It sounds like tale by moonlight but it is indeed a verifiable fact that a woman was delivered of a live turtle and a padlock in the presence of thousands of worshippers during a church service in a Lagos church.
Time was 5am on Wednesday, December 2, 2015 during the Rhema water programme organised by the Elijah Faith Assembly Church, Ajao Estate, Lagos. The incident took many, including the church’s Overseer, Prophet Chinonso Favour Aniebo by surprise. Many took to their heels as a result of fear and the irritation of seeing a pool of blood that gushed out of the private part of the woman, Mrs Cassandra Amaka Obi, before the turtle eventually came out.
After the incident, the 22-year-old Cassandra from Ihiala, in Anambra State, lay flat on the floor of the church, while deliverance prayers were going on to resuscitate her, after some hours of going into coma. The story of Cassandra, who is nursing a six-month-old baby girl, who she took to the church that fateful day, will arouse fears and probably sympathy in any human.
She told Saturday Sun that her problems started when she was a little girl under her parents in their Umuabanike village, Ihiala. According to her, her father, who is a strong and known native doctor in the area, initiated her into the occult through his shrine when she was seven years old and started using her to execute his job.
“When I was nine, my father invoked both the key and the turtle in my body, so that I will be strong spiritually to assist him in his shrine. That time, this turtle was in his barn and was smaller. I really knew the time he did the whole thing, but as a child, I did not know the implication. Then, among all the children my father has, I was the closest to him, so he decided to use me in his shrine. Sometimes, after preparing charms, he would send me to go and throw them into the river or anywhere he wanted me to send it to. And, because he used to give me some money, I was happy working with him”, she stated.
Cassandra said she continued working with her father in the shrine until she clocked the age of 17 when someone came to ask for her hand in marriage, but her father bluntly refused her getting married.
Her words: “At 17, I thought I had served my father well and should, therefore, marry, but surprisingly, my father objected to that, insisting that I should not get married at all, instead, I should stay at home and have as many children as I liked, in order to assist him in his job. But, I refused. After much pressure, he managed to allow me get married. My husband fulfilled all the marriage rites and on the day of our wedding, my father did not come to the church, he only appeared when we wanted to take photographs and he joined us. Could you believe that immediately we finished taking a photograph with my father, I did not get myself again, I lost my memory, pulled my wedding ring and threw it to my husband and told him that the marriage was over. I ran away and they caught me. In fact, our guests and everyone present were surprised. Even when they managed to take me to my father’s house, I wanted to jump the fence. It was when my father brought kola nuts and prayed that I regained my senses and followed my husband that I was able to calm down.”
That could be said to be the beginning of Cassandra’s marital problems. After about six years of their marriage, she could not conceive probably due to the padlock, turtle and other dangerous concoctions her father put in her body. She and her husband went to so many places in search of solution, and lots of money, energy and time were wasted, but all were fruitless.
Meanwhile, as these were going on, Cassandra did not reveal to her husband what was wrong with her. “Though, I knew that all the things inside my body were the cause of the problem we were having in our home, I did not want to tell my husband because he will be scared and may decide not to continue with the marriage.”
While the search for solution to their problem continued, their neighbour introduced them to the Elijah Faith Assembly Church in 2013 where they received prayers and deliverance. Shortly after, she conceived and had her first baby girl.
“The problem that brought us to Elijah Faith Assembly in August 2013 was six years of childless marriage. As I came out in the church that first day to give offering, the prophet sighted me, and told me to stop making up. Also, when we went for service the next Sunday, the prophet still told me that we came to the church because of fruit of the womb. In fact, I did not take him seriously. When we got home, I thought it was due to the same headtie I put on that made the prophet to recognize me as such. So, I decided to change the headtie. Yet, when we went to service another time, he prophesied that my problem started from my family, and that my father was responsible for my problems. He, therefore, asked me to see him after. But, while coming, I should buy whatever I knew my father would like and bring them to him. So, I bought wrapper and drink, and the prophet anointed them and directed me to send the gifts to my father in the village and return to Lagos next day.”
