By Frank Oshanugor
The news of the sudden death of the founder and senior pastor of the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) Lagos, Prophet Temitope Joshua (T.B. Joshua) in the early hours of Sunday has continued to attract shock across a wide spectrum of Nigerians, even as many are eulogizing him for his benevolence to humanity.
Prophet Joshua whose fame in the past three decades had gone beyond the African continent for the efficacy of his prayers particularly on those with spiritual affliction, was loved by many Nigerians and foreigners for the simplicity with which he related to all manner of people.
His Christianity which found more meaning in his robust financial uplightment of the less privileged irrespective of race or religion stood him out among other gospel preachers in Nigeria. During his time, he practically demonstrated love for humanity ministering to the spiritual and financial needs of worshippers without begrudging anyone.
His magnificent building environment at the Ikotun Egbe area of Lagos over the years, has been a “Mecca” of some sort to foreigners seeking spiritual help. Many people from South Africa, Asia, Europe and elsewhere have continuously come to see Prophet Joshua for one spiritual need or the other. He was also a widely travelled evangelist whose ministration had a deeper penetration through his Emmanuel TV channel.
In Nigeria, many people in public offices have privately relied on his spiritual assistance to overcome challenges that come their way and some openly identified with him irrespective of their religious persuasion.
Since the news of his death came online on Sunday morning, a good number of Nigerians have been reacting to the death. One of them is former Aviation Minister Femi Fani-Kayode, who said the death was confirmed to him by T.B. Joshua’s daughter. He described the prophet as a good friend and brother.
OVATION publisher Dele Momodu also described Joshua as a brother while regretting the sudden death. Warri based Glitterati International magazine publisher, Mr. Jerry Okondu while speaking with SECURITY REPORTERS.com on phone said he saw the Prophet about two weeks ago during his visit to Lagos but nothing suggested the man would die soon.
Okondu however, thanked God for T.B. Joshua’s impact on the lives of many Nigerians and foreigners who came across him during his earthly ministration. The publisher posited that God may have good reason to take the life of Prophet Joshua at a time the “ovation is loudest.”. He contended that the man of God has truly and genuinely impacted lives spiritually, materially and otherwise, leaving only a few people of his true identity as a man of God. “God probably did not want T.B. Joshua to soil himself after his years of good works, hence his death” Okondu explained.
One of T.B. Joshua’s children in the Lord and Founder/General Overseer; Apostle Valentine Chukwuemeka Ogheneochuko lamented at the death, saying ‘”my father has gone.”
Many prominent Nigerians among whom are Governors Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, Yahaya Bello of Kogi States and many others have been speaking in glowing terms about the late T.B. Joshua. He was generally described as philanthropist par excellence who have touched millions of lives