Yesterday morning, Nigerians on Twitter were having their regular Sunday-Style delight. If you’re on Twitter you’d know the routine by now: football, gender roles & cooking (they never get tired of that one!) and church attendance quotes. So yesterday was pretty much standard. And then… a tweet by popular Lagos Pastor, Sam Adeyemi started making the rounds.
Hash tag… Mental Health!
Sam Adeyemi is the pastor of DayStar ministries; and in an age where we hear all sorts of scandalous stories about Nigerian pastors, this particular pastor has a clean ‘rap sheet.’
The story is that, yesterday he had talked about mental health issues in church… so, he decided to share the Rhema with his followers, and of course the unreached, on Twitter.
It was going all well and dandy! People were glad that this preacher was using his pulpit to do something other than talk about women’s dressing and whether women should be in the kitchen, or women’s ability to pray for more than an hour.
The Tweet that sparked the outrage.
Say what now?
Some Twitter users attempted to help the world understand what he meant… You know, break it down into layman’s speak for the rest of the world.
When we inherited sins we also inherited all other things with it including mental health and all other issues. Sam Adeyemi is right.
— Alh Vladimir Putin (@femiTRIPP) October 30, 2016
Pastor Sam Adeyemi admitted that he wasn’t a psychiatrist and wasn’t tweeting from a position of expertise on mental health issues – simply from his position as a spiritual leader.
He then goes on to prescribe a solution: sensitivity to “God’s word” – and as an addendum, he tweets that you should seek medical help. Because “Seeking medical help for physical or mental illness does not contradict God’s word or having faith for your healing”
Nigerians were NOT having any of it
Shorter Sam Adeyemi: Mental illness is pretty much your fault for not being strong in the Word, but seek help sha.
— S. (@saratu) October 30, 2016
— Pa Ikhide (@ikhide) October 30, 2016
Pastor Sam Adeyemi reminds me of the Pastor that said that God sent the flood in America to Gay people.
His house was flooded after
— Ayobami (@dondekojo) October 30, 2016
Kids, calm down! There’s no need for mudslinging or flood invoking. Here’s some more explanation from Pastor Sam’s account on what he actually meant.
There was an attempt clarify on the type of sin Pastor Sam meant… Adamic versus Personal.
You gotta love social media. However on a very serious note, this tweet concludes it for us:
— Adetutu Balogun (@Tutsy22) October 30, 2016
Religious leaders have a huge, dedicated and almost fanatic following in Nigeria. It is important that the messages put out on their platforms are disseminated properly and effectively – without any need for some form of misinterpretation and misconception.