Inspiring Story of “Iron Lady” Muniba Mazari

19 07 2019

Sometimes even to live is an act of courage. 20 yro Muniba Masari’s life was shattered by a car accident when her husband who was driving fell asleep and the car fell into the ditch. Though he managed to jump out and save himself, she sustained lots of injuries:  fractured wrist, collar bone and rib cage; because of the rib cage injury, her lungs and liver where badly injured. She couldn’t breath, she had lost urine and bowel control. To add to that, her backbone where completely crushed. She was paralyzed for the rest of her life.

Two and half months in hospital and multiple surgeries later, the doctor said she will never walk or have a child again.

She was devastated and asked her mother, “Why me. Why am I even alive?”

Her mother said to her, “This too shall pass. God has a plan for you; I don’t know what it is.”

Those magical words set Muniba’s heart afire. She had always wanted to be an artist, and though the doctors said she could no longer use her hands, she asked her brothers to bring her canvas, and when they brought them, she did her first painting inside the hospital and that began her process of recovery.

When she was discharged, her doctors told her to lie down straight on her bed for 2 yrs.

“That was when”, she said, “I realized how lucky people were who could walk around, go outside, and they don’t even know it” She decided she was going to help others to know how lucky they were.

Her first step was to liberate herself from her fears. So she took a paper and jotted down all her fears.

Her biggest fear was losing her husband, divorce. She was 18yro when she got married to the man her father chose. It was never a happy marriage. Her husband had survived the accident unscathed and scorned her because of her condition and was having an affair with another woman.

 “I was clinging on to this person who didn’t want me, Muniba said, and from that day, I decided to liberate him, to set him free.”

But in so doing, she set herself free also, from worries.

Perhaps, this was what St. Josemaria meant when he wrote “Is it not true that as soon as you cease to be afraid of the Cross, of what people call the cross, when you set your will to accept the Will of God, then you find happiness, and all your worries, all your sufferings, physical or moral, pass away?”

 “In fact”, Muniba continued, “I was so free that on the day that I heard that he was getting married again, I sent him a text saying congratulations, I am happy for you, and he knows that I pray for him today.”

Unawares, she had followed the teaching of Jesus who said, “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?  Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. – Mt 5:43-48 

Again, her fear of never having a child of her own evaporated when she realized that there were thousands of children in Pakistan who had no one to love them. So she decided to help them, by adopting one as her own, and a cool stream of happiness flowed back into her bruised heart. Today Muniba has a healthy young son whom she loves and who loves her, more, she goes around giving talks and helping people see the good side of life, and appreciate what they have.

Every great athlete will tell you that they are at their best when they are not self focused or self conscious, but rather when they are totally focused on the outside, on the game, likewise, people who have suffered some disaster are best able to overcome when they resist the urge to bitter self pity, focus on helping others.

Muniba’s pain and suffering opened her eyes and made her more understanding with the sufferings of others and thus made her a better person.

“There are incidents that happen, that deform you, yet they mold you into the best version of you,” Muniba said, thus affirming the truth that behind the dark clouds of pain lies the silver lining of realizing a better, more beautiful version ourselves, like gold purified by fire, like rough diamond made valuable by knocks and chisels blows.

Understanding God

“God has a purpose you,” her mother had said to her and those magic words had set her heart into a search mode, looking outside of self. It awoken her curiosity to discover what she can do to help others, for to suffer need is something that can happen to anybody, but knowing how to endure it belongs to great souls, to souls who have loved much.

It is understandable that most people avoid suffering like a bat avoids fire, but if the suffering has come to stay, then rejection would be futile and harmful because the hand of the clock no matter how we wish cannot be turned back.

The wise thing is acceptance. And making the best of the bad situation

This is why the Christian message is so powerful and is called the good news.  God emptied himself, became man, and humbled himself to die on the Cross, so that people like Muniba will know that God loves them since he himself choose to suffer similar affliction, but not just her, but indeed all men and women of all times

Prior to Jesus message, suffering was insufferable, and those who suffered had no hope. Then worldly power and wealth was everything and a man’s worth was largely measured by what he had.

