The daughter of the Nigerian ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago testified to being healed and began preaching at the opening of the Benny Hinn three-day crusade yesterday.
Eleven-year-old Philomena told the congregation of approximately 30,000 people gathered at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain, that she felt a spiritual “touch” and was healed of sickle cell anaemia. She fell to the ground, assisted by catchers, under the “anointing” and remained there for approximately 20 minutes.
Hinn, dressed in his trademark white suit, said that he had never seen anything like it and did not want to touch her as it would “grieve the Holy Spirit”.
Her parents, ambassador Edward Arthur Agbe and his wife, looked on nervously as their daughter shook on the platform but Hinn told them not to worry as it was the power of God.
When Philomena finally stood up she indicated that she wanted to say something to the audience.
She said that her healing was a sign that her prayers two years ago to become a preacher had been answered.
She then began exhorting the audience that God loved them all and they would be healed if they only believed.
She stressed that they should read the Bible as it was the answer to all their problems and that adults, though they think they know everything, should listen to children as God could use them. As she spoke the audience looked on intently while some worshippers praised the Lord.
“This is a message to the children of the nation,” said one woman.
The young girl was one of a small group of people testifying of their healings. A Presbyterian pastor, who said he was healed of a back condition, tore off his brace and walked around the platform. One elderly man said he was healed of walking with a limp and jumped and danced around the stage.
Hinn took the old man’s walking stick and threw it away, telling him he would not need it anymore.
“The renowned healing evangelist has once again touched the land of Trinidad and Tobago and the presence of God was truly felt,” said 20-year-old Alexis Brown, who came from Jamaica for the crusade.
He added: “The people came with expectancy and the atmosphere was charged with hope and faith.”
The crusade began with praise and worship from the massive choir dressed in blue and white. Gospel singer Judy Jacobs also made an appearance and sang her hit “Days of Elijah”. Also in attendance was former president Arthur NR Robinson.
The message presented by Pastor Benny, as he is affectionately known, was not from a set passage of Scripture but various parts in the gospel when Jesus healed all the sick people, specifically those who had “touched” him by their faith. He stressed greatly that he knew that Jesus was willing to heal all and also gave testimonies of healings during his 30 years of ministry.
Hinn said that hundreds of people had been healed at last evening’s crusade but ended the testimonies after the Nigerian ambassador’s daughter who, he announced, will be joining him on the platform. He asked the people who had been healed to return and testify at the crusade today which will begin at 5 p.m.