•Says he sold Fufu on the streets at age 6
•’ How platform to settle quarrels metamorphosed to ‘ Anointing Service’
By Sam Eyoboka
PASTOR Johnson Oluwatomisin (Tomisin) Kalejaiye, a Regional Evangelist of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, believes there is nothing any man of God can do without the God of man. By his Anointing Service programme, God has used him to liberate thousands from the oppression of the devil. The Ilaje-born fisherman- turned-accountant and a Fellow of two professional bodies was one year older on April 1. In this interview, he bares his mind on the 20th anniversary of the Anointing Service and many other personal issues. Excerpts….
How did the Anointing Service vision start?
We didn’t start Anointing Service as a ministry or as a church. I’m an evangelist in the Redeemed Christian Church of God. So it’s not a church or a ministry. We just started it to win souls. And the foundation started from trying to settle quarrels among warring parties where they posted me to. There was disagreement among people, so we got there just to settle their differences. That was how we started by me counseling and praying for them. Later, it metamorphosed into a morning programme. People now said they wanted to give it a name, and I said they could give it any name but they shouldn’t call it ‘deliverance’ because I don’t like the way they do their deliverance as though they are just trying to entertain demons. I believe that deliverance has to do with anointing. He sent His Word and the Word delivered. So they now called it Anointing Service. That was how we started.
And because we wanted everyone to benefit, instead of having it in a particular location, we had to do it on geographical locations. We have this one in Festac axis to cover Amuwo, Satellite. Then we have one in Egbeda to cover that area. We have in Ikoyi, in Surulere, in Lekki. In USA, we hold similar services in 14 states and, in the UK, we have it in every place. So I minister everyday, sometimes twice, sometimes thrice, sometimes four to five times. In fact there was a time I ministered six times. I see the joy. It’s not about revenue; it’s about revelation, just to make sure that I win thousands of souls for God every month. If you calculate the souls God has won through me since the beginning of this month. I give God the praise. But if I’m going to do it in one location, there is no way I can get those souls.
Did it all start in Abule Odu?
Yes! We were to start in Festac Town, but I think they made a mistake. I thought it was going to be in the evening on Thursday, but they made it in the morning while I was somewhere else. So when I got here, they said it was in the morning and I said no problem. So we started it in Abule Odu, Egbeda. But this is the second place.
Besides the soul winning aspect, how do you assess the programme 20 years after?
We give God praise because apart from the people who answer altar calls, it has this multiplying effect. If a married man gets born again today, by the grace of God, the wife and children will also get born again, and through them, some people will also surrender their lives. So it has a chain effect.
There’s also the healing aspect…
I don’t believe in talking about miracles. I concentrate on soul winning. There is no way you will do that without miracles following. But I rather advertise Christ than talking about miracles. I talk about the miracle worker more than the miracle itself. It’s like getting the object and then you control the shadow. But when you lay emphasis on this shadow—miracles—what about the object? So we show them how to catch fish instead of giving them fish. I even correct this among my colleagues talking about miracles, people bringing wheelchairs to show miracles. You don’t need all these things. Let them have Christ. When they have Christ, it doesn’t matter where they are all over the globe, miracles will follow. You can get a miracle on your bed. You can get a miracle in your bathroom. God can answer your prayers in your bedroom. But you come and accept and do His will. They say any committee without a commitment will commit crime. Whatever God asks you to do, do it and do it very well. I said something initially, if I had introduced revenue, the ministry would have collapsed. So it’s not about money. All these places where I go and do Anointing Service, their offering is for them, not for me. If I had been collecting their offerings, by now I would have been one of the richest pastors in the world. But it’s not about finance but about revelation.
20 years down the line, how have you sustained it? Has there been any temptation big enough that you couldn’t stand it?
Up till today, I still see myself as the least. If you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything. I have not even started, and I love the job I’m doing. Winning souls have taken me beyond the level I ever imagined. But it’s the grace of God. I’m not after position. I don’t go for grade but grace. It’s not about title but about mantle. Some people go for title but with mantle, you will control title holders. The Lord had opened my eyes early enough to know the difference between mantle and title. When God gives you responsibilities, He will certainly give you ability. So I seek responsibility. I’m not asking God for anointing. I’m asking God that I want to win 5,000 souls for Him every month because I know that if God gives you a mountain, He will certainly give you an elevator. But some people ask for elevators when they have no mountain to climb. I have never sat down one day to say I have arrived. Even those who wanted to leave and came to me, I begged them not to go. If you are doing what God asked you to do, it’s God that repays. But some people believe in titles; they want to be General Overseers. By the grace of God, I don’t want to be a General Overseer. In the last 20 years, I cannot say I have not been discouraged. There’s no way one can avoid that. But I don’t fall for distractions. Sometimes, I see these distractions as a medium of me moving forward. I don’t pay attention to them. I ignore them. I have a focus. I know where I’m going and I know the person I’m serving. Most of the distractions in this world come in attractive packages; so I don’t even look at those sides. I just face my front and God is always there. Like I said, the secret is the grace of God. Without the grace of God, anything could have happened. Not that I’ve not had some distractions, but I don’t look at those sides because I still believe that the best is yet to come.
