Church Cleanses Anambra Community Over Incest As Siblings Apologize
By Nedum Noble
The family of Lewis Ezeibekwe in Agba community in Ekwulobia, Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra State, at the weekend, underwent a spiritual cleansing following the purported marriage between two members of the family.
Chiadikobi Ezeibekwe, a 25 years old Maths teacher and her 17years old sister, Chibuzor, a former student of Govt Technical College, were cleansed and their marriage severed.
247ureports.com gathered that prior to the purging, Chiadi, together with his sister, Chibuzo had accepted their wrongs and asked for forgiveness from the community.
“What we did was wrong and an abomination in our community. I feel pained in my heart. I did not do it because I was hungry for a woman or attracted to my sister, far from it.
“I apologize to everyone. I am very sorry for bringing all of you out here under the sun. Please forgive us. We have gone through the process of annulment and the marriage has been annulled,” they confessed.
The parish priest of St Joseph’s Catholic Church, Ekwulobia, Rev Fr. Ignatius Onwuatuegwu of St. Joseph Catholic who officiated the cleansing mass, held in front of Ezeibekwe’s house, said the gathering was an opportunity to emphasize on the social and spiritual consequence of incest.
He said the sin committed by the siblings did not concern only the family of Lewis, but the entire Ekwulobia.
“We are in a world that has disintegrated. This cleansing is important for all us and the entire country,” he said.
Drawing reference from 2 Peter 2:2-4, the priest called on the people to repent, decrying the frequent occurrences of the sin of incest in many communities.
“We are here to do reparation of the sin that is already rampant in our society. It is also an opportunity for us to do reparation for Ekwulobia,” he added.
Onwuatuegwu said he was particularly touched by the life of the teacher, who he noted had been committed to things of God, wondering what might have gone wrong.
“When I came to Ekwulobia, I met him as a boy yearning for the things of God. He was the leader of the block rosary group but here we are today. When I heard the story, I was taken aback. Only God knows what happened,” he said.
Our correspondent gathered that before the church service commenced, the eight members of the Ezeibekwe were requested to kneel down before the traditional ruler, traditional prime minister and elders of the community, where they apologized to the entire community.
After the cleansing rituals, seven girls, said to be virgins and adorned with white dresses, swept the Ezeibekwe compound with seven palm frond branches.