Christianity and the Nigerian: What does Church mean to me?


What does Church mean to me?

Is it a building? A place you are meant to get all dressed up to the nines every Sunday?

My Christianity is very simple. I got born again as a ‘just turned teenager’ and I pretty much attended Campus fellowships and house fellowships almost all my christian walk.

When I hear people talk tithes/offerings/jets for pastors/luxury cars for pastors/books of 7 point ways to ‘sow seeds’ etc etc, my eyes simply glaze over.

I am part of a house fellowship – and have been for over 2 decades. We take turns volunteering our homes to meet in. There can be 20 people or 70 people. Or sometimes more. Peeps sit on sofas/chairs/the staircase etc etc. Nobody cares if anyone is dressed up or dressed down.

Everyone is encouraged to share. Everyone can ask ahead to give the teaching that week. Like the scriptures say – let each one come with a word/a prayer/a prophecy/an admonition/an encouragement/a teaching.

Eloquent or stammering – the Holy Spirit breathes on whatever is shared.

We share together, cry together, laugh together, pray together – we are family. If you have no food in your house, peeps will turn up with bags of food shopping. Cannot pay your rent or mortgage that month – peeps will chip in. Have a huge unexpected financial impacting situation? Brethren will look to help.

We have no formal tithing. A ‘white bucket’ is passed around at the end of fellowship, and peeps give whatever they choose. Oh, did I mention fellowship after fellowship where the family hosting fellowship serve up food? Whether biscuits o… agege bread and chicken o… or jollof rice with plenty meat, it is happy wolfed down. Families provide the food, the fellowship does, or other peeps bring along stuff to give to the hosts. As for the laughter and jokes interspersed with issues anyone wants to discuss in fellowship after fellowship??? Tis like having a weekly party with close friends…

We are a family. We care about each other. You got an issue? There are always people who love you on the other end of the phone if you want to talk – no judgement/no flogging your unworthiness. Our kids call the uncle or aunty they like, to share issues they think their parents won’t understand. The guys play tennis together once a week – tis their thing. Peeps visit each other to catch the breeze.

This the Christianity I know. Church is the body of Christ. The people. No artificial separation between the leadership and the people. One body. One Lord. One faith.

This is what Church and Christianity mean to me.

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