Growing up as a child, I learnt of the brutality of self-acclaimed Field Marshal Dada Idi Amin Uganda and of course the film that was to follow titled: the rise and fall of Idi Amin.
In that film, we saw how the power drunk dictator arrogantly and cunningly made the resumed Queen of England emissaries bow before him by building himself an entrance house typical of the Tiv House whose replica can be found at the Museum of Nigerian Traditional Architecture [MOTNA] in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria, just to make sure that the white man bowed to a black-man on the Africa continent, what would have been near impossible in pre-independence era.
Today, all that has changed for life, thanks to quality education and religion that brought about this un-quantifiable change.
Through video, one has seen a black ministering to a near capacity white congregation in America, [for instance Dr. K.C. Price] but one would say that is America.
Here in Nigeria, precisely in Ikotun, a suburb of Lagos State. This long or refracted bridge has collapsed, which saw a Nigerian pastor ministering to blacks and whites from all walks of life, especially those seeking miracle, healing and perfection in their lives.
Amazingly, the ‘Black Messiah’ child of God cures people of illnesses that have defiled all orthodox medication such as, AIDS sufferers and HIV positive patients, spiritual problems, cancer patients among others.
At The Synagogue Church of All Nations [SCAN], Prophet T.B. Joshua, is indeed the new sensation that every day, people from all corners besiege the Ikotun workshop “Synagogue” for one reason or the other.
The man that can easily be identified with beards around his mouth has become a potent attraction to many.
Since the news of Joshua’s work spread beyond borders, the Synagogue remains the most visited tourist attraction in Nigeria.
Many of the tourists watched the video of T.B Joshua’s miracles on international cable channels and read much about it too in magazines before coming.
It was on the principle of seeing is believing that this reporter who had spent close to 12 years in Lagos decided to visit the Synagogue for the first time, even though he passes the junction to the Church at least three times in a month: The urge to visit the Synagogue increased by day, by the hour and by minutes.
On arrival to Ikotun Bus Stop at about 9:45 am, a distance of about 1 Kilometre to the entrance of SCAN, I decided to cover on foot instead of taking a bike.
After about 15 minutes’ walk, alas, I was standing right in front of the Church, a place I had ignored for more than 4 years whenever I passed by.
Right inside the compound, I walked up to a man sitting on a stool at the left corner of the main door into the hall. “Good morning, Sir”, I said, facing another middle-aged man carrying a small signpost, which read, “First time corner here”, then the man responded “morning”. And I said to him, “I am a journalist on visit to the Church”.
He looked at me and pointed to a man at the right hand side of the entrance to the hall for me to meet him. As I crossed to meet the man, I said to the him whilst he was busy searching all hand bags of visitors entering the main hall.
“Yes can I help you?” The man asked, and I replied “yes” that I am a journalist on a visit to the Synagogue.
At that point, the man asked a lady who had just walked in to take me to one Abraham Simeon, the media relations officer of the Church.
So, the lady beckoned on me to followed her, I followed. We both crossed the large hall. She asked me to wait, went in and came out with another lady who asked me my mission and my organization among others.
Looking convinced, she politely asked me to follow her and asked me again to sit at a vantage position where I could see and hear clearly documentary of past preaching and testimonies from a 2 inches Panasonic television set hung in front of me.
Having taken a sit but still standing in front of me, she pointed to the west end of the hall, indicating the convenience.
She promised to return to me shortly and left.
It was after she left me that the thought of writing a travelogue came and I immediately started writing this piece. Suddenly, ire of calmness enveloped me and a writer’s block setting that I could not write again.
As I was joggling details in my head, I noticed that there was absolute silence in the large hall that could comfortably seat 3,000-10,000 worshipers at a time.
Suddenly, the moment we have all been waiting for! And I saw the congregation rising, which I joined without knowing why. He needs no introduction, as I spotted him walking down the roll in the church. At that time, I looked at my wristwatch and it was 12.35 pm, and a voice came on, asking us to sit down which we all obeyed.
At that point, the lady walked up to me and gave me a name to ask of after the service and she disappeared into the capacity hall.
From that point, I began to appreciate the power and presence of God’s power in Prophet T.B. Joshua’s miracles and wonders in healing the several thousand of Nigerians and foreigners that come to the Synagogue.
In view of this, as we commemorate the World Tourism Day come September 27, 2016, one of the institutions and person that we should be grateful to for projecting the name of Nigeria on the world tourism calendar through religious tourism activities is Prophet T.B Joshua and Synagogue Church of All Nations [SCOAN]; as visitors to the Church from different parts of the world would return to their countries with positive news of how safe Nigeria is and how hospitable the citizens are.
This has immensely helped in propagating image of the country world over.