Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Obianuju Ekeocha

8/3/2014 (3 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

I pray that beyond our global rejoicing, we would be adorned with even a portion of the heroic virtue of Meriam Ibrahim's authentic feminism, purified and forged in the fiery crucible of religious persecution.

You, my African sister, have become a lightning rod to the radical feminists of our times who repudiate and denigrate every virtue that you epitomize. Within your body, you have borne the marks and scars of a true Christian,a wife, a mother and a martyr, and in this way you have shown us what it means to be an empowered and liberated woman, and I\'m glad to say it is certainly not what the western radicals and ideologues are telling us. They try to tell us that for African women to be empowered, they need to be \"sexually liberated\", selfish, individualistic and fiercely autonomous, but you Meriam , by your own example , have taught us that the liberated African woman is the woman who is free to live and practice her faith, love her husband , and protect her children (born and unborn). A liberated woman is a woman of faith and family. This is the truth that must be spoken throughout Africa.

Pope Francis giving a blessing to Meriam and her youngest child

Pope Francis giving a blessing to Meriam and her youngest child

Highlights

By Obianuju Ekeocha

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/3/2014 (3 months ago)

Published in Africa

Keywords: Obianuju Ekeocha, Nigeria, culture of life, marriage defense, Meriam Ibrahim, feminine genius, new feminism,


LONDON, England (Catholic Online) - The great news of Meriam Ibrahim's arrival in Italy filled me with so much joy and elation. The images of this graceful and beautiful African woman, babe in hand, stepping out of the plane was a sight to behold especially after her unspeakable pain and suffering in the Sudanese prison.

So I thought I should, in a very simple letter, write down my reflections and thoughts of gratitude for this resilient daughter of Africa whose freedom is being celebrated by the entire world today.

On behalf of all African women, I thank you Meriam Ibrahim, for showing the world the indomitable courage that is at the core of authentic femininity. I say this because your pain and persecution were tied so firmly to your femininity. And so your triumph was a most powerful witness to life, to motherhood, to marriage, to love and to faith.

You are indeed a true picture of faith and virtue, a true symbol of strength and resilience. You are, in my humble opinion, a real woman of substance, an African woman of substance and your story fills my heart with courage and audacity in my own vocation to defend our African culture of life,marriage, motherhood, faith and family, no matter how difficult, no matter how shameful and no matter how painful for me.

For under intense persecution, you refused to deny your Christian faith. Under the threat of the extremists, you stood as a witness and a martyr.

Under the pain of incarceration, you would not deny your husband or renounce your marriage.

Under the heavy shackles of prison you still had the strength and defiance to give life,to give birth.

Under the certainty of a death sentence you had the determination to nurse your precious little baby.

By your powerful example, the world has come to witness the resilience of a young African woman who in the worst conditions bore heroic witness to the virtues of faith, marriage, and motherhood.

Your unspeakable struggles in the last few months have been a most radiant ray of light that has pierced through the darkest clouds to contradict a modern world that is telling us that faith means nothing, that religious freedom is not all that important, that marriage is whatever we want it to be, that motherhood should be a choice we make under the most conducive situations, that our babies should only be born at the most convenient of times. 

You, my African sister, have become a lightning rod to the radical feminists of our times who repudiate and denigrate every virtue that you epitomize . 

Within your body, you have borne the marks and scars of a true Christian,a wife,a mother and a martyr, and in this way you have shown us what it means to be an empowered and liberated woman, and I'm glad to say it is certainly not what the western radicals and ideologues are telling us.

They try to tell us that for African women to be empowered, they need to be "sexually liberated", selfish, individualistic and fiercely autonomous, but you Meriam, by your own example, have taught us that the liberated African woman is the woman who is free to live and practice her faith, love her husband , and protect her children (born and unborn). A liberated woman is a woman of faith and family. This is the truth that must be spoken throughout Africa.

Today, the world watched you as you breathed the fresh air of freedom and as you made your first stop, not at the Whitehouse, but rather at the House of St Martha (Casa Santa Marta) which is also the house of the Holy Father Pope Francis. Instead of the presidential handshake that many others would have craved first, you chose the papal handshake. And instead of the political reception you chose the apostolic benediction for you and your family. You chose the Pope over the POTUS!
You are a woman of great wisdom and strength and indeed Africa raises, praises and celebrates you.

We rejoice with you and for you.

We rejoice that you are free at last.

And out of our rejoicing, I pray that more women (from our Africa and from every corner of the world) will reflect deeply on your experience so as to emulate you.
I pray for women of faith to rise up and bear courageous witness even to the point of martyrdom. 

I pray for women who are pregnant to choose life for their babies at all cost.

I pray for women who are wives and mothers to stay true to their vows and vocations.

I pray that beyond our global rejoicing, we would be adorned with even a portion of the heroic virtue of Meriam Ibrahim's authentic feminism, purified and forged in the fiery crucible of religious persecution.

-----

Obianuju Ekeocha is an African woman, living and working in the United Kingdom as a Specialist Biomedical Scientist. She is also the founder of Culture of Life Africa, an initiative dedicated to the promotion of a Culture of Life in Africa  through the dissemination of good information, sensitization and education. She has written several articles including the "Open Letter to Melinda Gates"  and "Africa in the redefined world (An Open Letter to President Obama)" Her passion and privilege is to continue to work in defense of the sanctity and dignity of life within Culture.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for November 2014
Lonely people:
That all who suffer loneliness may experience the closeness of God and the support of others.
Mentors of seminarians and religious: That young seminarians and religious may have wise and well-formed mentors.



