In Her Own Words
She was born on the 2nd of February, 1972 at Iviukhua village, Etsako East Local Government Area, Agenegbode, Edo State, into a devout Muslim family, belonging to the Ahmadiyya sect of Islam. Bekisu, as she was named, (this is a localized form of the Arabic name, Bilkis, which is also localized among the Yoruba Muslims as Bilikisu), had her primary and secondary education in Okpodi Ukhua primary school, and Egori Grammar school, both at Agenegbode, though she finished up her primary education in Araromi primary school, Araromi, Lagos State.
She grew up to be very devoted Muslim girl, promoting the religion with all her strength. She studied the Al Qur’an concomitantly with her secondary education. She was the leader of the Nasrats (Muslim girls), and secretary to the Lajnas (Muslim women), travelling with them for Islamic conferences and other activities. During her secondary school days, she could spend her whole break time debating with Christians, and demonstrating how Jesus was only a prophet like others, and that Prophet Muhammad was the greatest and the Khatama Nabiim, the Seal of all the prophets!
Bekisu continued this zeal for the laws of Muhammad after her secondary education, and was preparing to go and do the same in higher institution when she was ‘wooed’ and captured by Jesus Christ of Nazareth, through the Holy Spirit and the sacred Scriptures, and she immediately began to proclaim, with all her might, that Jesus was the Messiah, the Son of God! She was still in what looked to her now like a dream and trance, when just as a catechumen, she began to desire with an indescribable fire, to give her whole life to God, though she knew not how she was to do it. She was baptized on 24th December, 1994, taking the name Monica.
She was subsequently helped to discern her vocation to the Consecrated Life. She was admitted into the religious formation in the Congregation of the Sisters of the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus in 1996. Sr. Paulyn Mary (her name in religion, which she took on entering the Novitiate, having compared her life with that of St. Paul) made her first Profession of Vows on August 15 1999, and her perpetual Profession was on 15th August, 2006. She has served in different capacities in her religious institute, where her gifts were quickly recognized and developed.
She was sent on further studies after her final profession, and she studied sacred Theology and foundation in Philosophy at the Spiritan International school of Theology (SIST), Enugu; and Catholic Institute of West Africa (CIWA), Port Harcourt from 2007 to 2012. She is endlessly grateful to God for his love and mercy upon her life from her conception till this moment; for all the gifts he has given her, especially the gift of knowledge of Himself. To the Father of all life, through Jesus Christ the Redeemer, in the Holy Spirit the sanctifier, be glory now and forever. Amen!