*Says Covid-19 has shown large capacity buildings, large congregations not necessary
*Online churches should be the new norm
Comrade Patrick Eholor once again has offered advice to churches, pastors and members, saying there is no need for large gatherings as God hears our prayers from wherever we say it.
He says if pastors will agree, they should end torturing their members with incessant demands for tithes and offerings and focus on the work of God which is purely spiritual. He says large church spaces should be converted into factories while worship services can be done on the Internet, radio and television.
These points are captured in this interview:
Winners’ Chapel (aka Faith-Tabernacle), Ota, Ogun State, is claimed to be the World’s largest church building
With the coming of Covid-19, the 100,000 capacity churches, the ones built like stadiums and amphitheatres have all been deserted and there are calls for better Communion with God in the closet of out homes. Do you think its better to worship God at home or in large congregations?
It is written that when two or three people are gathered together, God is in their presence. Covid-19 has exposed so many pastors. The issue of building the largest auditoriums for churches we have learnt now, is not useful. If it were useful, we wouldn’t have been restrained from church with the epidemic. My advice now is that for those pastors who have over 3009 churches, and branches, they should convert all to businesses to give people gainful employment. Since the beginning of the world, people have been congregating to worship God and I have no problem with that. But because a lot of them are desperate to get their tithes and seeds, and want people be exposed to that danger, that’s where I have issues with them.
Whether you like it or not, whether you believe it or not, we have to be alive to serve God. That’s very important. Pastor Tunde Bakare has also made some statements to support this position, that God can be worshipped from our homes.
They have taken this craze to another level, and that’s why we have people like Odumeje, who like to say Liquid Metal. It’s only in Nigeria that you have people who went to school for 6 weeks or 3 months and they become doctorate degree holders, without certification. Because some of us are collectively stupid. We even call them doctor without knowing the meaning. You will even see real doctorate holders calling them doctor.
Is it possible then that Covid-19 is a sort of blessing, bringing us closer to God by forcing us to worship at home, in spirit and in truth?
What I can say is that it has awakened the people. A lot of people after Covid-19 will never go to church again but they will not depart from God. They will still love God, they still be faithful, honest, and still serve God, because everything revolves around Him. You will be foolish to say there is no God. Today I am talking because God gave me the permission to do that, as a man thinketh, so he is.
My mother used to sing a song for us to remind us of our faith. The song rendered in Benin, mean ‘whether you believe it or not, it’s your faith that will heal you, it’s a spiritual thing’.
Imagine how much Nigerians spend for tithing. 80 million Nigerians, if they were paying tithe, sowing seeds and giving their offering, it means that churches collect more money than even the Federal government. What are they doing with it? They were licensed to steal from the ignorant. That’s why people like Oritsejafor will take your aeroplane that you donated money for, to South Africa for arms deal and money laundering. Yet the CAN didn’t discipline him and he is still in the pulpit. How do I explain that to my children who are Christians?
It’s not about me. It’s about the unborn generation, the young ones. This generation is a failed one, because we are afraid to speak truth to power, but I will speak truth to power. I will at any time because he who God has blessed, no man can curse.
In the last 20 to 30 years, a lot of companies have had to minimise office space, and as a matter of fact, there are companies that don’t use physical spaces anymore but work in what they call cloud, in their phones or laptops. Are you saying that the church should minimise space and use the smallest space possible to worship God?
That’s what I would have advocated but would they but into it? It will take a lot of tithes and seeds and offerings from their reach.
But companies still make money from online business transactions
It’s difficult to cajole the churches like that because they need to sell handkerchiefs, anointing oil, bangles, banners, there are a lot of things they need to sell. These things will not be sold online, spells need to be cast, and they need to cast out that demon, they need to touch your head, they need to hit you with that ring, they need to climb that pregnant woman’s belly, they need to bring that coffin to the church and raise the dead. That is shameful, in this present age, pastors and churches are still using us.
Then, when you go to streets, you don’t see billboards that says ‘students wanted, mechanics wanted, artisans wanted, engineers wanted’. All you see is a bleaching pastor with his bleaching wife telling you miracles and buzz.
In closing this topic, listen to the word of God on this matter, pastors hate this verse. It reads “Set your tithes aside and give it to the Levites, the foreigner, the fatherless and the widow”, Deuteronomy 26, 12. Have you heard it before?
This is another one they also don’t ever preach “Fear God, food for the belly, and belly for food. Glittering beautiful cathedrals built by disobedient men of God, for our God doesn’t dwell in houses built out of the wisdom and hands of men. God shall destroy them all in the furnace of His fury on 5he last day”, 1st Corinthians, 6,13.
You earlier said that if the pastors will agree, they need to convert their church spaces into factories. Is that what you are still saying?
Yes, even before Covid-19, the western world were closing churches, converting it to factories so that they can give gainful employment to their citizens. But you can’t be holier than the pope.
But in Nigeria, they were closing factories and turning them to churches. They changed the worship to 7 Days a week. What did you forget on Sunday that you are going back to get on Monday, on Tuesday, on Wednesday, on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday? What the pastor is trying to get from you is your seed, tithes and offering so they must milk you, they must take it from you.
The most painful aspect is that, if I am attending your church and you want to build a church building, and I donated to that cause for you, I am part of it. I’d I pay a tithe, and sow a seed, and pay my offering, if you are going to use any of these money, there must be a committee set up. You must tell us in that congregation this is what you are going to use our money for. Not taking from our offering to build schools that our children cannot be able to attend.
But these pastors argue that since they are not companies, they are not liable to how they spend these monies
Well, that narrative has to change. In Rwanda, when the president saw that some people were very naive, a lot of people were given everything they earned to pastors. He had to close about 3000 churches. I am not here to antagonise or attack the real men of God. There are a few good men among them. I am talking about the mega churches who are buying aeroplanes using then for trafficking . They know themselves.
Are you saying that government should reverse the church licenses and make them to start paying taxes?
I am saying that if its possible. Am also saying that pastors should be able to show their educational certificates that made them qualified to practise. This is because a lot of people who have failed in life just go to pastoral school for six months and come out to connive with their husbands to kill their wives, or steal from your company to donate to church, You see many pastors today raping underage women. Somebody stole money from Sheraton Hotel to donate to one church and the pastor refused to release the money saying he never told him to steal, and the man ended up in jail.
If you are truly a man of God, God doesn’t accept stolen money, God is not a money doubler. So we must change the narrative. We must close churches who are not productive, we must close churches who are 419 churches, who are not responsible churches, who are preying on women and some vulnerable men. We must close them, and I am saying it without an apology.