INTERVIEW! Real reasons why some youths are leaving CAC- Pastor Adepoju

Pastor Richard Akinlayo Adepoju is the Zonal Superintendent of Christ Apostolic Church, Temitope Zone and the National Deputy Director in-charge of administration and finance of Royal Sheppard, Oyo State. In this interview with NIGERIAN TRIBUNE, he speaks on why CAC youths are migrating to new generation churches, among other issues .

You have a Muslim background. How did you become a Christian?

I was born on December 7, 1956, into the family of Mr. Moraina Adepoju. I come from a Muslim background. I went to school late because on the day of my christening, a prophet came to our village and prophesied that I will not practise Islam. He prophesied that I will be a minister of God. Because of the prophecy, my father did not allow me to go school at an earlier age. Later, my father enrolled me in an Arabic school.  After some years after finishing in the Arabic school. I registered in ICC Primary School then, now called Olubadan Primary School, Orita Aperin, Ibadan, Oyo State. That was how I started training and developing myself. No one took me to school, I personally enrolled myself in the school. I give God all the glory for where I am today because the prophecy came to pass in my life.

As one of the leaders in CAC, what is your assessment of the leadership of Christ Apostolic Church today?

 I am not yet one of the leaders of Christ Apostolic Church. We have five principal officers in CAC, that is, the President; the General Superintendent, the General Evangelist, the General Secretary  and the Finance Director. I am still the Zonal Superintendent. Although because of the grace of God upon my life, I move closer to them since all of them are my fathers. They remain good leaders and spiritual fathers to me. They are men of God people would like to move with.

What is the state of affairs in the church now, especially after the protracted crisis rocked it?

Everything is okay now in CAC.  You may have heard insinuations about supposed attractions among us. We have two factions; we have the Supreme Council led by Pastor Olagunju and the General Executives Council, which is headed by Pastor A O Akinosun.  But, I can tell you, both are one now; they held a series of meetings last September.  Both councils came together as one during their conference at Ikeji Arakeji, Osun State and they all rejoiced. I was one of the delegates.  So,there have been meetings to settle the entire crisis and we now use same Sunday School manual; that’s the beginning of peace in the church.

Now that both parties have decided to come back as one body. What are the things to look out for in the church?

I can’t say much about that now, but I know God has blessed the church with good leaders. We are already planning for the 100 years celebration of the Christ Apostolic Church.  The leaders have set the timetable and we are also planning to hold a number of revivals which will involve both parties.

It has been noticed that Christ Apostolic Church youths are migrating to new generation churches. What are you doing as a church to bring them back?

Those youths leaving for other denominations are going not because of any laxity in CAC. CAC is known for discipline. The youth only want to have the freedom to do just anything. Some of  them say CAC is not lively, but we have a lot of programmes for the youth. They want pre- mature freedom; they don’t want to stay under the control of their “God fathers”. Youths love new things but not all new things are good. If you are a true member of CAC and you are brought up in CAC, you would never leave the church, because, if we talk about signs and wonders, they happen in CAC. We use different musical instruments which our leaders never banned us from using them. How can they now say the church is not lively? What more would anyone want in CAC? We believe in serving God. Another thing I realise is that many of our churches do not appreciate their God-given talents. That is why some youths leave for other churches where they can be better appreciated or placed them on salary. Some youths leave CAC because of the money they receive in other churches, but as a leader in Christ Apostolic Church, I am aware that we have so many people we employ and they get paid as well. Our music director and his assistant are full-time employees and they are being paid.

Don’t you think it is necessary to pay them well because most of the youth are the ones fending for themselves?

I believe the talents God has given them must be used for God. I said earlier that CAC believes that you must use everything you have to serve God, but we still appreciate them in one way or the other.

As the national deputy director in charge of administration and finance, of Royal Sheppard, what are roles of Royal Sheppard and its relevance in CAC?

It is a youth movement, a para-military organisation.  We have our aims and objectives for establishing it; to make our youths prayerful; for soul winning; to make youth’s self-reliance and great and to be empowered. It is for their physical. They are the ones that control crowd when there is an event. We have so many of them in our churches whenever we have occasions. We are not for social clubs but for church activities alone. By the grace of God, the Oyo State Government recognises the youth movement.

 Concerning the Seed of Blessing fee been paid by every member in CAC, what is the relevance and the gain to the members?

It is an annual levy for all members of the church. We use the seed of blessing to proclaim the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. The seed of blessing started back then just to raise fund for the central territory.  The leader of the church then noticed that immediately we started paying the fund, God has been blessing us in every area, and the church is moving forward and changed the name to “Seed of blessing”. So, it is for the growth of the church, evangelism, charity and development of the church and Joseph Ayodele Babalola University (JABU).

What is the percentage of CAC members that gains admission to JABU?

So many claimed JABU’s fee is high, but compared to other universities across Nigeria, the fee is not much; anything private involves money. Our wards don’t pay much, compared to children from other denominations. There is reduction of fee for any of our members children who want to attend the institution, in-as-much as they can show their receipt of “Seed of Blessing” payment as a true member of CAC.

 The 2019 general election is fast-approaching, what is your advice for the government?

We will all live to see the election in 2019 by God’s grace and God’s choice will emerge. Let us give God the chance to choose for us; it’s not a do-or-die election. If you are rigged in, the person would be rigged out and in fact, face the consequences at the end because the Bible says no sinner will go unpunished.

 You are always busy, how do you cope?

I don’t go out so much on Mondays, but you know God gives us strength. As a human being I know we have to be careful on how we use ourselves, we have been advised to always find time to rest at the appropriate period.

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