Growing up, children often dream dreams they may never remember again except there is a finger of God associated with the dream. Young Sebastian Kwaku Apia from Nyinahin Community in Ashanti, Ghana, was no different. While in his early teens he ranted with peers on what to become in future. While his peers chose lawyers, doctors and so on, he chose to become a priest. Prior to that period, he had never seen a black priest before. However, the white priest of his local parish went on vacation and for the first time in his life he saw a black priest, Rev. Fr. Stephen Danso who stood in the gap while the white Priest was away. He was highly enthused by the sight of a black priest and so told himself that he too will become another black priest some day. It was about this time that the conversation with his friends ensued. Fortunately for him, his uncle whom he was living with, overheard the conversation with his friends and followed up on it.
Few days later, young Sebastian was shocked when his uncle confronted him with the innocent comment he made demanding to know whether he really wanted to become a priest indeed. Within a very short while, his uncle who was a teacher in another village took him to the Minor Seminary probably for inquiry only to learn that the entrance for new intakes was going to be the next day. Without purchasing a form and other formalities, young Sebastian scaled through all tests and was admitted into; St. Hubert’s Minor seminary, Kumasi from September 1976 through July 21, 1990, when he was ordained a priest under the Diocesan congregation. As a fated apostle, while all others ordained with him were promptly posted to parishes, he was not.
Soon his Bishop, Archbishop Peter k. Sarpong told him he was going to be sent on a mission and he readily accepted to the surprise of the Bishop who queried how he accepted without knowing where. Rev. Fr. Sebastian’s response was; but how can I question my Lordship when on my ordination I have accepted to do and go anywhere you send me. He (the Bishop) laughed and called him a bush boy. He told him he was going to go to Liberia where there was shortage of priests but the war ragging then in Liberia stalled that plan as four times he had been notified to take off and each time, the war intensified so he was put on hold. Within the period, the parish priest of St. Gorge’s Catholic Church, Kuntenase, Ashanti, Ghana went on vacation and so Fr. Sebastian was assigned an acting parish priest from October1990 through March 1991 even as a newly ordained priest.
On his return, Fr. Apia again was sent to another Parish St. Mary’s parish Tepa, Ashanti as assistant parish priest for the first time; but again the Parish priest took ill and the Bishop recalled him making Fr. Apia an acting parish priest. Though St. Mary’s had a lone priest but it had as many as 35 Out-Stations hence Fr. Apia was fully engaged while shepherding the parish. For him again, he saw the hand of God in that assignment as it prepared him for the future even as he says, his role then may be reason why God is favouring him today. One fateful Saturday evening while in St. Mary’s, Fr. Apia was seeing a guest off when the Bishop’s driver breezed in to inform him to see the Bishop unfailingly on Tuesday the following week saying some other priests have been detailed to give him the information but they may have deliberately chosen not to pass the invitation to him so that the bishop would pick holes with him use any of them instead hence he sneaked in to give him the message though
To be Continued NEXT WEEK