As soon as I finished the Lord’s Prayer and Hail Mary,s there was nothing else I could remember.
I opened the Doctrine book I had purchased at the Bom Jesus do Monte and read from it. It felt so good to be able to pray again.
The events of the past few years had taken me away from God.
In the past few years, especially as soon as I left Nigeria, I started doubting the existence of God. It escalated as soon as I saw the level of lives people lived over there in Germany.
All those things we learnt about Heaven back in Africa was staring right there in front of me;
Humans playing with animals,
baskets full of fruits,
green and very clean environments,
Perfect Social and Transport System,
happy people etc.
The worst of it all was that the Germans hardly go to Church. The first time I went to a Church in Eisenhuttenstadt Germany, I found only the very old Germans in the Church. None of them was less than 80 years.
I guessed the Church was a kind of Sanctuary for them, not a place to waste youthful lives. The only young people at the Church there was Just me and one other Ugandan lady who had gone there with me.
How could that be. Unless Germany was the Heaven we were told that existed, I felt no more reason to go to Church.
It had remained that way ever since until that very moment I saw myself at the Bom Jesus Cathedral.
” Hail Mary, Full of Grace, The Lord is with thee, Blessed art though amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb Jesus” I prayed.
I got absorbed into the Prayers and lost myself into it.
After the first decade of ”10 Hail Mary” I said a little more prayers and it was ” Hail Mary” all over again.
While I prayed, I wondered why the Catholics had to adopt that style of Prayers. Why would we say over ”100 Hail Mary” in just one round of Rosary.
It was boring to me but we were also told to have faith. Blessed are those who believe without seeing.
” Faith” A supernatural gift of God which enables us to believe without doubt, what God has revealed. – Christian Doctrine.
”Faith” Another one of those ropes that tied us around the necks, legs, minds and never allowed us to think freely.- Me.
How could you believe what you don’t know, what you have never heard or seen just because a Pastor or Priest said so.
How can you even identify a truthful Priest? How how how.
Someone divided the Red Sea with just a stroke of a stick- Believe with Faith or go to hell.
The Other guy spent Three or four days in the belly of the fish – Believe it or go to hell.
There was the Other guy who walked on water – Believe it or go to hell.
There was no way around it except if you accept that one that walked on water.
You can forget about the other ones, its safe. Just accept that one that walked on water and you are saved.
Yes, saved from Sins, such as Jack Daniels, Drugs, adultery, fornication, lies, etc etc.
But above all, saved from sex.
Sxs, the sweetest thing on earth was also banned. Don’t go there or you will go to hell.
Oh! I remember there was a condition attached to sex. ” You must marry before you try it” Yes apart from that, You were bound for hell; Somewhere where it was all fire and no water, no food but you will survive anyway and keep burning forever. You will not be allowed to die, that God who loved you so much will not allow you to die in hell. He will make sure that you remained alive in hell so that you will burn forever..
Somehow, all those things happened in a Book. A holy book that was packaged thousands of years ago.
There was another version packaged for the Muslims too. In their own version, many virgins were waiting for them in their own Heaven if they kill the infidels on Earth.
Ah! I was an infidel. My head in exchange for Virgins.
One group invaded us from Arabia Deserts while the other ones invaded us from Europe. No where to run to.
Our own Gods were stolen and burnt. We had found another God who wasn’t interested in Chickens and yams and money.
Just give those things to the priests and Pastors and Prophets, they knew how to give it to God. If you give it to God by yourself, He will not accept it.
Somehow those magical things that happened in those two books can no longer happen in our time. The human beings had decided to indulge in Sins and turned their backs against God.
God had decided to abandon us BUT he loves us; Yes he loves you.
He loved Jennifer yet allowed her to be transported to Portugal to sleep with men for money.
Maybe it was because she was born in sin.
He also loved Madam Grace who committed that sin.
He loves giving us second chances to repent.
Ah! He rescued Jennifer through me, another sinner who had sold drugs to people in Germany. Or maybe drugs were not sins.
Those doubts that had stopped me from attending Churches had crept in again while I was Praying in my Room in Braga.
My mind had been divided between doubts and beliefs and faith and miracles and sins etc. I couldn’t concentrate anymore. Why couldn’t my mind stay in one place? Was I a devil or was I a special person.
I paused the prayers midway and called Jennifer.
” Where are you” I said as soon as she picked the call.
”I am at the reception downstairs, I don’t know where to go” she said.
” Wait for me, I will be there in a minute” I said.
We left our apartment building and walked down to the Immaculate Conception avenue.
There was a liquor store managed by a middle aged Morrocan man. He was a Muslim, Another confused and brainwashed African like me. His Religion was against alcoholic.
What was he doing selling it to people?
” Thou shall not Judge” another rope on our minds.
I bought a bottle of Hennessy VSOP and called a taxi.
I asked the driver if there was any close beach around Braga, he said there was one at VIANA DO CASTELO and APULIA but was about 30km away from Braga.
” Which one is the closest” I said.
” APULIA” he answered.
” Take us to APULIA”