Far away in the country of Funga, one young lady called Mollala died two days after giving birth due to pregnancy complications and inadequate healthcare services. When the mourners had gathered for the funeral mass and burial, Fr. John Tod stood up to address them.
"Fellow mourners, we are gathered here today to pay our last respect to our dear friend, Mollala, whom God has called out of this life into His friendship. But before I go any further, I would like to recognize the presence of our Congressman, Honorable Wilbur. With us also is Captain Charles of the Funga People's Defense Forces. I now take this opportunity to invite our chief mourner to come forward and give his condolence message." Fr. John walked towards Captain Charles, who was dressed in an army uniform sitting behind Mollala's casket, and handed him the microphone. "Sir, the floor is yours."
Charles received the microphone, stood up, and walked to the podium with his eyes sternly fix on Congressman Wilbur. "Thank you, Fr. John. My fellow mourners and members of the bereaved family, I'm saddened by the untimely death of our young sister Mollala. As you very well know, in one month alone, we have lost fifteen mothers to pregnancy complications in our district. This situation enrages me. How can our politicians, in their normal conscience, continue stealing money meant for our future mothers? What is more disturbing is that one of those thieves is here with us rolling his eyes as if this is funny."
Charles turned and addressed Wilbur directly. "Mr. Congressman, this is not funny! Can you tell us where the money budgeted for expecting mothers went?" Wilbur rolled his eyes and ignored Charles' question.
"I'm talking to you, Mr. Congressman," shouted Captain Charles as he slammed the microphone onto the ground angrily.
Wilbur gasped with horror at Charles' outrage as he responded. "I don't know what all this rage is all about! I'm here for the burial of our sister; I'm not here for politics."
"That is exactly my point! If you had not stolen her money, we would not be here preparing to bury her today. I have enough data on your corruption scandals more than you can care to imagine, and I think it's high time your electorates knew who you truly are. Let me go back to my car and bring more documents to implicate you. You are going to jail today. I will be right back."
As Captain Charles started making his way through the crowd to his car, Wilbur looked frightened. He stood up and sneaked out through the back door of the house. He then quickly jumped onto a parked motorcycle and asked Peter, the motorcycle operator, to give him a ride to the main road so that he could catch a taxi home. There was some commotion as the mourners stood up to watch Wilbur try to get away.
"Hurry up! Take me to the taxi park. Let's get out of here before that mad man comes back with embarrassing information about me. I'm not going to jail today!"
"But where did you leave your fancy car, Mr. Congressman?"
"This is time for desperate measures. Stop asking too many questions. Lets get out of here. Move!"
"But did you really steal the money meant for pregnant women?"
"Focus on operating your machine, young man. Some of these things are very complicated."
Peter started his motorcycle and took off with Wilbur. As they were going around a sharp corner at a terrific speed, they ran into a bull that was crossing the road. Wilbur somersaulted off the motorcycle to avoid getting injured but fell onto the horns of the bull. The bull swung its horns and tossed him onto the ground and broke his nose. Immediately, a police car, an ambulance, and a fire truck arrived at the scene of the accident. Then the paramedics loaded Wilbur into the ambulance and took him to the hospital.
"I didn't know that the accident was that serious!" said Mary, Wilbur's wife, while trying to cover him with warm blankets on his hospital bed. Wilbur had bandages all over his face. He looked disoriented and confused.
"Had I not been a terrific athlete, that bull could have broken my nose."
"Your nose is broken; and Captain Charles is not done with you, yet."
"He is not? Then I have to do something."
"What are you going to do? The army has already released him to run for your congressional seat in the forthcoming election."
"I'm not going to allow that to happen. Put the Secretary of Defense on the phone. Immediately!"
Mary picked up the phone and dialed the number. The phone rang and Moses, the Secretary of Defense picked up. "Hello!" Mary handed over the telephone to Wilbur. "Here, Moses is on the line."
"Look, I need your help. It's very urgent! I have always been there for you, so this time it's your turn. You remember how much I helped you when you got arrested for embezzling funds meant for the expecting wives of army veterans last year?"
"Yea! But I'm a changed man now. I don't take bribes anymore. What can I do for you now?"
"Make it impossible for number 0001 to retire from the army. If he runs against me in the next election, I might lose because the man has a lot of public support."
"You mean Captain Charles?"
"Exactly! $10,000, give and take."
"I think you should be sending for a priest not making bad deals with politicians in your condition."
"Alright, I will do it for you, but on one condition."
"What is that?"
"An additional $5,000 for my airtime. Deal or no deal?"
"But you just said you quit taking kickbacks!"
