The late founder of the Synagogue Church of All Nations
(SCOAN) Prophet TB Joshua, was born on June 12, 1963, in
Arigidi village in Akoko, Ondo State, and grew up to become
one of Nigeria’s most charismatic pastors, televangelists,
seers, and a revered man of God.
Joshua was known for his popularity across Africa, Asia,
and America with a huge media presence which had well
over 5 million fans on Facebook while his YouTube channel,
Emmanuel TV, had over 1.5 million subscribers and was the
world’s most viewed Christian ministry on the platform
before it was suspended by YouTube last month.
He was described at various times as the ‘Oprah of
Evangelism’ and ‘YouTube’s most popular Pastor.’
During his lifetime, Prophet TB Joshua was awarded various
accolades, notably receiving the Officer of the Order of the
Federal Republic (OFR) by the Nigerian government in 2008,
and being voted the Yoruba man of the decade by Pan-
Yoruba media outlet Irohin-Odua.
In 2011, Forbes Magazine, named Joshua Nigeria’s third-
richest pastor, although the claim was immediately denied
in a statement by the church. Joshua was as controversial
as he was popular and often hugged the headlines in
negative ways due to his unorthodox ways of performing
miracles as well as several accusations of staged
deliverance and alleged sexual immorality.
However, here are 10 interesting things many may not know
about the man of God.
1. His strange birth
For those who don’t know, the birth of Prophet T.B. Joshua
on June 12, 1963, in a small village called Arigidi in Akoko,
Ondo State, was more of a mystery as he reportedly stayed
beyond the nine months required for babies to stay in their
According to stories, Joshua came after 15 good months in
which, to the amazement of the simple people of Arigidi,
was rather strange and a precursor to signs that he would be
up to mysterious things in the world and that he would be a
2. Unprivileged and illiterate background
The late TB Joshua grew up in a poor home and due to the
inability of his parents to afford sending him to school, he
didn’t complete his secondary school education, dropping
out of form one and had to engage in menial jobs to
support his family and siblings, including working in a poultry
3. Attempts to join the military
Prophet TB Joshua reportedly attempted to join the Nigerian
Army but couldn’t scale through the recruitment exercise as
he could not afford the transport money to travel to Kaduna
State for the recruitment.
4. Quiet family man
Many Nigerians do not know that Prophet TB Joshua was a
happily married man and a father of three children. He was
married to Evelyn Joshua while their eldest daughter, Serah,
is a graduate from the London School of Economics. He
kept his family out of the limelight around him.
Joshua was honoured as the ‘Yoruba man of the decade’, by
IrohinOdua, the first pan-Yoruba news outlet. In recognition
of his humanitarian activities, he was awarded a National
Honor by the Nigerian government in 2008 as well as
receiving a letter of appreciation from the United Nations.
Read also: T.B Joshua reported dead.
6. His ministry
Joshua’s Christian TV station, Emmanuel TV, made his
ministry more exposed, drawing more and more foreigners
from all around the world to his weekly church services.
He was not devoid of controversies as he was often trailed
by storms mainly due to the nature of sicknesses he
reportedly healed people of, and afflictions he had delivered
people from. He was also known for his predictions/
prophecies, most especially the controversy that stemmed
from his prediction of the American president during the
He had prophesied that Hillary Clinton would win the US
Presidential elections, with what he claimed would be a
narrow victory but in the end, Clinton was roundly defeated
by Donald Trump.
8. Deaths in the Synagogue
In 2014, during a worldwide programme at the Ikotun, Lagos
headquarters of the Synagogue Church of All Nations, a
guesthouse collapsed in the church compound, leading to
the killing of about 115 South Africans.
According to Lagos State officials, the collapse of the
building was a result of construction inadequacies, but the
church dismissed the assertion, claiming that there was an
aircraft that was spotted circling over the building before it
The church, asserted that it was an attempt to kill Joshua
and has maintained that stance till date.
Many Nigerians did not know that despite his lack of basic
education, Joshua was an author and publisher of many
books including Christian literatures. Some of the titles
include The Mirror, The Step Between You and The Cure,
Daily Time With God and What The Future Holds.
TB Joshua was a silent philanthropist who did not like
blowing his trumpet. He was known to have doled out cash
gifts and foodstuff including other material gifts, to widows,
the poor and the downtrodden who visit his church.
He was once reported to have spent $20 million on the
education, healthcare and rehabilitation programs for former
Niger Delta militants, repentant armed robbers and sex
workers who came to the church for ‘deliverance’.
He also had an uncanny love for football when in 2009, he
formed a football club, My People’s FC, which was meant to
empower talented youths in the ministry. The club churned
out the likes of Sani Emmanuel who was the top scorer and
Most Valuable Player at the 2009 FIFA U-17 World Cup, as
well as former Super Eagles midfielder, Ogenyi Onazi,
11. Social media presence
Joshua was a very popular figure on social media, garnering
over 1.5 million subscribers on the YouTube channel of
Emmanuel TV, with another whopping three million likes on
Facebook. His Twitter handle was also not left out as he had
well over 180,000 followers.