President of Christ Apostolic Church world wide, Pastor Henry Ojo recently visited CAC Aremo. After the visit, media Crew of the church engaged him in a short discussion where he narrated his background and his ministerial experience.
Let’s first congratulate you on your appointment as President of Christ Apostolic Church Worldwide.
Thank you very much Who is Pastor Henry Ojo?
Pastor Henry Ojo is a humble Minister of God, brought up from a humble family and through God’s grace. God lifts him to the position he is today.
Tell us your background
I was born into a family in Oyo town, my mother happened to be a Christian, my father was a Muslim, my mother’s name is Dorcas while my father’s name is Hamzat. When we are talking about poor family, we were very poor, I could say that I was one of those who came out of poor family. After my primary six, I could be able to further to secondary school because I could not afford two shillings and six pence to obtain form for grammar school at that particular time and it took me nine years of struggle to send myself to school.
With what you passed through, how will you describe your experience as a small a boy?
What I passed through at tender age was in process. At my age, If I told you the places I had been and passed through, I believe when God wants to use a man, he will make him to pass through a process but at the end of the day, God will bring out the beauty which he has designed inside the person.
Your Dad was a Muslim, then it will not be wrong to say you were once a Muslim.
No, I was not, because my mother gave birth to me inside the church, my father was the kind that would not stop my mother from going to church, I was born in the church, grew up in the church and pastor named me, Alfa did not give me name, so I will not say I was a Muslim.
What informed your decision to go into ministry?
I never wanted to be a minister of God. I had a very big dream for myself, when God helped me to get to secondary school and I obtained my o’ level. At that particular time, I had intention to go to Yaba College of Technology and it was that time the call came, but I did not want to yield to that call. I did everything possible to struggle and run away, but as long as I ran, God ran after me until I finally submitted to the will of the Lord.
How has it been as a Pastor?
One thing that matters is that you are sure of your calling of the Lord in your life and the call becomes a personal interest to you. That assurance will drive you even
when you are going through hardship and difficulty, you don’t feel it, because something is driving you inside. As a minister, I did not start with big church. In fact, my first station was a fifteen member assembly. Despite all that hardship, I did not feel it, I felt happy doing what I was doing that time.
Is there any situation when you almost or regret being a pastor?
It has never happened. I have never had any situation like that. I faced a lot of challenges and confrontations but the fact that the call was upon me, and I knew I was doing what he designed for me i.e his divine assignments.
When you were ordained as Pastor in CAC, did you dream of becoming the Church President?
Waoh! It was not like this then. Today people easily become a pastor. During our own time, before you become a pastor, it would take many years and looking at those before you, even if anybody told me I would be district superintendent in CAC, I will never believe it because before it could get to my turn, my years must have expired, but thank be unto God.
God on his providence made me what I am today. It is marvelous and something that really surprised me.
When you heard your name as president how did you feel?
In fact, I almost fainted. I did not know it will be someone like me that would be nominated as President. When the thing came up and we were discussing how our fathers who were retiring would be replaced, though I was at the centre of the discussion. I remembered at Alasepe last year during Pastor’s Conference, I was even the one pleading that our fathers should be left to continue until the crisis is settled, but our lawyer said the case in the court might not permit us to do that and our “Baba“ could not stay beyond December 31st, 2018. I was even joking that day as the Chairman of Pastor’s Conference and convention committee that I had over laboured myself. While feeling sleepy, I just told them “You better choose whoever you want to choose, we are coming to ordain them”.
When I was invited to the meeting where they announced new officers, I did not want to attend. The former General Superintendent called me that I must come to that meeting, I asked for what made it compulsory for me to attend. I said ” Baba, you have to consider me and my distance is far. Whatever decision you make, we would accept”. But, he insisted I must come. Well, I thought may be there were some important issues they wanted to discuss and they would be needing my input. I came to Ibadan that day and in the evening, the former General Superintendent called me again to know if I was in Ibadan. He then told me to dress very well when coming to the meeting. I did not understand the statement. I even told my friend who I always stayed with anytime I was in Ibadan if we were going for fashion parade. On that day, as they were reading the names, I was even joking with people around me that I did not know they had called my name. Then I heard people saying “Stand-up”. I then asked “ Wetin I do oo?” Did I commit any offence? Then, they told me I was the President, I was so much surprised.
Throughout last year, you were involved in the re-conciliatory process to unite Christ Apostolic Church. Now, you are the President. Will this new office of yours not affect the efforts to make CAC one?
By the grace of God, it cannot affect the process. We are not supposed to select another set of leaders but if we did not, who will continue to discuss the process of the reconciliation? Now that we have new leaders, we are at the front and those who laboured and suffered with us must not just be abandoned on the road. We must discuss the issue of the reconciliation to be solid so that no one will be affected. That is why we are elected to discuss the issue and by the Grace of God, when CAC comes back to one, wherever they said every one of us should be, we are ready to go there, because it is the work of God.
As the President, what is your vision for the church?
I discovered that one of the problems we have in this church is the problem of unification of ministries which God gave to Christ Apostolic Church. God really blessed this church but we do not make use of them when God raised them. Many times because of envy and jealousy, some people who were supposed to be a blessing to this church had been neglected.
Our vision is to unite every ministry. The church has come to stay, CACSA has come to stay, WOSEM has come stay. Every ministry in the church has come to stay, our plan is to unite all together and we have started it. We have called all the church planters, women, men, evangelists and we are going to call the rest ministers. We are about to call the elders to come together. God has blessed this church with people of good potential but we don’t know how to manage them. As long as we don’t manage them, the church that is supposed to be rich will become poor church. For example, during a meeting with the Evangelists, we never asked or talked to them about money but were surprised that some of them stood up and started launching money for evangelism. One of them donated a hundred thousand naira and before the meeting ended, they had above seven hundred thousand naira. So, we want to harmonise this church, particularly the Supreme Council.
What is your advice for members of Christ Apostolic Church?
Member of Christ Apostolic Church are wonderful. This Church has really enjoyed the prayers of the past leaders and that prayer has sustained us, for the past 28 years of the crisis. If it were to be other Church, by now, they would have been forgotten. Christ Apostolic Church is still standing and the members believe in their Church. That in itself is one of the Blessings. I always love to preach to all our brethren whenever we meet for the past 28 years of the crisis. I always thank them for their support for those years. Concerning the peace move, we and our brothers from the other side have met since I resumed office. We have met once and told ourselves the truth about the way to reconcile the Church and this is made open to everyone.
Particularly, I said that day “If we fail to settle this matter in our own time, another generation will rise and settle it but God will judge every one of us by not using our own time to settle the crisis”. I believe there is a great future for the CAC. This church will bounce back and become great again. I don’t care what ever the problem we are facing presently. It will soon become a thing of the past. I also want to urge our brethren to continue praying for us. Without God, we can do but nothing. Apostle Paul says “Pray for us”. We need the prayer of every member of the Church and by the grace of God through their prayers, we will do what God wants us to do.
Thank you Sir.
God bless you.