Iyogho didn’t need anyone to tell her that something was not right. She had noticed her husband’s strange behaviour especially when they talked about church. She had no doubt that her husband loved God and love to serve Him. That was a major reason she agreed to marry him in the first place. Besides the fact that her choice of husband had to be handsome and hardworking, he had to be one who feared God and goes to church regularly. But lately he had been looking more worried than ever. They had even stopped praying together or talking late into the night as they usually did.
All attempts to talk to him and find out what the matter could be had been futile so she prayed for him instead. If things got worse, she planned to go talk to his father. A thought had crossed her mind on what she suspected might be the reason; why he was withdrawn and looked depressed. It could be about the ordination. Ovie had boasted to Iyogho that he was sure he was going to be ordained; with just two days to the ordination rumour had gone round the church members of those that will be ordained on Sunday and no one had mentioned her husband’s name as one of those to be ordained. It was not an issue Iyogho felt should be her husband’s worry. It simply meant that God didn’t want him to be a pastor. At least not yet.
She needed to talk to someone who would make her feel better.
Pastor Ejiro noticed the urgency in Iyogho’s voice as he clutched the receiver to his ear straining to hear her properly. He imagined she may even be crying but didn’t want him to know. Things haven’t been too smooth between her and Tega and he wasn’t sure what it was about. He preferred to be told than him asking. It may just be some family issue that did not require external interference.
“Iyogho, can’t you talk to me about it on phone? Are you okay?” He was truly concerned and she knew it. Iyogho was like his biological sister and he cared so much for her. “I mean if it is this urgent, go ahead and talk to me.” The more he waited for her to speak up the more he was getting impatient.
“Pastor Ejiro, I errrr…”
Most members prefered to call him Pastor Ejiro, he was a very nice man and one who truly feared God. Iyogho guessed he could be about sixty years old, about the same age her father died. The rest of his family lived in Ghana including his mother who is from Warri where he was born.
“Are you okay? What about your husband? Can I…” Pastor Ejiro understood the silence immediately. It was going to be something private and she had company.
“I will talk to you about it tomorrow after the evening service.” She said in a whisper. Ovie had just entered and she didn’t want him to know that she was talking with someone from the Redemption church.
Pastor Mensah refused the money offered him even when Tega promised to increase it to eight hundred thousand naira. Ovie was highly disappointed while Tega consoled him that there can still be a way to get the position. With every tick of the clock, members of the Redemption Church anticipated when the names of the new pastors will be read to the congregation. Members were seen dropping by the noticeboard nearly every hour to check on the latest information on the ordination. Some who Daddy had specifically handpicked had gone ahead to organise aso-ebi for their family members to wear during the evening celebration service.
Iyogho knew nothing about her husband’s extreme ambition to become a pastor until he started behaving strangely and overheard one of his discussions with Tega.
On the Sunday of the ordination, he was late for the service and sat behind the pew where no one noticed he was there. He left before the ceremony was over. He made up his mind to seriously consider the option Tega suggested to him. To start his own church.
Ovie knew that starting a church would not be as easy as Tega put it especially since he did not have a place where the worshippers will gather. That place had to be somewhere far from the Redemption church, a place where he was not known.
That was the issue Iyogho planned to discuss with Pastor Ejiro. Ovie had expressed to her after that Sunday service of how displeased he was for not been ordained. He mentioned that they would stop attending the church because they were going to start attending another church.