Enoch Adeboye, the leader of the redeemed Christian Church of God, has warned the next leaders of the Pentecostal movement to exercise ethical discretion about their sexual proclivities, and said he refused to hire a secretary as one of the precautions against possible allegations of violation, reports Premium Times. .
“When you find yourself facing youthful lust, run away,” said Adeboye on Friday. “You can say I’m out of fashion, I agree, I will never have a private secretary who is a woman.”
Mr. Adeboye’s comments, presented in a monthly church program on Friday night, marked his first public reaction to the latest rape scandal to consume a famous preacher and founder of one of the largest churches in Nigeria.
Biodun Fatoyinbo was charged last month with violent sexual behavior by Busola Dakolo, a former member of his Assembly of the Commonwealth of Zion, COZA. The denunciations of Mrs. Dakolo, related in a video interview with YNaija, provoked condemnations and protests for the resignation of the preacher.
Mr. Adeboye, 77, and popular in all segments of Nigerian society, refused to mention Mr. Fatoyinbo directly in his sermon, but said he was obligated to address the problems related to the scandal, however.
He also recognized the authority of both the Christian Association of Nigeria and the Pentecostal Association of Nigeria to directly address allegations of sexual violence and misconduct against pastors.
Christian bodies have been under public pressure to demand better accountability from their member churches amid growing accusations of misconduct against key preachers, including Suleiman Johnson and Temitope Joshua. All of them denied the accusations.
Both associations made comments about Mr. Fatoyinbo’s scandal, but seemed unable to exercise any disciplinary measure on the preacher, who resigned voluntarily on Monday despite denying the accusations.
But “I feel compelled to say some things to the young and future ministers,” said Adeboye, according to a transcript of the program posted on Twitter. “There is nothing hidden that can not be discovered or manifested. Mark 4:22. ”
Mr. Adeboye said that young preachers should take additional security measures with respect to women, especially those who would catch them, because the public would not believe them in the event of a lawsuit for misconduct.
“When a woman accuses you of something, nobody will listen to you if you are right or not,” he said. “Be wise!”
Mr. Adeboye said his advice may seem too old for the younger generation, but it worked for him since he was ordained in 1975.
“It’s better to be outdated and live than to be modern and die,” he said.
Although most of Nigeria’s leading preachers have continued to avoid making public comments about rape allegations, Mr. Adeboye has expanded the list of those who have spoken.
Earlier this week, two Lagos-based preachers, Sam Adeyemi and Poju Oyemade, sympathized with the alleged rape victims of Mr. Fatoyinbo and other colleagues in Christ, and called pastors to be more scrupulous in their relationship with the female followers.