Your pastor secretes holy milk.
That is the story being whispered by
everyone in the church—choristers,
ushers, and the women.
They say he is God’s anointed. A man
anointed by God must have all his body
parts and fluids blessed too.
With just a wave of his hands, people fall
in multitudes. When he talks the breeze
ceases and the roof trembles. He
commands the crippled to rise, and they
rise. He lays his fingers on the blind, and
they see. He touches a widow’s sick son,
and he is healed.
Your pastor secretes holy milk.
If a woman has been barren for long, she
is asked to wait behind for special prayers
so that your pastor can minister to her in
That is why every Sunday, women who
are barren give testimonies of what God
has done for them.
“If not for Pastor Samuel, there would be
no baby suckling at my breasts! Praise
You have been attending the church for
four months, which approximates to how
long you have lived in this city.
Saving Grace Incorporated is located in
the heart of the city in a gigantic edifice.
A magnificent sight to behold!
You are attracted to the church because
of the aura that surrounds it. At your new
office everyone talks about it. For every
trendy woman in town, there are three
things in vogue: Blackberry Z10, Saving
Grace Inc and pinging dresses—in that
Your pastor is handsome. His nose is
finely chiseled. His clear white eyeballs
are draped in long eyelashes. His lips are
full and sensuous. His broad shoulders fill
out his designer suits. And when he
doesn’t wear a tie, his 22 carat gold
necklace sparkles in the reflection of the
glass pulpit. A thick gold ring on which is
mounted a cross and a bleeding heart
adorns the finger he uses to swipe the
ipad screen during his sermons.
Every lady in the church love listening to
his melodic voice and basking in the
intense stare from his glistening eyes.
The first time you attended Saving Grace
Incorporated, you fell in love with your
It was not a carnal passion, but deep
reverence, the kind one feels for spiritual
leaders. But now, you cannot remove your
eyes from his face, his suit, his shiny
black shoes and his iPad. You love the
way he walks. In his church, your soul
finally finds rest like a hare thirsting for
water. Your soul yearns for his words.
You feel his gaze lingering over you the
three times you go for offering before the
end of the five hour service.
Now you dream of him on most nights.
You see him standing before the
congregation, holding his iPad and his left
hand resting on the pulpit. In your dream,
his face looks angelic. His black suit and
white starched shirt sparkle like the robe
of Jesus Christ. When he notices you, he
drops the iPad, walks down the aisle to
the pew you are seated and suddenly kiss
you. Sometimes you dream that after
kissing him, he walks down the aisle with
you, people clapping and singing:
Here comes the bride! Parararam !
Here comes the bride! Pararararam ..!
When you wake, you don’t know whether
to pray and bind the evil spirit that put the
dreams into your sleep or to thank God.
Sometimes, you notice wetness beneath
your night gown and throughout the day
you lick your lips and savor his kisses.
In your office, Zainab wonders why you
are always in a daze—one moment,
smiles tug at your lips and after a while
your lips contort in a worrisome pucker.
She calls you the worrying-smiling-lady.
You always talk about Saving Grace Inc.
in the office, telling everyone why they
need to desert their own churches. You
talk to them about Pastor Samuel—how
angelic he is, how divine he is. You tell
them that God has sent him to change
and heal the world of all afflictions. You
recount the number cripples that can walk
because of him, the blind that can see,
and the insane that have been made
You tell them about Alhaji’s wife, a
Muslim converted to Christianity who
attends the Saving Grace church. How she
donated a Murano jeep to Pastor Samuel
and he invited her to a special prayer
session and she conceived. You speak
about her testimony last Sunday and how
she has promised God to sow a seed of a
Lincoln Navigator when she delivers the
baby. Zainab shakes her head, calling you
Pastor Samuel’s messenger.
You eventually convince her to follow you
You are dressed in your new jeans
trouser, the one that Zainab’s brother who
lives in London bought for you. He thinks
that by sending you gifts from London, he
will get you to marry him. You wonder
why men do not realise it when women
do not like them. You enter the church
and heads turn and stare.
You sit with Zainab as she looks around
the large church, admiring the chandeliers
hanging elegantly on the ceiling, the tall
white air-conditioners in all corners of the
church and the large projector-screen on
the wall which Pastor Samuel uses to
teach prosperity and success.
The church is not full yet, but Pastor
Samuel climbs onto the altar, checks on
the microphone, and places his iPad on
the pulpit. He looks up and scans the
congregation. His eyes connect with
yours, and he beckons on you.
“Me?” you whisper as if talking to Zainab.
He says, “Yes, you. Come!”
You walk elegantly to the altar, conscious
of the hundreds of eyes that trail the
movement of your buttocks.
“Can you please help the ladies over there
with the curtain?”
“No problem, sir.” Your mouth quivers.
His eyes lock with yours. You look down,
and your eyes descend on his well
polished shoes. His cologne wafts into
your nostrils. You stare at the curly hairs
on the back of his palm.
You turn to go and he says, “Excuse me!”
“Sir?” You turn.
“Are you alright?”
“Yes, Pastor. I am fine, thank you.”
“Please see me after service.”
“ Ermm … yes, Pastor.”
You move to the side of the altar where
some young ladies are having some
difficulties drawing the curtains. As you
lift the first curtain into a bunch and tie it
into a knot, a beautiful lady, average in
height, walks out from the vestry and sits
at the end of the altar. She is Mummy
Ada, the pastor’s wife. You gape at her—
her head-tie, her long skirt, her blouse,
and her beautiful make-up. You are
jealous as you imagine her in bed with
After service, you walk to the back of the
church with Zainab. There are a lot of
young girls waiting to see Pastor Samuel.
There are some rich men and women too.
Your pastor is standing with his wife. She
shakes hands with everyone who comes
close to her husband and talks briefly
with them. When some hand envelopes to
your pastor, she collects them and smiles.
Sometimes, your pastor steps aside
shortly to discuss with a person who has
come to see him and then rejoins his
wife. So when it is your turn, he says to
“Excuse me, Sugar.” He takes your hand
and steps some feet away from his wife.
“My name is Pastor Samuel. I am the
Senior pastor here.”
His alluring eyes search your face. So you
look away and say: “My name is
Blessing.” He smiles.
‘You have a nice name. What do you do?’
“I am a call centre attendant for MTN. I
am new in Lagos.”
“You have a nice work. How long have
you been in this city?”
“Four months, sir.”
“Lagos corrupts good girls—which is why
I am glad that you are always in the
church. I see you here every Sunday.’
“Oh, Pastor. Out of your over one
thousand-member congregation, you
manage to notice me?’
“Yes of course–”
“You wanted to see me, sir?” you ask,
because you are conscious of his wife,
who must be wondering what he was
discussing with you. Your body is hot
inside already and you cannot remove
your eyes away from his long fingersas
they clutched his iPad.
“What do you do every Wednesday? We
hold special prayer session for young
people. Perhaps you may like to come?”
“I will be delighted. I have been meaning
to come for some time.”
“See you next Wednesday. And dress just
the way you look today. Exquisite.” He
whispers. He walks back to his wife. You
turn and say “Good bye, Mummy’ to his
wife, at which point she approaches you.
You wonder what she wants with you.
“I love your top,” she says.
“Thank you, Ma.” You tell her your name,
and she asks if you can come to their
house on Tuesday. She was hosting a few
business partners and would love for you
to help her prepare food.
“I will be delighted to help, Ma,” you say.
It is an opportunity to meet with the
pastor again. By then your heart is
thudding like your mother’s pestle against
“Give me your number, and I will text you
our address.” You give her your mobile
phone number and leave with Zainab.
“What were you discussing with that
man?,” Zainab probes on the way home.
“He is not a man. He is the Pastor,” you
snap at her.
“And the Pastor is not a man?
“He is, but you shouldn’t have said that
man. You should have said ‘what were
you discussing with the pastor’” Haba!’
Zainab laughs aloud. “Okay, now tell me,
what were you discussing with your
“Nothing. He thanked me for helping out
in the church with the curtains. He said I
should always come for the Wednesday
prayer sessions for young people.”
Zainab is quiet for a while. You both
arrive at the main road and are about to
hail a taxi when Zanaib ask, “Okay o. So
will you attend the Wednesday prayer
“Oh yes, and you must come with me.
Zainab says nothing. The taxi drops you
off at your house, not very far from the
church and leaves with Zainab. As you
unlock your door, you get a text message
from her. It says: Be careful with Pastor
That Sunday, you prepare ofe akwu and
play Asa’s The Way I feel several times in
your self-contained room-and-parlor.
You cannot sleep that afternoon because
his image has fogged your head like
Two months have passed since the day
he spoke to you after church. And you
have not missed a Wednesday prayer
In town, people still talk about Pastor
Samuel. They mention the number of girls
that have aborted pregnancies for him,
and how they cannot talk because he
pays them off. You are convince yourself
that it is not true. If it were true, he would
have made sexual advances at you on
one of the several visits you have paid his
Each time you visit Zainab, you talk
nonstop about Pastor Samuel, but she
retells a tale she heard in a hair salon
about his escapades with women. She
tells you that sometimes he uses his
connection to get visas for his female
friends and fly them to London or Canada
or Romania for a day or two, on his short
holidays or meetings which the church
finances. At night you remember Zainab
and all the people gossiping with your
pastor’s name in your prayers.
It is another Wednesday, and you are
surprised that your pastor has asked one
of his junior pastors to call you. You meet
him at the back of the church, and he is
talking and going to his car at the same
time. When he gets to his car he stops.
“You are really a child of God. I see that
you have found a special place in the
heart of God already.”
“Why do you say so?”
“The holy ghost has ministered to me
about you. You are always at the church
on Sundays and on Wednesdays. I like
that. That is faith at work. And most times
you help out in arranging things in the
church. I am pleased with you. You are
doing God’s work, and he has His
blessings in folds reserved for you.’
“Thank you, Pastor.’
He unlocks his car. “Now tell me, what
troubles your heart? Yesterday I saw you
in my dreams, the fourth time since the
last time we talked.” You raise your head
in astonishment and stare at his
handsome face. His eyes sparkles. You
look at the sprouts of hair on his chin.
“I see you in my dreams too, sir.”
“Oh!” he looks surprised.
He asks you to enter the car, you hurriedly
do so, turning to look around to ensure
that no one sees you as you go into the
pastor’s car. As soon as you settle into
the cosy leather seat of the BMW, he
places his hairy hand on your lap and you
shiver. You recall the stories you have
heard about his blessed hand. Images of
those times he’d placed his hand on the
blind and their eyes opened rush into your
head and you swallow saliva.
“You see me in your dreams?”
“Yes, Pastor… but I don’t mean it that
“Not to worry, my dear sister Blessing,”
he turns his face to you. “God is talking to
you. God is telling you to open your heart
for the blessings that have been blocked
from you for years by the kingdom of the
You open your mouth to speak but he
removes his hand and starts the car and
drive out of the church slowly. You
unconsciously stretch your skirt to cover
your laps very well.
When the car eases into the Lagos traffic,
he says, “Sister Blessing. You are
beautiful, you know that?”
“Thank you, Pastor.”
“Oh, Blessing. Why don’t you call me
Samuel. Always, call me Samuel. That is
what my friends call me. Or are you not
“I am your friend, Pastor.”
“Samuel,” you respond. Both of you
You find yourself giving him the direction
to your house and when the car stops in
front of your house. He says to you,
“What food did you cook?”
“Pastor, I have vegetable soup in my
“I am famished.” He alights from the car
and you find yourself walking into the
building and opening the door of your
apartment for him. Once inside, he grabs
you swiftly to your surprise and kisses
you so tenderly on the lips.
“Pastor,” you moan as his lips cover
yours. The room is very dark as you have
not touched the switch. His hands are on
your waist, moving down to your large
buttocks. He presses himself so tight
against you and suffocates you with his
kisses. You hit him on the shoulder lightly
as you call, “Pastor… Pastor…”
He lowers you on the rug and lies on top
of you. His hand finds its way down your
blouse, and he undoes your buttons. He
finds your right breast and takes your
n—-e into his mouth. You moan.
“Oh God… Oh God…” you call, and even
though it is very dark, you see an angel
on your roof. You are sure.
