My name is Paddy Anyatonwu
I am from Umuosi, Okporo Ahaba, Isiala Ngwa South LGA in Abia State.
I was initiated into the Order of the Catholic Church in 1960’s.
My father was a Headmaster, Special Class.
Being the first son of a teacher, life was restricted.
You are not allowed to do many things your mates freely did.
He wanted to clone me.
But, while preparing for JAMB in 1988, I came across some books at my Uncle’s house.
He never allowed anyone to touch those books, but unknown to him, I have read most of them.
One day and at a dinner table, I asked him, “Dede, in your experience, show me signs of why you believe in God”?
He was shocked and eyed fiercely.
“This boy, what have you been reading”, he thundered.
With confidence I never knew where I manufactured it from, I said, “your books of course”.
Suffice it to say that most of the books I read there were not sold in the open market.
You see, the Law of Compensation punished me severely.
I failed JAMB because I never read instead, I was engrossed in other books.
One day, I went to church and the Priest was not making sense to me.
I wanted to ask questions, but I was told that it was not allowed.
The more books I read, the more I wanted to ask questions.
Unfortunately for me, those I thought should know were all believers.
I was admonished to stop asking ‘unnecessary’ questions, but to believe.
They always tell me that “blessed are those who did not see but believed”.
After my encounter with a priest of 30 years in the priesthood, I realized that my church was a mind prison.
My concern was that I didn’t want to be like them that believed everything, but I wanted to know why I should believe.
One day, my Bishop summoned me.
To be continued.