There are some landmark events in this past 20 years. Can you share some?
I’ve heard a testimony where somebody had triplets to the glory of God, and then we contributed towards the welfare of these triplets. And I spoke to about 4,000 people that when they were coming the following week, they should come with something to give to the parents. That is what I do. Responsibility without ability is equal to liability but responsibility plus ability will make you do exploits. I have this passion for widows because my father died in 1960 at the age of 34; my mother became a widow, so I know the meaning of widowhood. So, usually, I take care of widows. I buy bags of rice, noodles, just to distribute to them. And then you see that they are happy. In addition to preaching, we also support.
You said you started this ministry from settling quarrels. Did you experience anything like that?
No, that one is over. If you quarrel at this level of ours, then you need deliverance. An offence against your neighbor will create a fence between you and God. I don’t get angry. You can’t offend me again. Even if you slap me, I will never retaliate. But the danger is that God will fight back. My house was demolished in Lekki by someone I never knew, that was about seven years ago. The lawyer said she wanted to go to court on my behalf and I said no. If I’m asked to come to court today, will I leave this programme because of property?
So you let it go?
Of course! But I am alive.
What’s your most priced possession?
Christ! If you take away my property, it doesn’t matter. But the danger is that you can’t take it away and be alive. I trust God.
Can you tell us a little bit about your background?
Everything is the grace of God. My background was very rough. I grew up without a father. I hawked fufu for my mum at the age of six. I sold soda. I caught fish. Apostle Peter and I come from the same local government, Ilaje. But I never stayed there. I stayed in Lagos. The journey was rough, but God didn’t allow my background to put me on the ground. But it’s the grace of God because I never saw myself here. I was told that right from my mother’s womb, a prophecy came that this one will be used all over the world by God. So every other thing that happened came as a result of the prophecy. It wasn’t as if I was born into a wealthy family. But with Christ, I thank God for that grace. So Christ is everything.
How many of you were in the family?
My father had three. I was the last born. I never knew him. After my father died, my mother remarried and had two more and they are doing well.
Which schools did you attend?
I am seriously educated because all of you went to one primary school but I went to four primary schools. My mother went from Sokoto to Ibadan to Lagos to Ondo State, so my education was staggering. I ended up as a senior prefect, but I had no shoes to wear. My secondary school was in Ondo State, tertiary education was in Lagos. I studied accountancy and public finance. I gave my life to Christ in 1983. It was not that I wanted to. I play drums. I approached someone to take me to his church, Cherubim & Seraphim, so that I could be playing drums there. He said he wanted to introduce me to their pastor so that I could be playing for them. I compose songs even till date. So I went to him in his house and suddenly I saw a stick in his hand, this stick used by C&S, then I asked him, ‘Sir, are you up to that level?’ He said I should forget that, everyone uses it. I said to myself, ‘No, no, this is not the kind of church I want to attend’. I pretended as if I wanted to greet someone and I just left. I never went to that church. I went to his house for us to go to the church but when I saw that stick, that was the saving grace because if they had introduced me to that pastor and they gave me the grace to play drums, that would have been it for me. Someone now led me to the Redeemed Christian Church of God. I was working in WAEC then. I started my career there. They told a lie against me; so I went to church. Not that I wanted to surrender my life, but because I wanted the pastor to pray for me. Daddy G.O. was the one ministering. It was a Thursday. He made an altar call. And as we were about to kneel down on the altar, he said the Lord told him that all our problems were solved. I was shocked because he had not even listened to my problem. Lo and behold, I got to the office on Monday and then my boss recommended me that what he said was false and that gave me back my job. When God solved that problem, I said, ‘Lord, I will serve you’. And since then, no going back. I’m a stubborn Christian. If Boko Haram brings cutlass here, I will tell you if you want to kill, kill. I’ve gotten to that level. And that gives me confidence. I don’t believe so much in churches. I believe in the kingdom so I do the kingdom’s work.
How do you feel when you make an altar call and you see thousands of people giving their lives to Christ?
I started as a fisherman. You know when you use a hook to catch a fish, it’s just one. No matter how good you are, a hook will only give you a fish at a time. But when you use a net, you will catch as many as possible. As a fisherman, when you have so many, you will be happy.
What’s the full meaning of J.T.?
J stands for Johnson. The other one is Oluwatomisin which means God is enough for me to serve. When I was doing my school cert, they only gave us 23 boxes, so there was no where I could write Johnson Oluwatomisin Kalejaiye. So I now shortened it to Johnson Tomisin Kalejaiye. When WAEC brought the result, they just put J.T. Kalejaiye. So, I began to bear J.T. Kalejaiye and do you know that Kalejaiye means sit down and enjoy life?