GUILD OF STEWARDS

- Olumide Ajomale

I joined the church  in 1982, fresh as a young graduate from the United Kingdom. At various times, I had worshipped at St. Jude’s Ebute-Metta and the Chapel of the Healing Cross (at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital). I came back to meet my parents worshipping at the AVMC. My mother, Otunba (Mrs.) Deborah M. Ajomale-Olubodun still worships here today.

 

I was an ordinary worshipper for a few weeks but then, that had to be only for a while because right from my secondary school days, I had always been active as a chorister. I wanted to join the AVMC Choir but could not, because as a young graduate that had just been employed, I needed to settle down to my job. So I joined the Guild of Stewards in the same year - 1982. 

 

Then, the church was a smaller unit, and we virtually knew ourselves. In the Guild, I met some members who inspired many of us - people like Mrs. Alabi, Dr. Plumptre and Mr. Yemi Martins.

 

I had contemporaries such as Mrs. Bimbo Soyinka. We joined at the same time. Of course I went through the rudiments of learning the ropes, but began to take responsibility quite early. I became the 

easier. We now close much earlier.

 

As members of the Guild, we face the task of contending with the temperament of different parishioners and on this we need the Grace of God to get us through. On the average however, I would say that the parishioners here are more discerning and generally well-behaved. You have a few cases of some members removing the ropes to enter the church when they should not, or some sitting where you don’t want them to sit. A few cross the aisle when they are not supposed to. In rare cases, people say unholy things. But by and large, this is a congregation that has a very high mark in adhering to the rules that govern behaviour in the church. The ambience of the church also promotes conformity. People have been very nice in helping us to do our jobs. 

 

At Presently, we have about 70 active members of the Guild. Some have temporarily relocated. Some are students. Some are very busy. We hardly have cases of nonchalant members. I would say that most people who opt to be stewards are those who are committed to giving up their time. The AVMCC Guild of Stewards attracts people from all walks of life —professionals, business persons, males, females, old and young. We have a 72-year-old as a member. A few members are in their twenties. Though

we have members from various tribes in Nigeria.

 

We have not had any major challenge since I joined the Guild. The few challenges have been very pleasant ones. One has had the opportunity of meeting very important people from all over the world.

 

Members of the Cathedral’s stewards Guild have also played leading roles in the Diocesan Guild of Stewards. Two of us have been Presidents of the Diocesan Guild of Stewards, the current President, being Engr. Kehinde Akinola. I am a past President.

 

I think the Guild has become a very useful arm of the church’s administration. It plays a prominent role in worship administration. In these past 50 years, with the kind of leadership we have had, we have been actively part of the church’s administration. We have been part of the success —the high standards, the orderliness of the church service.

 

In the next 50 years, we can only hope to surpass the achievements that have been made. It can only get better. I trust members to become more committed and continually give the vital support that the cathedral needs.

In The Lord’s Service