Christ turned all that upside down. He, being rich, became become poor, born in a Manger, the dwelling place of animals, lived poor and preach that the poor are blessed, and that all the things that men cringe and fly from are the true treasures, hunger, thirst for Righteous, meekness. Further, He not only preached, His death and resurrection sealed His teachings as authentic and indeed divine.

Though Muniba isn’t a Christian, she has grasped the tenants Christianity, and just like in the Passion, the Cross ceased to be a symbol of punishment and became instead a sign of victory, so Muniba’s wheel cheer and urine bag is a sign hope and victory for all. At 42, she has won so many international award as an artist, motivational speaker, activist, TV Host, and Pakistan’s First Goodwill Ambassador to UNWomen Pakistan.

“I always go around with a big smile on my face,” Muniba says, an iron woman whose example is urging everyone to make up their minds to follow the way of self-surrender even when the Cross is on their shoulders, she urges us to have a smile on our lips, so that light can enter our souls.

Muniba Iron Lady of Pakistan

by Chinwuba Iyizoba





Holy Matrimony: Odera & Chinedu Odunukwe: 13 July 2019

15 07 2019

Enjoy Pictures of the joining of Chinedu Udunukwe and Odera Iyizoba together in the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony at St Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, 1004 Estate on Saturday 13th of July 2019. Wishing the couple a life of Holy Wedlock filled with God. Enjoy!

 





Odera Iyizoba & Chinedu Odunukwe Paints Nimo Red: Igbankwu 6th July 2019

8 07 2019

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A Million Pains as Adele’s Marriage Shatters

23 04 2019

by Chinwuba Iyizoba

The 54th Annual GRAMMY Awards - Backstage And Audience

For years now, rumors have been growing that music idol, Adele’s marriage was failing, yet many of her fans were shocked when, last week, one of her spokesperson confirmed it. There is something about her that pulls the heart’s string making everyone root for her to succeed, even in marriage. Yet, any keen observer of trends already knew where the shadow of the growing tree would fall.

The 30 year old music diva had been living (cohabiting) with 45 year old Simon Konecki, a successful entrepreneur, for 6 years before they got married. They already had a son, Angelo, in 2012, before deciding to marry secretly in 2016.  It is common that couples who cohabit before marriage often discover that their marriage is like watching a rerun soccer game, lacking content, expectancy and surprise. In a short time they could begin fidgeting with the TV remote, searching for something more exciting.

adele marriage

The news was shocking because the singer had recently spoken of her longing to expand her family.

‘My womb is starting to ache a little bit,’ she said. ‘It’s like, ‘Baby, baby, baby. Need a baby.’ I’m not pregnant. I won’t get pregnant until the end of the tour,’ she had said not too long ago on a TV interview.

This may suggest that perhaps Simon may be the one pushing it. Her gift to him of a 400,000 euro mansion shortly before the news broke did not seem to have placated him. Having been divorced previously, he has plenty of experience, and doesn’t seem to be affected by it all. He was seen at a party the night that the news broke, having such a good time according to witnesses.

Adele-husband2

Divorce rarely benefits anyone much less the woman. It far easier for a man to walk out of one marriage and walk right into another than it is for woman to do the same. A woman’s biological sand clock runs out quickly; her beauty and fertility, resources that help her attract men, last but little and every man knows that.

Adele herself was spotted in a gay bar getting drunk with friends even as her marriage is going up in smoke. Yet there is no doubt she loves her son and wants the best for him. Both she and her husband have said that though they are getting divorced, they are committed to best interest of their child even as they rip apart the very thing that is in the best interest of their child.

Mainstream media is still busy minting new phrases to describe the divorce: “They are breaking up as friends,” says one. “Happily divorcing,” says another.

Yet, breaking up isn’t what friends do and people break up because they aren’t happy. If marriage  creates a single heart, divorce rips it to a million pieces, and when a heart is ripped it often dies.

So Why Marry?

Why do people who have lived almost the entire length a relationship cohabiting marry?  What were they missing even when they seem to have it all?

