By Lukman Olabiyi
Sunday June 13 was a day of joy for parishioners of Foursquare Gospel Church, Eleshin, Ikorodu, Lagos State. It was a day of praise and thanksgiving for the members as they danced to the soul-lifting songs rendered by the choir.
On that day, excited members celebrated the new status of the church as well as the inauguration of the District Overseer (DO), Rev. Ayoola Aluko.
The church, which was chartered on Sunday, April 24, 2011, was elevated to a full-fledged zone status on Sunday, January 17, 2016. It became a district headquarters in February this year.
Rev. Aluko, who became the District Overseer of the church at Eleshin, had served in different capacities of the church, such as Sunday School teacher, youth vice president, mission and evangelism minister, national home mission officer, and others before his latest inauguration.
National Director of Home Mission of the church, Rev. Henry Obianor, who inaugurated the new helmsman alongside the District Council members, charged them to be upright and not to rest on their oars in spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ according to the vision and mission of the church’s founder.
He urged them to see the new assignment as a reward for their hardwork in doing God’s work. He charged them to do more to take the mission to enviable heights.
Obianor implored all the district council members to give all the necessary support to their new leader in order to make the district pride of the church.
Rev Aluko, speaking after his inauguration, expressed worries over the rate of social vices despite the high number of churches in the society. But he said that the church was not relenting in making the society a better place. He noted that what was happening was some of the signs of the end time.
“Sincerely speaking, it looks like contradiction that as churches are multiplying, vices are also multiplying. When you check the scriptures very well, you will understand that these things had been spoken of, both by the prophets and our Lord Jesus Christ. They said that unrighteousness would be increasing, to the extent that at the end of the day, people would even become very wicked, despite that there is presence of church. God created man with His free will, and He is not going to take away from them what they desire.
“So, even though the church is labouring to ensure that rate of vices come down, there will still be some deceivers out there misleading people to the wrong path. But all the same, that will not stop us from continuing to do our best in winning souls for the kingdom of God,” he said.
Aluko also commented on the state of the nation, saying that for Nigeria to recover its lost glory, leaders at all levels of government need to shun all forms of deception, nepotism and corruption. He also admonished them on selflessness irrespective of the positions they occupy.
He said that the sorry state of Nigeria’s economy, security and development was as a result of selfish interest and lackadaisical attitude of leaders at all levels.
The cleric made passionate appeal to all leaders in the country including religious leaders on the need to also shun any ungodly act that would continue hinder the progress of the country.
Former pastor of the church, Pastor Benjamin Akinboye Oluwatimiro, whose family donated the land on which the church was built, expressed gratitude to God for witnessing the new height that the worship centre attained in his lifetime. He promised to continue to serve God with all his resources, even as he pledged never to relent in winning more souls for Jesus Christ.
The district council secretary, Rev. Victor Adeyemi said the council members were ready to give Aluko all the necessary support in order for him to achieve the mandate given to him by the church.
Adeyemi added that the church’s primary mandate was to win souls for Christ. He said the council was ready to comb all the nooks and crannies of Ikorodu and its environs to realise the dream.