Comments


More Africa

Obianuju Ekeocha: Western Giants Launch Dangerous and Controversial Contraceptive in Africa Watch

Image of Obianuju Ekeocha - I am only one African woman, but from where I stand I choose today to speak up, to lament, to complain and to shed silent tears for my fellow African women, with the hope that by the end of today, my words and tears may reach and touch the hearts of people of goodwill around the world who will join me in defending the dignity of the African women.

By Obianuju Ekeocha

Who will speak up for the women of Africa? Who will lament the crass disregard for their well-being? Who will complain about the cruel disrespect with which they are being treated? Who will shed tears for the irreparable damage that could befall them? I am only ... continue reading


Boko Haram undermines stability of Nigeria Watch

Image of At least 45 people were killed in a Boko Haram reprisal attack on a village in northeastern Nigeria, the epicenter of the Islamists' five-year insurgency.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

While the Nigerian army has made movies to retake two small villages overrun by the Islamist sect Boko Haram, another terrorist attack was launched by the terrorist group claimed the lives of 45 people. The mood here is one of confusion with the population ... continue reading


Humanitarian truce declared in Libya to evacuate civilians Watch

Image of The truce doesn't appear to have been respected.

By Kaci Racelma (Algiers, Algeria)

Forces loyal to the retired General Khalifa Haftar fighting Islamist groups such as Ansar Charia in Libya has reached a boiling point. The two sides have since agreed to a humanitarian truce in order to evacuate civilians from battle zones. ALGIERS, ALGERIA ... continue reading


Former African child slave speaks out Watch

Image of Anti-slavery campaigner James Kofi Annan is pictured at a school run by his charity Challenging Heights, which helps former child slaves.

By Emma Batha, Thomson Reuters Foundation

At six years old James Kofi Annan was sold into slavery. For seven years he risked his life diving into the murky waters of Ghana's vast Lake Volta to untangle fishing nets. LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Today Annan runs a charity which is credited with ... continue reading


Terrorist threat remains relevant in Egypt Watch

Image of Said group, Ansar Beit al Maqdes, doesn't intend to give up and threatens to go far in its war against the Egyptian decision-makers, including military power which toppled former Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Egypt is likely to become a favorite target among militant Islamist groups. The alleged interference of Marsha al Sissi coupled with his commitment to wage war against Islamist militias is likely to inflame like-minded terrorist groups in the region. ALGIERS, ... continue reading


21st Century SHAME: Almost 36 million people living as slaves worldwide Watch

Image of Mauritania was again the country where slavery was most prevalent by head of population while Qatar, host of the 2022 World Cup, rose up the rank from 96th place to be listed as the fourth worst country by percentage of the population.

By Katie Nguyen, Thomson Reuters Foundation

Almost 36 million people are living as slaves across the globe with an index on Monday listing Mauritania, Uzbekistan, Haiti, Qatar and India as the nations where modern-day slavery is most prevalent. LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The Walk Free Foundation, ... continue reading


Eleven drug smugglers arrested south of Algeria Watch

Image of The connection of these smugglers with Islamist armed groups is heavily felt among the civil society, wherein security remains the chief concern.

By Kaci Racelma (Algiers, Algeria)

Eleven smugglers were arrested this past weekend in Algeria's south by the People's National Army. News of the arrest was made in a statement released by the Ministry of Defense and was relayed in local newspapers. ALGIERS, ALGERIA (Catholic Online) - In the ... continue reading


Sixteen people injured in Cairo metro train explosion Watch

Image of Since the fall of former Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt has been regularly shaken by the attacks.

By Kaci Racelma (Algiers, Algeria)

An explosion injured at least 16 people in a subway car in Cairo. The attack came day after Egyptian terrorist groups pledged their allegiance to Islamist State. These groups wasted little time, detonating the train bomb on Thursday. ALGIERS, ALGERIA (Catholic ... continue reading


VIDEO: What's scarier than a shark? How about a GIANT COBRA on the beach! Watch

Image of A man strolling along the beach encountered a Cape Cobra, while it was taking a dip in the pool to soak its skin prior to shedding.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A South African man had the shock of his life while strolling along a Cape Town beach, when he encountered a deadly snake. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Jeffery Rinks, a Cape Town local, photographed the deadly Cape cobra in the shallows of Hout Bay, as it was ... continue reading


Ansar Beit al-Maqdess, Egyptian jihadist group pledges allegiance to ISIL Watch

Image of In an audio posted on its Twitter account, a reported Ansar Beit al-Maqdess recording says

By Kaci Racelma (Algiers, Algeria)

The Egyptian Ansar Beit al-Maqdess jihadist group, announced its allegiance to Islamic state earlier this week. The group's loyalty to al Baghdadi's organization comes as no surprise as other groups in North Africa have already pledged their allegiance to ISIL. ... continue reading


All Africa News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ezekiel 34:11-12, 15-17
11 "For the Lord Yahweh says this: Look, I myself ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 23:1-2, 2-3, 5, 6
1 [Psalm Of David] Yahweh is my shepherd, I lack ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 25:31-46
31 'When the Son of man comes in his glory, escorted ... Read More

Reading 2, First Corinthians 15:20-26, 28
20 In fact, however, Christ has been raised from the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 23rd, 2014 Image

Bl. Miguel Pro
November 23: Born on January 13, 1891 in Guadalupe, Mexico, Miguel Agustin ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter