•ABUJA Female Bishop, Rev. Mrs. TINA BAWA
Rev. Mrs. Tina Bawa is one of the very few female bishops in Nigeria. She is very popular in Abuja And she is married to a business magnate, Dr Godfrey Baw Shitgrum, (MON). She is the founder of the Tina Bawa Ministries. She is a seasoned Christian homemaking mentor and passionate intercessor with unique prophetic gifting and calling to the woman.
She was called into ministry in 1999. Since then, she has grown remarkably as a conference speaker, leader and author. Her largest women Conference in Abuja which began in 2001 has become reputable for building the capacity and orientating the values of the modern Christian woman. An experienced teacher and leader, she has authored 7 books including the best-selling cover, ‘The Extraordinary Woman’.
She coordinates the organization, Nigeria Woman Awake (NIWA). The Gathering of Deborah which she began in 1999 as her entry into the ministry has kept the fire of intercession burning amongst women at the community level. She is a certified member of the Canadian Institute of Christian Counselors (CICC). She obtained her pastoral degree from Pan African Christian University, Abuja. She is a Business and Management Study Graduate and a qualified Microsoft System Engineer (M.C.S.E). Alongside Ministry, Rev. Tina Bawa is a successful entrepreneur and businesswoman. She is the Vice President of a highly successful shipping and logistics company, Duncan Group of Companies. She is happily married for 25 years. The marriage is blessed with 3 biological children and an adopted daughter. This amazing woman who is sold out for Christ had a divine encounter with Late Bishop Idahosa on an aircraft and that was what changed her spiritual life and took it to another level.
This pretty woman was at the just concluded ARISE WOMEN CONFERENCE at 10 in Lagos and she was part of the ministers who churned out God’s words to all attendees. She spoke to the Arise Media Team on how she started her ministry, her marriage and role in empowering women.
How did you come into full time ministry?
I was called into active Ministry in 1999 when I began the Holy Ghost Women Prayer Ministry, which later grew to become Tina Bawa Ministries International in 2001 as a broader and a more impactful ministry.
I always had women come to my house for various reasons then, and at a point, I encouraged them we should start praying instead of the usual chats and complaining about one thing or the other, so we started praying in my living room and God began to broaden the vision. What was intended as a casual home prayer meeting, turned out as an unusual experience with the manifestation of the gifts of Spirit, which I did not even know I had. To the glory of God, there were testimonies of deliverance, healings, restoration of broken homes and relationships, barren women receiving the fruit of the womb and several others. In most cases, I must confess, I was equally shocked by these miracles. Quickly, the news spread among women, and my house became a prayer mountain. Every morning, some women would wait in my house for me to pray with them. At this point, I knew I could not run away. So I had to organise it properly, otherwise, it will disrupt my other personal endeavours.
So, we fixed Thursday for the prayer meetings. This was how the Gathering of Deborah, an interdenominational intercessory ministry began in my house. From praying for ourselves, we began to organise special prayers for our communities and the nation. In year the 2000, at the 1st year Anniversary and Conference held in the Lagos Travel Inn Ikeja, Lagos, I was officially prayed for and commissioned into ministry by the laying of hands by Pastor (Mrs.) Nike Adeyemi, Founder, Real Woman Foundation and Co-Senior Pastor, Day Star Christian Center, Lagos. As these women kept coming, they did not only come for prayers, they also came with financial needs for their family, children and loved ones. Though I did not have much, I could not turn them away. After prayers, most times, I would feel bad to let them go back home on empty stomach to an empty house. Based on the growing needs of the women, I and a few of the other women with the means decided to form the Women of Compassion.
The sole aim of the group was to cater for the needy amongst us, since I could not do it alone. Gradually, we began to extend our care to vulnerable children and women outside our domain. Apart from prayers and showing compassion, I also discovered that most of these women needed counselling and mentoring. This was what led to the Annual Extraordinary Woman conference in 2001. The essence was to bring reputable women ministers in the faith together to teach other women with the goal to become better women, wives and mothers. As a counsellor, I discovered that what women needed the most was knowledge. The Extraordinary Woman Conference provided us the means to empower women with the knowledge they needed to become fulfilled in every area of their lives.
Did you have any inkling that you would become a minister of God in your early years?
I grew up from a very humble family background. My father was a soldier and so we moved with him everywhere as he was transferred to from one part of the country to another. Based on the limitations of my family background, I did not have the luxury at an early age of nursing a big ambition, and if I ever had any ambition, becoming a minister would have been the last on my list. This is because I grew up with my parents in the Methodist Church where men mainly dominated the clergy. I was saved at a very young age; my mother being a prayerful woman, led me to Christ as a child during one of our family’s morning and evening devotions. From that time on, I chose to be different and sought God the more for myself. I had an inherent love for God, and a passion to help people. I could not look away whenever I see an older person struggling with a task or load. I always made myself useful and available to help every time the need arises. This endeared me to my parents and neighbours who always had a prayer for me for being so useful. Service was my religion as a child. After my secondary school education in 1985, I became one of the cabin crew with the then’ Airlines where I had privilege to host the Late Archbishop Benson A. Idahosa of blessed memory several times onboard our flight. On one of those flights, he laid hands on me, prayed and blessed me because of how I reverenced him anytime he is on my flight, and from that day, my spiritual life took another dimension.