"What can I do? A friend in need is a friend indeed. Had your wife not been expecting a baby, I would have asked for more than that."
"My wife calls me thief number one, I guess you are thief number two."
"I don't have time for stories. Deal, or no deal?"
"Good! Your request is approved."
"Yes!" Wilbur clenches his fist in jubilation, but hurts his nose in the process and screams: "Ouch!" Mary fixes the bandages on his nose properly.
"That captain is going nowhere. Being a congressman is my destiny."
"Don't aggregate your nose; you still have a long way to recovery." Said Mary.
"You are right. Switch off the lights and let me take a nap."
"No. We need to talk."
"About what? Leave me alone I need some rest."
"About our second baby on the way and about you quitting politics."
Wilbur uncovered himself and turned toward Mary. "The baby will be alright and quitting politics is out of the question for me. Politics is what puts food on the table. Politics pays school fees for our children. Politics has earned me the respect I deserve from my constituents."
"What respect? Is escaping arrest and having your nose busted by bulls how respect looks like? We have eleven identical thieves in this country according to our national crime report, and you are one of them. Politics has turned you into a serial thief, and I think it's high time you did something valuable with your life. The Captain is not through with you, yet because when all is said and done, you will not only have a broken nose, but also you will have teary eyes, dentures, and artificial limbs."
"You now talk like a prophet of doom. How far down the list am I?"
"You are thief number one, Moses is thief number two, and both of you are going to hell."
"Then I need to see a priest as soon as possible!"
Bob opened Wilbur's hospital room door and entered wearing priestly robs holding a bible. Bob was a con man who always went around in hospitals pretending to be a priest praying for the sick for money.
"Did anyone send for a priest?" Asked Bob gleefully.
Mary and Wilbur look at each other appearing surprised. After a brief pause, Wilbur responded. "Yes, I sent for a priest, but not this soon!
"Well, I'm already here. What did you need a priest for?"
"My wife just reminded me that I was going to hell if I didn't receive the sacrament of penance."
"Well, you are in the right hands. At the major seminary I specialized in the sacrament of penitentiary." Wilbur and Mary looked at each other again surprised by Bob's response.
"Are you really a priest." Asked Mary.
"Of course I'm! Why?"
"Because you don't sound like one! Your 'sacrament of penitentiary' thing worries me. Did you graduate?"
"Of course I did graduate from Mount Agatha major seminary."
"I have been a Catholic all my life, but I have never heard about Mount Agatha Seminary!"
"It is up there in the woods. It's the most progressive and charismatic major seminary in the country. All we did was eat, pray and dance for the lord; eat, pray and dance for the lord. But listen, if you keep asking too many questions, you are going to miss your blessing. Let's get started." Bob made the sign of the cross. "In the name of the father, and of the son, and of the holy ghost, Amen. Let's hold hands." All three held hands and closed their eyes as Bob prayed. "Lord Jesus, I pray for the quick recovery of my brother Wilbur. And please Lord, save him from the fires of hell and take his soul to heaven now that his soul is in most need of your mercy."
Wilbur opens his eyes quickly. "I'm not dead, why are you praying for my soul?"
"You are a dead man walking if you don't know that; most politicians are. Close your eyes and let me finish. Lord, I also pray that you will forgive Wilbur of his sins of yesterday, his sins of today and his sins of tomorrow. For Mary, let her give birth without any complications. Amen. That's it folks. You may open your eyes now." Bob hands Mary an invoice of $150.
"What is this?"
"An invoice, for my services."
"What is this? What priest would charge a pregnant woman that much money? You must be out of your mind! In just less than ten minutes you are demanding $150! You will go to hell."
"That is the way it is, mom. The bible says that a man eats where he works. Besides, I gave you and your husband bonuses; I prayed for his sins of yesterday, of today and of tomorrow. Furthermore, you were not part of the prayer request, but I also prayed for your pregnancy."
"Even sins of tomorrow my husband has not yet committed?"
"Look, I'm a very busy man and I know these politicians are thieves."
"Look who is talking!" Mary interjected.
"I know your husband very well. I'm sure he is going to steal again tomorrow, and since I might not have time to come back tomorrow to pray for his soul, I have asked God to forgive him his sins I know he is going to commit tomorrow."
Mary reaches for a checkbook in her bag and writes a check and throws it to Bob while grumbling."
"There is your check. But don't come back here. You are the most expensive church minister I have ever seen in my entire adult life!"
"You are not welcome!"
Bob gleefully picks the check up, opens the door and closes it behind him as he exits the hospital room. Mary looked at Wilbur angrily and shouted: "That was thief number three!" She then switches the lights off.