Adele and Simon already had a child, and business was going so well, her three studio album “19’ (2008), “21” (2011), “25” (2015) were each a huge hit worldwide with sales topping over a 100 million records. So why did she get married, and secretly for that matter?

baby

Marriage is the public pledge between a man and a woman to join their common destiny for life, and for the sake of children. Christian marriage is even more profound, the couple decides to give themselves wholly and entirely to each other in marital love for life and in openness to life, a decision that is attractive and noble and many unmarried people desire it.

But the modern creation of “no fault divorce” has radically altered the meaning of marriage, stripping it of all vestiges of permanence, honor and respect; it is now a naked business contract–with exit clauses.

 

It’s high time a name; a new name is found for this new creature which is startlingly different from the old; a name that reflects the new reality; like a larva is distinct from a butterfly and has a different name, even while sharing a common origin, this new modern business contract often referred to as marriage should be distinguished from true marriage by a new name.

By Chinwuba Iyizoba





Big Brother Naija Trojan horse

4 03 2019

by Chinwuba Iyizoba

They came in 2006 selling the story of a talent hunt but sold Nigerians a Trojan horse.

BBNnaija 2019 audition venue was like a scene from world war Z. Crowds of indigent youths thronged the venue pleading and wailing, crushed against iron railings, some broke their legs, and all were desperate to get in. They clawed their way coveting the $100k prize money, a ticket out of poverty worth dying for. Yet the big brother show is a rip off.

BBNaija 2019 audition
Crowds of Nigerian youths at BBNaija 2019 audition

The show is about 12 contestants living in an isolated house for 90 days, competing for a winner takes-it-all star prize by avoiding eviction. To please viewer to vote “stay” they must shed all dignity, self-respect and modesty, even engaging in explicit sex while the camera rolls.

Sex sells

With big colored eye on profit, the producers encourage sexual experimentation among the housemates on every episode, often plying them alcohol to loosen things up, and supplying cartons of condoms. BBNaija portrays sex as casual and consequence-free to minors who watch these episodes.

“Just as we read specific books and show educational movies to our children in hopes that they learn lessons from the characters, teens are more likely to have sex after being exposed to sexual content in the media,” says Dr. Carolyn Ross on Psychology Today

Parents who allow their teens to watch BBNaija shouldn’t be surprised if they begin having sex, and perhaps even high-risk sex and catching sexually transmitted diseases and becoming pregnant. They may even become sex addicts.

Early exposure to pornography (or explicit sexual content on television), says Dr. Ross, is a risk factor for sex addictions and other intimacy disorders. In one study of 932 sex addicts, 90 percent of men and 77 percent of women reported that pornography was a factor in their addiction.

In 2018, having interviewed Christians and Muslims, the Nigerian Vanguard wrote a good piece of the harmful effect of the show, denouncing it’s deviation to open immorality. Yet, the show goes on, and so many poor young people across the nation besieged the audition venues seeking last month, while families’ lap up episode after episode.

Follow the money.

The money comes from the evictions.  Every week when different housemate are placed on eviction, and the public use their money to vote them back in.  The votes come in millions. During one of recent BBNaija finale, it was reported that 170 Million votes were cast via text messages that cost N30. If you do the math, that is approximately $14M earned by the organizers.  

Gifty Brian Ajumobi ex-house mate

Since it is winner take all, all but the one winner gets paid while others walk away, broken, sold and scared and some never manage to pick up the broken pieces. (There are many unwed mothers’ among the ex-housemates.) Many of the used young ladies can’t find husbands, some like ex-house mate, Gift Brian Ajumobi, has multiple sex partners and children out of wedlock and is presently embroiled in paternity suites.

All in the name of entertainment

Whatever happened to the Nigerian family sense of modesty so admired by the world a few years ago? Now we pay to watch our youths feed, play and copulate. How diabolically naive we have become. Are we waiting for same-sex fornications and bestiality to add to the fun?

Parents and families should wake up and throw out this Trojan horse in their midst. A society willing to compromise its value and honor is a society without value and honor.

