May we know you for the sake of the readers?
I am Apostle James Iyanda. The Apostle is from my father as I am not the type that is a title freak and I use it only to remember my father. The name of my church is Go Ye Pentecostal Mission International and I am the Regional Overseer of the church. We have a General Overseer, but I am the Regional Overseer for Lagos and Ogun state.
Your programme, The Mega Crusade, is a week from now, what can you tell us about the crusade?
This crusade is a vision that God gave to me. This is because I found out that there’s a major problem the Body of Christ is having and that problem is Unity. We are not united and as many as we are, we are divided and I feel that has really affected us negatively and most times, the church is falling before its enemies and the enemies and opposition know how to divide us. They really understand us that as mighty as the church is, we are much divided and they are capitalising on our weakness. We are starting from next week to make sure that the Body of Christ in Alimosho knows that we can come together, seek God to do something great and that is the major reason for the crusade.
The second major reason is that as we come together, there will be a very huge reward and great souls would be won for God. The uniqueness of the crusade is that it will involve different denominations coming together and this is the first time that such is happening. Due to the rigorous work involved, we have decided that it wouldn’t come every year.
We have very prominent men of God scheduled to be preaching at this Mega Crusade. Many out there are saying that most of these ministers on the poster are not going to come, that they were just put there to attract attention. What do you have to say to this?
They are right to have said that looking at the busy schedule of these ministers, but this crusade is led by the Holy Ghost and that’s why we, if not 100 percent sure, we are sure that 90 percent of them will be present because they picked the date by themselves and the miracle that happened is that, everyone picked a day knowing that it’s going to be good for them and no one picked the other person’s day. As they called, they were picking different dates.
Right now, I know of one person that will not be present in the programme due to certain circumstances. He already gave us his word. Asides that, we have most of us coming.
What should people in Alimosho be expecting from this programme?
They should be expecting a very unique way of worshipping God, a different atmosphere and not an atmosphere where people are thinking about their empire, not about selfish empire building but a place of God, a place where they would find the hand of God. It would be the Body of Christ, different denominations coming together to stay together in unity to worship God. It’s going to be a high worship before God.
Secondly, we would get to understand, to know each other the more. A lot of people across different denominations will be meeting together. There would be a lot of wonderful connection within the Body of Christ.
Another aspect is that, the very first time the people came together like that in the Bible, something tremendous happened – the Holy Ghost came down. So I can see unusual display of God’s power in this programme because God is going to show Himself great and mighty on behalf of his people, knowing full well that when Christ is coming, he is not coming for any denomination but for the church which is the body.
We are using Alimosho as a starting point. I know that this vision will be able to grow and I believe that other people will buy into the vision. So as it is happening here, it will also be happening in other places in Nigeria. The programme is going to be a time for miracles and souls will be won. Long time questions will be answered as a lot of people who have questions, God will answer them because united we stand and divided we fall.
As the PFN Chairman in Alimosho, one would often ask what impact has the church had on the people and the community?
The church is doing the bit that it can. We are looking forward to having a church that is controlled whereby we can sample and examine what you are doing in the church and I think Association of Churches will do that. Churches now, to some extent, I know that people are doing their own bit to affect the community by affecting the people knowing too well that the people that are gathered in the church are also from the community and things like health programmes, helping the youth through employment, the church has been doing that. Affecting the people means affecting the community.
Alimosho has suffered greatly irrespective of the fact that politicians depend on Alimosho to get elected into office. What role is the church in Alimosho playing to correct this? Presently, a state of emergency has been declared to fix the roads in Lagos but no Alimosho road is included. What is the church going to do about this as the church is also a voice and an authority?
Everything about politics is wrong in Lagos and the church has been doing its bit. This is why I said we need to be united because the church is divided. The church has gone to sleep and most times when they want to shut us up, they bring someone and say the person is from the church and whether the church likes it or not – they are the ones who bring the person, we don’t bring the person. The church has never brought anyone; the political leaders bring people to lead us.
The problem we are having is that we are not united because if we’re united, we will be able to bring out somebody on our own. The opposition knows us very well and they know how to tackle us. Yes, Alimosho is being abandoned, they have forgotten Alimosho and the only time that we are important is when it is time for election. Helplessly, we have been going to give them that vote because those who needed our votes have a good structure on ground and those who can go against them do not have good structure. We don’t have a structure to fight and they know how to divide us.
Once we are not united, we are dividable anytime. So, if A is telling you that this is what we should do, don’t believe A because at the end of the day, he will sell you out. Sometimes, if we begin to say a lot of things, you get yourself into trouble. That is what is going on in Alimosho and Nigeria as we are eating what they gave us to eat; we are not eating what we want. The day those in government feel that we should be remembered, they’ll remember us. The church can’t do anything about it until the church is united.
That’s the reason for this crusade. We can begin to gain attention of others. After the crusade, we can begin to do meeting together and if we are sincere, we will be able to make headway. But if we are not sincere, then let us face heaven and leave the earth for those who own it (laughs). I believe politics can’t take away heaven from us so we will try and do the little we can, hence the need to come together. The crusade is not the end as we have a lot to do as a church.
Finally, we still have people who believe in prophecy and as a man of God who God has placed in charge of Alimosho at the moment, what word do you have for Alimosho?
I see Alimosho being well developed. I see God’s hand all over Alimosho and anywhere you see God’s hand, that’s where civilisation is. Wherever you see God having dominion, civilisation will come and darkness will disappear. Different ideas that will move this city forward and that’s why we need prayers. I see that when God takes over Alimosho, you will see a new Alimosho, a well-developed and transformed one.