PASTOR (Mrs.) Titi Akindayomi-Adewale, one of the children of Pa Josiah Akindayomi, founder of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), has debunked insinuations that her father was a stark illiterate who could not read or write.
In a YouTube video interview conducted by Pastor Femi Ojo, an RCCG pastor based in the US, Titi said her father had beautiful writing and was not as illiterate as being suggested in some quarters, pointing out, however, that he did not have a formal education.
She said, “I saw his notes when he was alive. He was formally not learned but he was so interested in learning. Part of the Sunday school period in the church then was devoted to people who wanted to know how to write.
“All they did was to learn alphabets in Yoruba. Part of those who benefited from the programme was my mother. “They did the normal Sunday school but also had time to learn how to write. My father was reading his Bible very well. He wrote his notes. He had beautiful cursive handwriting. Unfortunately for me, I did not keep his notebook.”
‘RCCG not the first name of church’
She recalled that her father had toyed with about three different names before the Lord finally revealed the name ‘Ijo Irapada’ to him in a vision.
“I think the first name he had was Ijo Ogo Oluwa, and then Apostolic Faith of Africa and one other name I can’t recall before God finally revealed the name Ijo Irapada which is being interpreted Redeemed Christian Church of God”, the daughter said. “He wrote the name down by himself. When he got up from the revelation, he called one Pastor Ayodele to work on the name. They prepared the logo of the church later”
She revealed further that RCCG started on Ibadan Street at Ebute Meta and later moved to Oloto Street; then Willoughby Street before the church moved to Cemetery Street, all in Ebute Meta, Lagos. She recollected, “I can still recall when we were moving from Willoughby Street to Cemetery Street very well.
“It was like the children of Israel going to the promised land. I recall how we lined up to the place. As God would have it, the headquarters of the church has remained in that place till date.”
According to him, the church was growing steadily and people were coming because of the great things that the Lord was doing through her father. While regretting that she did not take cognizance of what was happening then and did not keep records, she said her father was so passionate about God that he said to them that the main legacy he wanted to bequeath to his children was the Bible.
‘Women not given notable positions’
Titi, who is the fourth of the surviving children of the late Akindayomi, said her mother was not given any notable role in the church when her father was alive.
According to her, it was Pastor Adeboye, as General Overseer of the church, who ordained her mother and his wife, Folu Adeboye, as mothers-in-Israel. Titi debunked the insinuation that men and women sat separately in RCCG then.
‘I did not plan to be a pastor’
On how she became a pastor, she said, “I was a choir member in Nigeria. I used to be in the headquarters.
“I did not plan to be a pastor. My husband was a pastor, but I was not. It was when I got to the US that a member and a mentor encouraged me into pastoring. Incidentally, I was attacked.
“Some people were insinuating that I could not do it. I was told if this person does not want it, it can’t happen. That was when I got the courage and said to myself why not. I said no, this can’t be going on. “In spite of being sidelined initially, we were embraced later.
At the end of the day, I stood my ground. The church I pastor is still standing by God’s grace. I believe they had something against me initially. To the glory of God, it’s been wonderful.
By the grace of God, I happened to be one of the first women ordained as Assistant pastor in 1991. That year I came out of the Bible college and I was ordained. The G.O said women will not go beyond AP because of Church doctrine. I later saw that they have started ordaining women as full pastors. I got ordained as a full pastor after so many years.”
On her father, Pa Akindayomi who died November 2, 1980, she said she had started a foundation to immortalize him, stating that she was shocked to find out that some top pastors of the RCCG didn’t even know her father was the founder of the church.
“Josiah Akindayomi Foundation was founded to immortalize my father. “History will not forgive me if the name dies. A lot of people don’t know the founder of the church.
“I know a lot of top pastors who don’t know Akindayomi as the founder. The foundation is to bring to the limelight what the man stood for when he was alive.”