 It’s unfortunate that Atiku Abubaker who recently lost the presidential election, in a bid to garner popularity among the young, tweeted a congratulatory message to last year’s BBNaija winner.

Educators, writers, politicians and legislators must keep in mind that a great part of social and even personal problems has its roots in the failure or the collapse of family life. To fight against juvenile delinquency or against the prostitution of women and at the same time to favor the discrediting or deterioration of the institution of the family is both senseless and contradictory.

In spite of the obvious and genuine harm done by this show, we see no protests, families carrying placard and politicians debating on how to proscribe the show or prosecute their promoters, rather viewing statistics are spiking and more and more young people turn up each year for auditions.

It must be understood that the role of parents and families in social and political life cannot be merely passive. They themselves must be ‘the first to take steps to see that the laws and institutions of the State, films and reality TV’s do not offend, but support and positively enhance family life and welfare of minors

Nigerians should reject this show, looking for disruptive ways to ensure that those who insist on promoting this heist stop making money. They should also besiege the news media with the reports of the negative influences on children, calling out the promoters and exposing their true agenda.

On the other hand, families should support and promote family friendly TV shows that teach skills, virtues and discipline to children.





Changing Society’s View on “Hooking Up”

27 02 2019

Since the 1960s, we have witnessed an incredible liberalization of sexual mores. The ubiquitous use of sex in advertising, movies, television, and fashion—sex as entertainment, sex as economic incentive, sex as substitute for thought, for communication, for edification—has given a green light and public blessing to the unashamed use of sex as a crass commodity of self-gratification. Sexual gratification is often valued more than physical and emotional well-being, and the pursuit of the former has generally led to the neglect of the latter. Glamorized by the media and by celebrities, premarital and extra-marital affairs, together with the emergence of the “hookup culture,” no longer carry the stigma of social or moral opprobrium. Such practices tend to insinuate themselves into our public consciousness with little or no effective opposition.

During this time, we in America have seen myriad examples of plays, films, and TV shows evincing (overtly or covertly) envy and admiration for men and women engaging in adultery or promiscuity. Bernard Slade’s famous play (later adapted into a movie), Same Time Next Year, a story about extra-marital love, ran for years on Broadway. The award-winning movie The Bridges of Madison County (1995), a story about the happiness a lonely farmer’s housewife enjoys with a photographer, won the ASCAP Award for the “Top Box-Office Film” of 1996. The ever-rerunning TV serial (adapted from Candace Bushnell’s novel), Sex and the City, spotlights four professional women in their thirties and their big city sexual escapades as they search for the “perfect orgasm” and “Mr. Right”—in that order.

What lessons are learned from such shows? What do they teach us about self-respect, honoring commitments, and personal boundaries? The four sirens of Sex and the City may be sympathetic and amusing, but their affairs—however kooky or disillusioning—are romanticized and prized. Sex is portrayed as a desirable but short-lived commodity typically spoiled by attempts to transform it into a meaningful relationship. It seems that sex uncoupled from relationships has become the norm for many, and several studies bear this out.

Of course, it is true that many plays, movies, and TV shows often express a nostalgic regret for lost innocence and tarnished integrity. Nevertheless, the focus on casual sex in the entertainment industry and in society in general (also sometimes referred to as “hooking up,” “non-relationship sex,” “recreational sex,” “friends with benefits,” “no-strings-attached relationships,” “one-night stands,” and “sex without dating”) has become obsessive. The existence of this phenomenon alone is likely sufficient to promote the acceptance of adultery and sexual promiscuity—not because it is right, but because it is viewed as “natural,” “normal,” and something everybody does.

But what is the effect of this culture? As hookups increase, traditional dates decrease; “post-hookup, a follow-up date is rarely expected.” And as dating has waned, so too has marriage. Many young adults do not seem to have developed the ability to psychologically and socially settle down. Although young adults are becoming sexually mature at earlier ages, people are marrying later. In many cases, they do not marry at all. Family compositions have changed, and children are frequently born to parents at older ages than in previous generations. Divorce rates have skyrocketed, particularly for those who engage in premarital sex. Studies show “the odds of divorce are lowest with zero or one premarital partner” and “marriages preceded by non-marital fertility have disproportionately high divorce rates.”

