Apostle Anslem Madubuko is the General Overseer of the Revival Assembly, a Pentecostal church. In this interview, the 59-year-old remarried pastor from Ihiala Local Government area of Anambra State opens up on his ministerial work and how he was bombarded by women when his wife, Connie died in 2012
When did your wife die?
She died in 2012. I didn’t expect her to die when she did and I was not in the country. I left Nigeria on a Wednesday night and we still spoke when I got to the airport. The next thing I heard on Friday was that she had passed on.
What caused her death?
She was not sick; it was a sudden death. If she had been ill, I wouldn’t have left her. As a strong woman that she was, she didn’t show signs of weakness as well. Our family doctor of over 25 years did his best but told me there was no life in her any longer.
I was more confused than annoyed when I heard the news of my wife’s death. I was too shocked to feel anything. She was in her 50s when she died; we were age mates. The only time I felt bad was the day of her burial as it dawned on me that she was really dead. But before then, I kept thinking she would wake up because she was really a strong woman. I couldn’t go to the mortuary to see her, but I had to see her during the lying-in-state.
How did you comfort your children during the period?
My children are strong kids. They had all finished their university education in Canada when their mother died. We are a free and happy family. Whenever we are together, they don’t relate to me as their father.
How did your children react to your decision to remarry?
My children were happy when I told them I wanted to remarry. They knew I would be in the hands of a good woman. When my wife died, they didn’t want me to be left alone; they were always checking on me. In a way, I was disturbing them because they couldn’t live a day without worrying about me.
But it was God who told me to remarry even though I did not take another wife. I even said it on the pulpit that I would not remarry. But God, who saw things I didn’t see, told me I must marry and marry fast. Now, I know why He said it and I thanked God I followed His direction.
Were you not worried that people could condemn you for remarrying a year after your wife’s death?
Of course, my decision to remarry generated a lot of attention from the public but I don’t care about such a thing. When my heart doesn’t condemn me, I don’t care. I don’t need to impress everyone. I don’t need to prove anything to anyone because I owe only God my life. Those close to me knew I was led by God.
When my wife passed on, every woman wanted to marry me. I was getting text messages from different women, who were telling me that God told them I was their husband. I got messages from members of my church and other women. If I had stayed unmarried for two years, I cannot imagine what would have happened to me. When I finally remarried, many single women and even married ones left the church. This is not a joke; it happened. I thank God I didn’t promise anyone marriage or was dating anyone; I didn’t owe anyone anything. Also, I didn’t need to marry anyone recommended to me.
Why did you settle for a Kenyan when you had many options?
I knew the lady many years ago when I went to preach in Mombasa, Kenya. Then, my first wife was still alive and I told my friend that I liked the way she sang and carried herself. They spoke well about her and told me her father was a bishop. Later, I invited her team to Nigeria to sing in my church and people loved them. At that point, there was nothing between us.
But many people believed we were having a secret affair even when my wife was alive, but I didn’t go out with her or touch her until we married. I also admired the fact that she did not trouble me for marriage like many others.
How did she react when you told her about your marriage plans?
When I told her I wanted to marry her, she felt it was strange. I was yet to know her well too. She told me I was too old for her. She said I was more like a mentor. It was God who convinced her and her family. How many fathers would allow their daughters to go to Nigeria for marriage? They read many negative things about us daily. Also, she was a single and young lady while I was a widower with three kids. There are many things that didn’t make sense naturally. But her father is a man of God and God touched him. I thank God it was her because I couldn’t have chosen anyone better.