The Masked Dance of Lovina and Enoch Iburene
On Saturday, February 10, 2012, Mrs. Lovina Amangala Iburene, Pastor and founder of the Truth Ministry and co-founder of Christ World Charity Ministry, Lagos, and her husband, Enoch Iburene took virtual space on the Saturday Vanguard Newspaper to attack the Brotherhood of the Cross and Star and its Founder and Sustainer, Leader Olumba Olumba Obu on all scores.
They summed up their hateful commentary by blaspheming the Divine Kingdom and the Founder, describing them as notorious and evil. They saw nothing good in the same Spiritual Kingdom that gave them deliverance.
Their interview was a rehash of the false accusations adopted by enemies of truth, religious bigots and fanatics, as well as workers of darkness who have over the years battled to pull down the Divine Kingdom through blackmail and propaganda; an ungodly step that has rather attracted more members to the Fold, contrary to their objective.
Ordinarily, one may not have responded to the vituperations of Mr. and Mrs. Iburene, but for the fact that a lie often repeated might well soon sound believable even to the originator of the baseless tale.
So, let us take on the issues. Mr. and Mrs. Iburene claimed to have spent 14 years as members of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star, yet they do not know the World headquarters of the Fold. There is no street like Ambrose Street in Calabar, as they claimed. Where then did they meet the Founder and Leader of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star and when were the frivolous promises of miracles made to them?
Mrs. Iburene claimed to have joined the Kingdom as a teenager, and the question is, who introduced her to the Fold and why? Common sense would simply tell one that she may be naturally mischievous. She probably thought that Brotherhood of the Cross and Star were a cult where one can go and acquire some elemental powers to perform magic and now open a church to make money from unsuspecting citizens.
She also claims to have been doing something with the Army, where she was to be flown abroad for training, but she left unceremoniously. If she was in the Nigerian Army and left unceremoniously, was she on AWOL? (Absent without excuse); which should make her a deserter. Is she not wanted by the Army?
Again, she claimed to have been duped. How was she duped? What kind of business did she venture into that she was duped? These are obvious indications of one who desperately wants a short-cut to acquire wealth. And finally, she has opened a Church. Her husband is also in the same church business. We pity unsuspecting Nigerians. This is confession time! They must confess!
Mrs. Iburene claimed that two people came to try the power of Leader Obu and ran out mad. She neither mentioned the names of the people, the circumstances and dates/season of the incident. It is on record that all the people who tried to test the power in Brotherhood eventually accepted the Gospel and got baptized. Prominent among them were Professor Assassu Inyang Ibom; a professor of esoteric mysteries, brother Chukwudi Okakpu, among others. The Father is merciful and the claim is therefore absurd.
She claimed that the King of kings and Lord of lords, His Holiness Olumba Olumba Obu was a carnal Person who had long shown interest in the Father's Throne. The truth is that He is the First begotten Son of the Father and needed not show interest in the Throne, as He is the Heir and rightful owner of the Throne. Even before the creation of the world, it was written of Him. He is taking the glory which the Father promised Him before the foundation of the world. (Hebrews: 3:6). Even in typical physical and conventional setting, going by the African tradition, is the first son not the heir to his father's throne?
The allegation of carnality is an absolute ruse. They could not provide any evidence to substantiate such claims. First, if Iburene were to be true pastors, they would have known that no man is worthy to judge, as Judgement is for God alone to execute. (Mattew 7:1). Who then gave them power to pass Judgement on Leader Obu? Again, if they have ever opened the Holy Bible, they would have seen that even in the days of our Lord Jesus Christ, He lived the life of a normal human being until at the rightful age of 30, before he started his mission fully. Where then lies their pastoral knowledge and wisdom?
They also claimed that Leader Obu went blind, and now dead. May God forgive them. The Holy Father, Leader Olumba Olumba Obu is alive, hale and hearty.
Lovina claimed that “it was the daughter that was very close to her Father and deep in spiritual affairs….At some point, the Kingdom divided into two, in line with the Son and daughter…….”
This simply leaves no one in doubt on where Lovina and her husband are coming from. They are only acting an already written script. Lovina and Enoch Iburene are being used by some faceless malcontents for cheap publicity. At the appropriate time, the whistle shall be blown.
For those interested in knowing the truth, Brotherhood of the Cross and Star is one in the entire Universe. There is no division in the Fold. It is a Divine Spiritual School of Practical Christianity, established by God Himself. It has one Universal Leader, Master, Teacher and Sustainer, Leader Olumba Olumba Obu. His First Begotten Son, His Holiness Olumba Olumba Obu is the Chairman, Head of Administration and Sole signatory of the Kingdom.
Its teachings are centered on love, and love conquers all things. Agents of darkness are fighting with every available arsenal to pull it down. Unfortunately for them, it is a Kingdom that has come to dwell forever, as darkness can never overcome light.
The substance is that: following the Divine Coronation and installation of His First Begotten Son, His Holiness Olumba Olumba Obu as Chairman, BCS Executive Council and Head of Administration by the Father, Leader Olumba Olumba Obu, a few dubious individuals decided to challenge the decision of the leadership of the Kingdom. They looted its treasury and seized some of her Property.
