in thousands, during the new year festivity.

One of the most interesting aspects is his programme aimed at reviving armed robbers, commercial sex workers and the dregs in the society. “I was a hardened criminal. I used to kill. In fact, I came to this church, I was revived through preaching. I was given money to go and start a new life. I’m now a business man and will never go back to criminal activities again. I have been doing my business now for 10 years”, Andero, from Oyo state told me. Marvis, a former informant to armed robbers, one of which was his boyfriend, after a period of reformation; she was given 200,000 to start a new life with her husband, who was also rehabilitated.

“I have a list of 300 armed robbers rehabilitated this year alone,’ the Asian student told me, adding that she had verified all of them, including checking out with the police and discovered that it was real. There was a particular armed robber who attended the church with a gun in his pocket. He became one of the people to be rehabilitated in an extensive programme that has psycho-counselors on board. The numbers of beneficiaries in the education sector who obtain scholarship is countless, spreading across all the states of the federation and running through all ethnic groups without discrimination. I met many of his care givers, whose responsibility is to move from one home to the other, attending to the elderly and the sick, giving to them medicine and food. His community development programme is unparalleled. He runs a football club referred to as My People Football Club where hundreds of talents are frequently discovered. This is apart from a tourist haven that has been built at the church’s starting point, located in a swamp which has now been turned into a global magnet, drawing an average of 2 million people to Nigeria yearly. I now recollect. On my visit to Costa Rica, I was at first perturbed by the gale of revolting stories of drug, violence and corruption pinned on Nigeria by many. I had a similar experience during my visit to many countries including Thailand and Paragua and the United States. My consolation only came from the other side of the story when many who had visited the Synagogue Church began to talk about Nigerian in glowing terms.

Though the Church seems to have brought grandeur and honour to Nigeria, the country does not seem to appreciate this. One source told me that during Chief Olusegun Obasanjo’s reign, instructions were given to TV stations to block out Pastor Joshua’s programmes prompting him to start the Emmanuel TV that now features in several countries all over the world. Yet, the roads leading to this great enterprise that has drawn global attention remain an eyesore. The government has definitely failed in seeing the golden offer of uplifting a crestfallen nation offered through the demagogue of the Synagogue spirituality and political economy. For me, from the economic and cultural perspective, let us even leave out spirituality, the Synagogue Church has become a fortune of tourism, perhaps with no equal in Nigeria. It has become one of the few iconic comets that brightens Nigeria’s darkening images. Unfortunately, there seems no institutional backing. I ask myself, if millions of Nigerians can go to Mecca and Jerusalem, with keen government interests on the visitors given the great impact on the local economy, why can’t the various governments of Nigeria tap from the Synagogue metaphor and thrill?

Written by Adewale Adeoye. Mr Adeoye is CNN African Journalist of the Year Award Winner, former West African Regional Secretary of International Alliance on Indigenous and Tribal Peoples of the Tropical Forest, (IAITPTF) based in Thailand and alumni of the United Nations Institute of Training and Research, (UNITAR)