These facts provide evidence that the well-known sexual prohibitions of the Bible are not as irrelevant as many seem to think. In fact, a growing number of young people—led by thoughtful college professors and mentors—have come to see the value of both sexual abstention prior to marriage and sexual fidelity during marriage.

Changing the Dating Definition

Boston College professor Dr. Kerry Cronin has helped bring about this reawakening. About twelve years ago, in an effort to counter the common practice of “hooking up,” Professor Cronin created an unconventional assignment in her classroom: she required her students to go on a first date and write a report about the experience.

This assignment was intended to counteract the hookup culture in which the connection of the parties involved is “intended to be purely physical in nature” and where the two individuals shut down “any communication or attachment that might lead to emotional attachment.”

Cronin found that many of her students were clueless about the actual process of dating. Because the hookup culture had become so dominant, “going on a date became a weirdly countercultural thing to do.” Professor Cronin thus concluded that “the social script of dating was really long gone.” So, she created a series of guidelines to teach the students how to ask someone out on a date and what to do during that date. These include asking for a date in person (“texting is the devil. Stop it.”), avoiding physical contact (except possibly an A-frame hug at the date’s conclusion), and forbidding the use of alcohol or drugs on the date. According to Cronin’s rules, the person who asked the other out must pay for the date, and the asker should have a plan for the date rather than asking the other person what to do. The first date should be relatively short and inexpensive. The key assignment was to establish real communication between the two individuals and allow them time to get to know each other.

Her program became so noteworthy that this past April a documentary film featuring Professor Cronin, The Dating Project, was released. The ninety-minute film follows five single people, ages eighteen to forty, as they attempt to navigate their way through the “dating deficit” that has been created by hanging out, hooking up, texting, and using social media. The film presents a sobering picture of what the culture of sexual liberation and free love has done to today’s youth. The film’s message is that hookups objectify the participants and leave both parties empty and unfulfilled. Today’s hookup culture makes it much more difficult to build lasting, emotionally connected relationships. True relationships take time and work, but they can be incredibly fulfilling. They enable us to grow our humanity in genuine self-giving love.

The film’s writer and producer, Megan Harrington, observed that “people are so connected and not connected at the same time. So many young adults are lonely. We all want relationships, but the superficial masks we wear on our social media platforms do not present our true selves.”

Even though Dr. Cronin is a practicing Catholic, her college course and the subsequent movie on dating have resonated with secularists who have come to realize that the “sexual liberation” they bought into has created confusion about stable intimate relationships. This intimacy crisis has effectively disconnected intimate sexual behavior from emotional connection.

Is Sex Spiritual?

Although social trends may change, values—such as disciplining and channeling sexual impulses—are timeless and universal. Today’s social practices do not reinforce the development of these unchanging values. To encourage healthy, committed relationships, we must strive to create social conditions designed to strengthen and encourage robust families. This is an essential and basic principle of the Seven Laws of Noah, a common worldview underlying Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Through her assignments, Professor Cronin is encouraging her students to follow the standards of sexual morality that form the basis of these three Abrahamic faiths.

As John Paul II put it, “Self-control is not needed because the body is evil—the truth is just the opposite. The body should be controlled with honor because it is worthy of honor.” Because our bodies are sacred property created by G-d within which resides His Holy Spirit, we effectively defile the Divine within us when we participate in the hookup culture (or in other sexual proclivities such as pornography or prostitution). A person’s body and soul are not possessions to either abuse, harm, or destroy. Lev. 19:1 commands us to “be holy,” a directive that carries strong ethical and moral implications for humanity as we strive to imitate Him.

Unmoored from a committed and loving marital relationship, the unchecked sex drive harms both the individual and the society in which he or she lives. The Noahide Code teaches us that both our bodies and our souls are entrusted to us by G-d and are Divine property. This perspective reinforces the Biblical concept that we are made in the “image of G-d,” thereby giving moral context to the psychological matrix of the human personality that involves a complex interrelationship of body, mind, and soul.