What keeps you inspired?
If there is anything that played a major role in my entry into ministry, it is the testimonies of the women who were part of my early prayer ministry, the Gathering of Deborah. As the testimonies grew, so did my zeal to yield myself more and more to the service of the kingdom. Added to my inspiration were the several testimonies from the participants in our Annual Extraordinary Woman Conference. My passion was simply to serve. Till date, what has kept me in ministry in the face of several challenges, is the testimonies of others. For me, I am fully satisfied, contented and humbled to be the medium through which God is blessing His children.
How do you provide succor from Tina Bawa Ministries to women and children in the north battling with terrorism?
Having begun in Lagos, in 2003, I moved to join my Husband in Abuja. Though the Gathering of Deborah continued in my absence in Lagos, the passion for ministry and to see women liberated, empowered and fulfilled was like fire shut up in my bones, I could not rest. Not long, I began again in Abuja. In no distant time, the Abuja Women Prayer. Ministry under the auspices of Tina Bawa Ministries caught on, and took root among women in the capital city. Once more, I introduced my passion for the vulnerable, under the platform of Women of Compassion to the members of the Abuja fellowship and they all bought into it. As people began to volunteer, we established the Tina Bawa Ministries Free Medical Outreach team. Together, we identified the needy and underserved communities, with little or no medical access and reached out to them through our team of volunteer medical personnel. Our strategic aim was to preach Jesus to the people. We also visit the marketplace to identify women in petty trade business to give them additional capital to expand their business, while showing them the way of the Cross. Since we were already in the charity sector, when the issue of IDPs started due to the activities of Boko Haram in the North East Nigeria, we could not look away. We organised ourselves to provide medical interventions for IDP Camps and as well as food and relief materials.
Briefly tell us your background?
I was born on June 9, 1968 in Lagos to the family of Late Pa John Ebute Abah and Mama Angelina Abah OP) both of Otukpa, Ogbadibo Local Government Area of Benue State. I am the help-meet to Dr. Godfrey Bawa Shitgurum, MON, to whom I have been happily married for the past 25 years. The marriage is blessed with three lovely boys, this is my first ministry. I had my Primary School education from the Army Children School, Minna Niger State and LG EA Primary School, Agbaha, Otukpa, Benue State, from 1975 to 1980; I attended Otukpa Community Secondary School where I obtained my West African Examination Council (WAEC) certificate. I had my first Aviation Certificate Training at the School of Flight Attendants, Ikeja, Lagos, on Air Ticketing and Reservation in 1986 and my second Aviation Certification from the NNA Training School Ikeja, Lagos in 1989. I proceeded to the Federal Polytechnic, Bauchi, where I obtained an Ordinary National Diploma (OND) in Business Administration and Management from 1989 to 1991. I then had my third Aviation Certification from the Aer Lingus Aviation Training School, Ireland, Dublin in 1992. I got certified as a Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) in 2000. I also had the privilege of studying psychotherapy and counselling at the Canadian Institute of Christian Counsellors (CICC) from 2001 to 2002 where I was awarded the Order Pastoral Counsellor. I also attended the Pan-African Christian University, Abuja from 2003 to 2004. I went further to obtain a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Business Administration and Management at Dorben Polytechnic, Abuja from 2006 to 2007.
What has been your work experience before you went into full time ministry?
I started out as a Cabin Crew with the defunct Okada Airline Limited, from 1985 – 1994. Then I started my first company in 1996 called SHITLONG NIGERIA LIMITED, a trading, manufacturing, construction and general contractor company. I am also the VICE PRESIDENT, DUNCAN GROUP OF COMPANIES, a successful shipping and logistics company, based in Lagos.
Bawa Ministries International began in 1999 and since then I have been sold out to the work of God and to humanity. In recognition of my services in the para-church sector, I was ordained into the office of a Bishop by the highly respected College of Bishops of the International Communion of Charismatic Churches (ICCC) in September 2017 in a programme officiated by the Prelate, Archbishop Kirby Clements and the 2nd Prelate, Archbishop Margaret Benson-Idahosa. As part of the several expressions of my passion in Ministry, I coordinate the Gathering of Deborah, Nigeria Women Arise (NIWA), The Compassionate Women, and The Home Finishing Academy (HOFA).
I also started the Woman, Dare to Dream Foundation in 2015. I sit on the board of various companies, institutions and NGOs like Peter Bawa &