The matter eventually was taken to the Federal High Court in Calabar for adjudication, where they lost out. They also appealed against the ruling of the lower Court and still lost at the appellate Court.
Lovina's husband, Enoch Iburene also claimed to be the pastor of Truth Ministry and lovers of Christ; yet he does not know the difference between truth and lies. He claims that unknown people have been going after their lives since they left Brotherhood. He said Brotherhood members wanted to kidnap them…How could people be after them for over ten years, as they claimed, yet they did not report the matter to security agencies; not even the Police. Do they think that Nigerians do not have common sense?
He claimed that the leadership of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star wanted to take legal steps against them, but dropped the idea because some members of the Fold offered to testify in her favour. This is another criminal lie. They would have tendered an evidence to substantiate their claims. Brotherhood of the Cross and Star does not drag people to Court. The Fold only responds to legal suits, as a responsible entity; though, some members have resolved to take personal legal steps to check the recklessness of people like Iburene, their sponsors and cohorts.
Iburene said members of the Fold neither kill nor eat fish and meat. They are right. True members of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star are pure Vegetarians. Vegetarianism is a spiritual Doctrine that has one hundred percent Biblical backing. (Genesis 1:29 Mark 1:6, Romans 14:21, I Corinthians 8: 13). Even in the health sector, it is no news that Medicine even advices man to feed on fruits and vegetables for healthier living.
Another show of their ignorance about the Scriptures is when they speak of the attack on some Brotherhood members in Ilesha, Osun State several years back. This is an obvious proof of the fact that they do not know God. Even in the Holy Bible, we read about Martyrs. Did the Disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ not pass through persecutions? However, all those that dwell by the sword shall perish by the sword. Galatians 6:7 could guide us.
They described Brotherhood as evil. They claimed they benefited nothing from the Fold, yet, they were healed in Brotherhood; they met and had their marriage blessed in Brotherhood, according to them. What an irony!
According to Iburene, “There was a demarcation between the Supreme Father and the congregation, He does not mix with the people, He only comes out to minister.”
This is indeed outlandish. The Holy Father is seen and felt lavishly every day, both physically and spiritually. He manifests Himself in uncountable places simultaneously. He is everywhere every time. That is why members and those that know Him refer to Him as Omnipresent. He is the most humble Being on earth. He attends to all equally, without segregation. Those who have had personal experiences with Him can attest that the claim is an absolute lie. He receives both groups and individuals in the Vestry. For instance, in 2011 alone, the Muslim Community in Cross River State visited Him physically. The State and Zonal chapters of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) visited Him. The Prince of Zulu Kingdom and 22-time President of South Africa, Prince Buttellezi, and several others visited Him physically and had audience with Him. The visits were covered by the Nigerian media. Both members and non Brotherhood members with different issues also meet with Him on daily basis. Is Iburene in this world at all?
In 2003, Lovina granted an interview to 'Newswatch Magazine', saying that she was seeing lizards, snakes and other strange things; suggesting that she was hallucinating. Undoubtedly, she is still in her illusion. She may avail herself of the wonderful services of a Psychiatric Hospital or come to the Brotherhood of the Cross and Star for spiritual healing.
But, the final show of Mr. and Mrs. Iburene's ignorance is when they speak about the 144,000 Virgins. They said that the role of the Virgins is to fan the Leader while asleep.
For avoidance of doubt, the role of the 144,000 Virgins in Brotherhood of the Cross is in clear conformity with the provisions of the Holy Bible, as recorded in Revelation 14:1-5.
The Virgins are “those who follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth, neither are they defiled and from their mouth are found no guile…”
If one may ask, is it that Brotherhood of the Cross and Star, whose membership includes all the movers and shakers of this world is so poor that it cannot afford the comfort of an air Conditioner or at least a fan for the Leader, if required?
While we await counsel on how to extract necessary remedy from the Nigerian newspaper, we are inclined to register our disgust with the shameful attitude and ``pull them- down- syndrome'' of some news media. That is one of the reasons why a lot of people do not respect the Nigerian media and its practitioners. It is unfortunate that the Vanguard Newspaper allowed itself to be ridiculed with such a false, unconfirmed, malicious and blasphemous report from Ishola Balogun. No efforts were made to contact the leadership of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star for comments; at least, for the sake of balance and accuracy.
No doubt, this latest sponsored attack on the Leader of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star is recklessness taken too far.
The question is, why are we so interested in disparaging innocent people and Organisations without any reasonable proof of wrong doing?
We implore the Nigerian Mass Media practitioners to embrace the ethics of the noble profession of Journalism and operate within the precincts of accuracy, objectivity, patriotism and national development.
Despite Iburene and other such distractions, Brotherhood of the Cross and Star shall continue to grow from strength to strength.
As for Mr. and Mrs. Iburene, one can only hope that they would be bold enough to show their true interest, rather than masquerading as patriots and crusaders of Christ.
Walter Duru is an Abuja-based Media Consultant