Pastor Itua Ighodalo and his elegant wife, Ibidun, are celebrating 13 years of heavenly matrimony, reports Ferdinand Ekechukwu
Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, in one of his popular hit songs on religious leaders and their followers the world over, said pastors’ houses are always the best. The afrobeat legend, in Pidgin English, sang: “Pastors’ house na hin dey fine pass.” Fela did not reckon with the flashy wives of most Nigerian pastors when he sang that song, perhaps because the phenomenon became pronounced after Fela died in 1997. This particular pastor’s wife here today isn’t “flashy” but spells elegance in a subtle and beautiful manner.
Her simplicity is charming. “She’s an attractive person,” her husband once acknowledged. “But then when we got talking, I found her to be simple, down to earth, sincere and willing to accept me for what I was and not what she thought I was.” The coming together of this wife, Ibidun, a celebrity and her husband, Pastor Itua Ighodalo, 13 years ago, was questioned by many in that as a pastor in his former church, consensus was that he ends the marriage and remain as a pastor. Unperturbed by that general consensus, he famously left shortly after his marriage to this adorable woman and owner of Elizabeth R, an events planning company.
On his decision to marry Ibidun then, he had said: “I didn’t think what they desired for me was right. I knew what I was doing when I got married. I received, or I thought I received the support of the church when I got married. And therefore, the solution to that situation was not ending the marriage. There were too many things involved; besides I love my wife, and I was getting on very well with her so why should I end a good thing.”
The wife and event planner, Ibidun and her hubby, Ituah, who is the head Pastor, Trinity House Church, Lagos, are today celebrating their 13th wedding anniversary. They got married in 2007. Ibidun took to her IG page last Sunday, February 16 to celebrate her husband. She wrote: “13th year anniversaries are symbolised by LACE… May our lives continue to be LACED in love May our love continue to be LACED with God’s grace. May our marriage and union continue to be LACED with peace, joy and happiness. May our peace continue to be LACED with God’s protection.
“Thank you for giving me peace. Thank you for being my peace. Thank you for allowing me to fly. Thank you for allowing me express who I am. Thank you for holding me Thank you for being my pillar of support Thank you for loving me unconditionally. Thank you for being my father.
Thank you for being my friend. Thank you for being my lover. Thank you for 13 years of divine love…. I love you now and forever. Happy anniversary my love @pastorituahighodalo#13Years #Anniversary #Marriage #Love #TheIghodalos.”
A woman of style and elegance, Ibidun is one of those celebrities who enjoyed the klieg lights right from her teenage years. As a beauty model, the then 18-year-old Ibidun Ajayi, an undergraduate of the University of Lagos, graced fashion magazines as the queen, who emerged without wearing a bikini. Now in her 40s, Ibidun, once recalled that she didn’t set out to marry a pastor: “I saw in him a father, and a confidant. He fitted into my father’s shoes and does all my late father did for me. So, when I met P. I (as she fondly calls him), I connected with him. He knew about the fact that I contested in a beauty pageant, where there was no indecent exposure then. Before we got married, he asked me a lot of questions because it was important that I was spiritually ripe and fit for him.”
Recalling how she met Pastor Ituah at the time, Ibidun added: “I was outside of an event venue and wanted to pick something inside the hall when I bumped into a man. ‘Oh, sorry,’ I said and went inside but something in my spirit told me that he was my husband! I didn’t believe the voice because that was the last thing on my mind. Later, we became friends, and I saw in him, a father and a confidant.” The couple, however, struggled with infertility and the arising pressures that come with it. This led them to adopt two lovely children named Keke and Zenan.
But before then, she had made up her mind to stop worrying over childbearing and to just keep trusting God while helping other couples through their own fertility journey. As she prayed and mulled over the idea, she felt peace and that was how her charity organisation, the Ibidunni Ighodalo Foundation was born. IIF is a non-profit organisation created to raise awareness on issues pertaining to infertility and to provide grants for couples that require fertility treatments such as In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and Intrauterine Insemination.
In the last few years, Ibidun has used her own life’s experience as the platform through which to extend a helping hand to those going through the same journey. The beautiful woman and social influencer isn’t stopping there. She has brought out a new scheme to connect desiring young ladies with potential partners through the power of social media.
An accountant by profession and ever so supportive and loving to his wonderful wife, friend and lover, as a popular pastor, Ituah has drawn a growing membership to Trinity House – a mega church in Victoria Island, Lagos and in his humble disposition would tell you that God owns the church.
“God almighty owns Trinity House. . . I’m the senior pastor. It’s a church of God. I’m just privileged to lead the church, and to direct it as I’m directed by God, so it actually belongs to God.”
Pastor Ituah is motivated by a deep desire to achieve, to succeed, to help, to change, so he goes everywhere with the desire to improve, or change the place to make things better. He sets out every morning to achieve for his church, for himself, for his family, for his business, and for the numerous people he take responsibility for, and what makes him very happy is when somebody’s life is changed and things get a lot better for that person.