The church advertises itself as one committed to wiping tears. And, in the past two years, Joy Cometh Ministries has removed tears from the faces of thousands, spreading joy through its numerous evangelistic and humanitarian programmes.
Recently, the ministry once again walked a similar path, as a group within the church brought smiles to the faces of more than 1,000 widows and indigent folks in Ikorodu and environs.
The event was the first anniversary of the Club Five Loaves, the charity arm of the church, during which the food bank of the church was inaugurated. The food bank, according to the organisers, was established to feed the poor in the community, empower widows and turn around lives in the area.
The event was held at the headquarters of the church in Ebute, Ikorodu, Lagos. For the widows, it was a big relief.
Many of them with little expectations for the Yuletide and New Year festivities went home with bags of rice, live chickens, vegetable oil, packs of noodles, salt, clothes and thousands of naira.
Founder and senior pastor of Joy Cometh Ministries, Pastor Olaitan Aromolaran, said the church was giving back to society because God had been performing wonders in the ministry since its establishment in November 2016.
“What God is doing in the church now is quite amazing. It is beyond the expectation of all of us. Club Five Loaves is a year old today, and we have, through His grace, combed several communities. We don’t just invite people to the church, we go out to meet them in their various localities, preach the gospel to them and empower them to be independent.
So far, it has been a huge success feeding the poor and the hungry. Every month, we usually give financial assistance to petty traders and small-scale business owners for them to boost their trade and businesses. The result has been wonderful,” he said.
Aromolaran stated that the huge success recorded by the Joy Cometh Ministries during the just-concluded Night of 365 Hallelujahs at the Ikorodu Town Hall, where thousands of worshippers gathered on December 7, was a reflection of God’s abounding grace on the ministry.
“Let me emphasise the fact that going to meet the poor in their locations and feeding them and their families has never been our problem. The truth is: wherever the assignment is, there is always a special grace and power to fulfil it. It is the grace we enjoy from God. For us to be counted worthy to fulfil the purpose in the lives of the poor and the widows is the height of fulfilment. It is a big opportunity for us to reach out to the needy. You can see the relief on their faces.
“In the real sense of it, I do advise them not to lose hope. None of them should lose hope. It has always been an inspiration to me when God fulfils His purpose in the lives of these people who have little or no hope. That is why I say they should keep on, hold on to God tenaciously and continue to do good. The more God enlarges us, the more we will continue to share and distribute wealth to the people at the grassroots and making them happy,” Aromolaran said.
President of Club Five Loaves, Mr. Olakunle Sopade, said the club has, since inception in December last year, trained at least 1,000 people in various trades, including catering, hairdressing, arts and crafts, detergent and soap-making, and tailoring.
“In the last one year, we have provided loan facilities and start-up capital for about 1,000 people engaging in small-scale businesses. And the feedback is awesome. Members of the club contribute voluntarily and the little we contribute on a monthly basis goes a long way in alleviating the sufferings of the poor and needy. As a club under the Joy Cometh Ministries, we are growing from strength to strength. We started initially with 195 members, but now we have over 400 members and our plan is to extend the frontiers of the club, making it a club of international repute,” he said.
Secretary of the club, Mrs. Anne Ogundare, said the initiative was that of Pastor Aromolaran.
“We go out to evangelise and preach the gospel to people across the state. In the process of winning souls for Christ, we feed the hungry and empower widows. Every month, we make provisions for at least 500 people. We distribute food to people each time we go out to evangelise.
Since 2017, it has been a wonderful experience impacting the lives of the poor and the needy,” she said. One of the beneficiaries, Mrs. Adesola Oyinloye, a widow, lauded the leadership of the church. She said the gifts and the numerous empowerment programmes of the church would reduce the suffering of indigent people, especially widows, and set them on the path to a new life.
A prominent member of the church, Mr. Rotimi Essential Aromolaran, explained that Christians and Muslims have been benefitting from the initiative.
“It cuts across religions and denominations. Many of the widows and other beneficiaries of this programme are not even members of Joy Cometh Ministries. Many of them come from other churches. But that does not matter. Jesus came for everyone, so we don’t discriminate.
That is why you see the ministry expanding in grace within and outside Ikorodu,” said the United States-trained security consultant.