ARTHUR GOLDBERG

Arthur Goldberg is Co-Director of the American based Jewish Institute for Global Awareness (JIFGA), former Co-Director of JONAH, Inc. JIFGA sponsors http://www.fundingmorality.com, a crowd-funding site for those committed to Biblical values. He has authored Light in the Closet: Tora… READ MORE





Davido’s Mom

18 02 2019

By Chinwuba Iyizoba

Davido gets it right with his mom, but wrong with women.

Davido at 02 Arena London

When Davido’s January 27, London concert sold out at the 02 Arena, with a crowd of more than 20000 people, the music maestro was so overjoyed that he credited the triumph to the help of his late mother.

Celebrating with guests, the next day, the 26 yrs old broke down in tears, and continued thanking his late mom comparing her to an angel, posting on instagram:

“Only angels can make such Dreams come true … Thank you mom for watching over your baby.”

His mom, Veronica Adeleke, died when he was 10. A woman of rare beauty and a music lover, she had owned a record label in the 90’s which she named after Davido, who must have inherited her love for music, and a sign of strong bond between mother and son that even death is unable to break.

Veronica Adeleke, Davido’s Mom

Much like Catholics understanding of devotion to Mother Mary, he believes that she is very much alive in heaven, helping him each step of the way.

In his mind, love for his mom pushes him to give his best.

Interestingly, this devotion to his mom, rather than offend anyone is in fact making him appear more humane, warm and attractive to his fans especially women, yet his relationship with other women leave much to be desired having fathered two daughters from two different women while in a public relationship with a third.

Considering that he has over 2 million followers on face-book and many more on Instagram, many of them young people, one can see that his loose lifestyle is having bad influence on public morals.

As a role model, he is teaching his young fans to behave like cows, next he will teach them to be content to go the way of goats. He is sending the wrong message to young people to act like miserably beasts who dont know how to control their passions.

Davido whose music career took off with his 2011 hit single “Dami Duro” and gained him a huge student fan base should remember that his mom, apart from her love for music, was a teacher, a university lecturer, who loved academics and taught her students well, and desired that her students do well in their studies.

Davido’s Fans

Without a doubt, she would desired that his music and songs helped his young fans achieve academic excellence, by being a little less salacious, and more focused on themes that encourages learning, extolling the virtues of hard work and family.

Thus it is meet and proper for him to recognize his moms help, but it’s even better for him emulate her love for family, marriage and try to emulate it.

Davido’s Father (Middle) with daughters by his side and his son Davido standing behind with his elder brother.

Moreover, he enjoyed and continues to enjoy the dignity and prestige of being born in a family. His mom met his father Adedeji Adeleke in the 80’s; they fell in love, got married and had four children. Where his parents not properly married, perhaps he would not be who he is today.

Why then would he deny his own children that same dignity? It is unfortunate, unfair and rather irresponsible.

Davido with one of his daughters fathered out of wedlock

One could argue that wealth and popularity has gotten into his head, but his father was a very rich man, and popular, yet there aren’t evidence that his money or fame influenced him to lead a reprobate life, having, and children with other women apart from his mother.

Without a doubt, his parents good example of lifelong love, marriage and great family atmosphere has contributed in no small measures to his own success; his children has a right to expect same from him and would be a dereliction of duty if he fails to do so. In fact one could even say that he is setting his daughters up for failure since studies show that children from stable homes do way better than one from broken homes.

His mother, like all mothers know a great deal about love. Through marriage, God opened a fruitful channel for her love to share in the power God on free and responsible transmitting of life, rather than the wickedly undermining God’s plan because selfish human pleasures.

I am sure, Davido’s mom watching over him so motherly, wanting the best for him, would wish him to stop sowing his wild oats around, settle down, get married and treat his wife and children with more respect. She would wish to tell him that running around and fathering children shamelessly with different women isn’t a very good way to pay her back for all the toil and hard work in bringing him and his 3 siblings up and that he must stop taking advantage of women if he truly loves her.








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