Nigerian cleric and founder Synagogue Church of all Nations, SCOAN, Temitope Balogun, TB Joshua, says he is lucky to be alive.
He said this at a special sermon to mark his 55th birthday. Joshua was born June 12, 1963 in Arigidi, Ondo State.
To celebrate the occasion, he released unseen footage of his early life and ministry, revealing his impoverished upbringing.
“Who are we celebrating? Don’t forget – he is not a superstar but a man of the people,” Joshua told congregants, adding that people should see his birthday as an opportunity to help “those who need them”.
Explaining his mysterious birth, Joshua stated that he spent fifteen months in his mother’s womb before she finally delivered him at Egbe Hospital in Kogi State, Nigeria.
The cleric also recalled his near death experience as a baby in which he was almost crushed by a rock which fell through the roof of his house from a nearby construction site.
“Miraculously, the baby was not touched but found saved on the other side of the net where he was lying,” Joshua explained, showing congregants the exact rock which had been preserved.
He said guests who witnessed the incident gave a string of names to the baby, including ‘Temitope’ which was eventually adopted by the family.
“I found myself in a simple and humble family background. I mean, lacking basic means of life,”the cleric described of his upbringing, showing pictures of the tiny, disheveled house he was brought up in.
“I was a baby before the death of my father. Consequently, I knew nothing about my late father and the entire family burden rested squarely on my mother’s shoulders,” he added.
The renowned preacher paid a special tribute to his late mother, “who always advised me to look into my love walk”.
The cleric added further details about the “epileptic fits” he encountered in his education.
“I attended six different colleges in less than one year,” he recounted, mentioning the academic institutions.
“This record is not a way of saying I have arrived but to encourage the weak – those without fast legs or human help – that there is hope, and Jesus is the hope,” Joshua stressed, adding that further records of his early life would be released on subsequent birthday celebrations.
“Concentrate on your future. What you are going through is a preparation for your future, a bridge to your future”.