The Fountain of Life Church’s “Discovery for Women” rally, a twice-in-a-year power packed session of spiritual empowerment and impartation for women from various walks of life, held last Sunday, at the main auditorium of the Fountain of Life Church, Ilupeju, Lagos.
It was the first rally in 2019 with the theme, “New Possibilities” and had thousands of women throng to the church premises.
The event hosted by Pastor Taiwo and Nomthi Odukoya featured a renowned gospel music artiste, Mercy Chinwo amongst others and focused on liberating women from the mental and societal shackles that limit them, as well as empower them with renewed strength for achieving their potential.
Speaking with journalists just before the event kicked off, convener of the programme, Pastor Taiwo Odukoya said Discovery for Women aims basically to encourage women, reminding them of the reason for their creation.
“God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion …” Then when it came to the turn of the woman he said, “I will make for you a help meet.” That’s the one that would help you with all the tasks of your life. And so God made a woman.
“So what I usually ask my self is that why didn’t God tell the dog or goat to be a help meet to the man why did he has to go back and create a woman for the man?
“So a woman was created adequately to be the support that a man needs to have dominion here on earth. We discover that even the United States today realises that and they are now giving attention to women”, Odukoya said.
He said therefore that “if you want to change the society and stabilise the community, educate a woman because they would in turn educate the children.
“They would be the ones to stand and nurture the children and that is why we are giving a lot of attention to women and help them be the best that they can be, supporting humanity and making humanity to do what God has called us to do on earth.”
Speaking on the theme for the programme tagged, “New Possibilities”, the cleric explained that, “we themed it so because life is defined by ebbs and flows, and usually when you get to the ebbs, there is tendency for you to get stuck. But you don’t have to get stuck.
“You can have a continuous flow in Jesus name. So we want to encourage people – in setbacks, disappoints and things not measuring up as planned, that usually truncate a lot of people’s drams and drive for the future.
“We don’t want that happening to our women. We want them to know that we can suffer some setbacks and then get up again to go. So we encourage and equip them adequately with all that they need to know”.
Consequently, Odukoya’s expectations at the end of the programme was to see women that would be able to rise up above the challenges of the moment, women who would not just rise up above the challenges but also carry the children and community along.
“I want to give an example of Rwanda, during the genocide, it is amazing that it was the women that rally round to say no; we are going to take our country back and for the first time we had a national assembly that is dominated by women. And today, talk of development and progress in Africa; you want to point to Rwanda.
“That does not mean that they are better than men but that is what they are created for – filling in where there are gabs, help the man to realise his stand again and to go ahead and so the man goes fighting while the women help to stabilise him. So the woman is needed”, he said.
Odukoya stressed further that what Nigeria has to do at the moment is to go back and educate the people and particularly, the women in the North otherwise the problem that is perennial in the North will persist, adding, “So we have the problem of education and we need to educate our women”.
Speaking further on the need for women to be educated, he said, “For example, look at all the places that Boko Haram has been attacking, the men go to fight and they are dead and gone and then the women are left with the children and they are the ones that stay with the children at the refugee camps. So we can see why God said that man needs a helper and man really needs a woman that would stand by him always.”
“So we want to preserve posterity. We want to project into the future; we want to develop an advanced mind in the woman. I am of the view that every woman should be educated and empowered.
Every woman should be able to stand by herself and for herself before even getting married. So when she comes in, she comes in submitting to her husband, the two are one and then they have a formidable front and so you can imagine the future of their children.
“Unlike now in most parts of Nigeria, the women are just so silent and so you pack them as sardine and all they do are to make children. But when a woman is educated, she would know that she is not a baby machine. So you won’t tell a woman to go and give birth to 12 children. She has her life; she has her future and these are the kind of things that we teach them”, Odukoya noted.
The Fountain of Life Church helmsman who revealed that there was also the “Discovery for Men”, noted that the first rally for Discovery for Men will be held on March 17.
“So we run the two side by side and we have been running these programmes for about 20 years. So we talk to the men as well. As a matter of fact we are taking the Discovery for Men in stages.
“We have two rallies in the church and then we are taking it to the community to encourage our men who are already drenched to begin to rise up. Men need to be encouraged because men are easily discouraged even much more than women”, he said.
Emphasising the role of women in nation building, Odukoya said, “When your homes are stable, your nation would be stable, when your homes are not stable, then you are looking for trouble and then we would raise children who are vagabonds. God forbid! And then there would be no future for our children. So the women must be equipped to raise them.”
“Yes I’m interested in my children, I stay with them, I oversee what they do, but much more, my wife, I could remember when our children were growing up, some were trained here and some abroad, I’ll call them once a week, but my wife of blessed memory will call them every day, so most of the things I don’t know about them she knew everything. So we must educate and empower the women because the woman who is not educated can only take a child as far as she has. So why don’t we educate the women.”