When you see the angel, you close your
eyes and kiss him back fervently. He
unbuckles his belt with one hand and
unhooks your bra with the other.
“Pastor, no!” you call as the image of his
wife, who is your friend flashes in your
mind. You use your two hands to cover
“Pastor… this is a sin,” you stutter.
“Who said so? What do you know about
“Yes. There are a lot of portions of the
bible that were deleted to brainwash
Christians. Haven’t you heard the story
He laughs a little quietly.
“Don’t you know about Emperor
Constantine and what he did with the
bible and Christianity?”
“I don’t know, Pastor.”
“Now listen to me, I am your pastor. I
cannot lead you into sin or into what will
lead you to eternal condemnation. We are
about to make love, the greatest gift God
gave to mankind. Through love, the world
is replenished. Why do you think God
made sex the sweetest thing on earth?
And we are His children and He loves us.
Do you think God would deny mankind of
You hesitate. “No, Pastor,” your voice
crackles. “But it is meant for married
“That definition was giving by humans.
Who knows God’s heart? No one, the
bible tells us. How do we know that God
did not sanction it? Was it not man that
wrote the bible? I cannot deceive you–”
“What about your wife, sir?”
“My wife? Some people have found favor
in the sight of the Lord, you, my wife and
a few others. And–”
“Do you have sex with others?”
“Blessing, I am a Pastor. When I say
finding favor, I mean God’s blessings. I
pray for people and they receive
blessings. I lay my hands on them. If I like
you I lay my hands on you. My wife is a
very successful woman because I don’t
just lay my hands on her, but make love
to her. And each time I see you in my
dreams, God tells me to reach out to you.
This last one, I saw us making love, and I
knew you needed his blessings, especially
as you need to make a choice of a good
husband and to know if that guy in
London is the best husband for you.”
You tremble. You wonder how he got to
know about Zainab’s brother.
“How did you know, sir?”
He kisses your lips again. “Do you doubt
“Then, allow this holy milk to quench your
thirst for blessings.”
His lips find your neck. Tears trickle down
your cheeks. You moan.
It has been going on for three months
now. On his way to midnight prayers at
the church, he stops by your apartment
and often stays until 11pm.
You cook Jollof rice with a lot of pepper.
Other times, you prepare vegetable soup
with a lot of kpomo and gizzard. He
showers in your bathroom and applies his
cologne now permanently placed at your
Each time he leaves, you curl yourself
into a ball and weep, half out of
frustration and half out of love. You
consider putting an end to the affair.
There is this nagging feeling that you are
committing a huge sin. But you are in love
with him. Besides, who is to say that sex
with Pastor Samuel has nothing to do
with the blessings pouring into your life?
A month after he came to your apartment
and gave you his holy milk, you were
promoted at work.
On a Friday, he enters without knocking
because the door is open. Your pot of rice
is simmering on the fire in your little
kitchen. He sits with you on the couch,
and you help him unbutton his shirt as
you tell him about your day. He talks
about the new branch he is establishing
in Abakaliki. The TV is on, and the music
video for Davido’s Aye is playing on
Channel O. He kisses your lips and
prevents you from talking as you try to
explain why you did not come to see his
“Wait, Samuel. I was telling you that I
didn’t bring Madam’s new micro SIM-
card today as I’d promised her. I forgot.
Now, she cannot make calls because of
“Don’t worry, Sugar. I will take it to her.”
“What? So where will you tell her you met
me. There is no midnight prayer at the
“Yes, I told her I was going to visit a
church member whose wife is sick at
Apapa. I could tell her I passed by the
church and saw you.”
He begins to kiss you again and you raise
your hand as he removes your night
gown. You unbuckle his trouser, and he
steps out of them. A few minutes after he
has entered you, the door opens just at
the same time that you hear a knock.
Pastor Samuel halts. You turn and both of
your eyes behold the chocolate-
complexioned woman standing by the
door. Her mouth is wide agape. Her eyes
When his wife runs out of the apartment,
he reluctantly dresses up without a word
and leaves. You sit on the couch, naked,
tears running down the sides of your
Just then you recall that you have not
seen your monthly flow for over a month.