Cassandra explained that when she took the gifts to her father, he prayed for her to give birth to as many children as she likes. “After that, I returned to Lagos and became pregnant in September and delivered my first child. Meanwhile, the objects were still inside my body. But, it was during the Rhema water programme of the church that I vomited the padlock, after delivering my first child. Then, I delivered the turtle, six months after delivering my second child during the church’s Rhema water programme.”
She said the turtle delivery miracle started when her husband travelled home recently and visited her father, and he was given some coconuts by her father’s maid. “Although, when my husband was travelling, I warned him not to visit my father because I understand him well, but he insisted. When he brought the coconut, it did not occur to me not to eat it. So, I broke one, ate and gave some to my neighbours. After eating it, I started to experience severe stomach pains. Later, my stomach began to swell like a pregnant woman. So, when I could not bear it any longer, I reported to Prophet Chinonso, he prayed for me and advised me not to worry about it. But after sometime, I started bleeding. Then, I attended a Tuesday church programme and the prophet prayed for me. Then, following day, being Wednesday, I returned to the church for the Rhema water programme. And, during deliverance prayer by Prophet Chinonso, the bleeding became more serious, as if I was in labour. Meanwhile, before the bleeding, I had contractions and those sitting close to me became curious and were asking whether I was pregnant. But I told them that I was not pregnant, rather I am nursing a six-month-old baby.”
Cassandra stated that when the bleeding was on, the prophet was busy praying from the altear. So, he sent the Assistant Pastor, Chukwuma Aniebo to give her Rhema water to drink, while some was poured on her body. “After drinking the water, the turtle rushed out with blood from my vagina and I became relieved immediately.”
She thanked God for the miracle that caused a stir in the church. “I do not know how to explain this because I have been in bondage. But now I am free, therefore, I promise to use everything I have to serve God.”
Her husband, Mr Onyeka Obi also narrated his ordeal throughout their eight years of marriage. According to him, “Since the time I married her, it has been from one problem to the other. Sometimes, she would tell me that she made love with cat in her dream. And anytime I made love to her, my business would suffer a misfortune. In fact, it had been spiritual attacks all along and all the places we went for solution and spent huge amount of money, did not yield any positive result until we were introduced to Elijah Faith Assembly Church. And thank God, all the problems that have been taking us from one place to the other are now over. We have two kids, and all the spiritual attacks have stopped. Meanwhile, I went through hell, trying to find solution to her problems.”
Prophet Chinonso, who was busy at the altar conducting the deliverance service when the miracle took place at the nursing mother’s section of the church, described it as one of the greatest God has performed through him. “I thank God that He proved himself in the lives of the couple who have been suffering from spiritual bondage. In fact, this miracle is hard to believe. But God did it to uplift his name. We have been praying that God should perform a miracle that would shake the world. And we are happy that He has done it.”
One of the Church members, Mrs Chimezie Nwabugo who witnessed the incident explained that she was the one that pressed Cassandra’s stomach before the turtle came out. “I sat close to her in the church. Eventually, she called my attention to come and press her stomach. Initially, I was reluctant because I did not know what was happening to her. But after much pressure, I decided to assist her. When I pressed her stomach gently, she insisted that I should help her remove her undies and press her harder. And, when I did, she told me that the thing was coming out. Then, I wondered what she meant since she was not pregnant. Thereafter, she said it has come out. I did not see anything, until when we pulled her away from the pool of blood where she was lying and I saw something like a congealed blood that fell off her cloth. When I looked closely, I noticed that it was a live turtle covered with blood. Because of that, I ran away and almost everyone close to the place left in fear. In fact, that experience was a very strange one and I have not had it before. Since that time, people on the streets call me midwife that helped a woman to deliver a turtle, instead of a child, but I do not bother because God knows why it happened like that”, she stated.