Yesterday, We Posted a Post on Pastor Adeboye's Interview with Al-Jazeera about Owning a Private Jets [See it Here if you Missed it].
The interview granted by the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, to Al Jazeera has stirred a heated debate on the social media. Many are in support while others are not happy with him.
“There are things you need, which you must have if you are to be efficient. If you have to oversee churches in 160 nations, you can’t do that on a bicycle,” Pastor Adeboye had told Mohammed Adow of Al Jazeera.
But what is the crux of the matter?
Pastor Adeboye is one of the increasing numbers of Pentecostal pastors in Nigeria that have acquired private jets for themselves. Many Nigerians have criticised these pastors, arguing that they are being insensitive to the poverty among their members.
As would be expected, Pastor Adeboye’s justification for his ownership of a private jet has divided Nigerians on various social networks as some agreed with his opinion while many opposed him.
Onyianyi, a member of a popular online forum, Nairaland, argues that it was wrong for Adeboye to own a private jet when the majority of his members live below the poverty line and wallow in abject poverty.
He says, “I’m not a member of any of these Pentecostal churches but Adeboye is one pastor I respect so much. This time around he got it wrong, there’s no reason for a man of God with millions of impoverished followers to be cruising in a private jet.
“After all, are they more committed in this ministry than Jesus Christ? Our Lord Jesus never used a private boat or a private camel during his time. Yet he could easily command one to his usage. Christ, though very rich, chose to live a poor life so that his message can easily get across to the poor.”
Also commenting on the issue in Punch, a reader, Zoemed, says Pastor Adeboye’s defence was not good enough. Hear him: “I had expected a better defence rather than this ‘I need a plane to do a better job of supervising churches under my ministry’! What are the roles of Subordinate pastors? The Catholic Archdiocese of New York alone could buy many jets for the Pope but they spend most of their money on helping the poor, providing hospital care and welfare for the downtrodden.
“Our Pentecostal churches cannot even build [free] hospitals and affordable schools to supplement the little we have.”
But rising in defence of Pastor Adeboye, another reader, Adeola says the private jet is necessary. In her words: “For a man to visit 160 countries in a year is never a joke. Why shouldn’t he have a jet if his church can provide it? You and I know how ‘sound’ our aviation industry is. For a minister of God who is billed to preach in a particular place with other programmes following to have a flight delay or outright cancellation without prior notification, is a loss that cannot be quantified.
“Holding of crusade is different from political gathering, which many of you understand better. The mandate given to these ministers is urgent, the time is short and it covers the entire world. This is more than that of the President. Leave them alone as they will give account of their stewardship to God.”
Catholics introduced Christianity to the Pentecostals but things have changed. Since our Pentecostal churches are now rich I won't say a pastor should not own a private jet, but the lives of members of these churches must improve. In fact, attending certain Pentecostal churches in Nigeria today should be a ticket to a comfortable life for an average person. The money is there! We can do it!!