T.B. Joshua, perhaps Nigeria’s most unconventional cleric,
posted a heart-warming story on his official Facebook Page
about an elderly lady who came to his church with an
A retired teacher named Caroline Orugude had come to The
Synagogue, Church Of All Nations (SCOAN) in Lagos,
Nigeria to share a curious testimony.
After retiring from her job in June, 2012, Caroline was
forced to wait almost two years for the gratuity that she was
supposed to receive.
“There was nothing much we could do except pray because
the pension system is so unreliable,” she narrated to the
After visiting various churches for prayer without any
visible change, she was introduced to Emmanuel TV, the
popular Christian television station broadcasting the
activities at The SCOAN, and began praying along with
Within two weeks, she received a call from the treasury,
asking her to go to Abuja to collect her pension money.
“I decided that when I got the money, I would come to The
SCOAN to appreciate the Lord,” she joyfully said. “I am
here with the small sum of 500,000 naira, to give to the
man of God and The SCOAN, as my tithe.”
It was an unexpected declaration but the response of Joshua
was equally surprising as he insisted he could not collect
“Yes, it is written in the Bible that we should pay tithe but
how can we collect tithe from widows and the aged who are
supposed to be under our care,” he questioned the
“Remember, she has stopped working. She needs our care
for the rest of her life. These are the women we should be
feeding and taking care of. She is our mother; she is my
The cleric, who is well known for his philanthropic
gestures, then announced that instead of taking Mrs.
Orugude’s tithe, he would support her with an additional
“When God calls a man or woman, what they will eat, what
they will use and everything they need for their journey
will be provided abundantly by God,” T.B. Joshua then
explained, noting the attributes of genuine ministers of
“When a minister begins to depend on tithes, you know he
is not a minister of God,” he added. “This is a message to
ministers of God all over the world.
When we collect tithes, we should know those whom we
collect them from. Don’t force anybody – it is between
them and God. Let us worship the Giver of money, not
money,” he concluded.
The post on Joshua’s Facebook page, followed by 1.5
million people, ended with a poignant question. “Where are
your elderly? Care for them and you shall reach old age.”
A video recently surfaced of Joshua refusing a $1,000
offering from a Swiss lady who received healing during his
crusade in Colombia.
Several weeks ago, he spoke scathingly of ‘money-hungry’
pastors, insisting that ministers of God should not force
members to give offerings or tithes as it was a thing of the
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