Ex-Addict Turns Entrepreneur
HAVERHILL, Massachusetts — The soft-spoken Brian O. Mohika tearfully recounts his past transgressions, how he lived a double life while repeatedly disappointing the Lord after seeking forgiveness.
“I would raise my hands in the air in worship and fall to my knees at the altar,” Mohika recalls. “But by the end of the day, I would be drunk and high, sick with sin.”
Mohika spent the better part of two decades drunk and high, a period during which he went through a painful divorce, cocaine addiction, and criminal charges. He says Jesus showed up in a 2015 vision that interrupted his suicidal thoughts.
“God said I had to stop drinking and drugging, He wouldn’t do it for me,” explains Mohika, born and raised in Lawrence, Massachusetts. “I had tried over and over to quit. The only way I could was through the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Mohika, 41, celebrated four years of sobriety in September.
“The reason a lot of people relapse is because there is a vacuum when they quit drinking,” Mohika says. “If you don’t fill that vacuum with something else, drinking will come back. I made Jesus my addiction.”
Mohika had a large void to replace. He consumed beer, cigarettes, marijuana, and cocaine excessively. He spent his entire paycheck on drugs, then couldn’t remember the carousing that followed. He’d awaken in women’s homes with no recollection of what happened the night before.
“At the time, I didn’t realize I was destroying my life,” Mohika writes in his recently published book, From Cocaine to Christ. Rock bottom came in 2013 when he lost his driver’s license, got kicked out of nursing school, and faced charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
Mohika says his Dominican-born mother, Paulina Lopez, introduced him to the Lord, after spending 20 years in alcohol and crack addiction herself. He now has a relationship with his sons, Osyris, 18, and Elias, 9. Last year, Mohika married Eunice, who draws on her own difficult past in managing a Facebook encouragement outreach called Resilient Women of Faith.
To break his habit, instead of partying Friday and Saturday nights, Mohika attended church services and read the Bible.
Although he already held radiology and nursing degrees, Mohika says he sensed the Lord directing him to attend Northpoint Bible College in Haverhill.
“This school is so special,” Mohika says. “Jesus restored my whole life.”
What has made the turnaround more impressive is Mohika’s invention of an all-in-one medical undergarment. He works full time as the CEO of CathWear. Mohika says the Lord inspired him when he worked as an interventional radiology specialist to design the discreet catheter management system like shorts with pockets for the draining bags and holes so that tubing is kept out of the way. The devices are sold in pharmacies, online, and directly to physicians.
Mohika is active at New Life Christian Assembly in Haverhill, where he serves as men’s ministries leader. Lead pastor Rick Amendola has seen a transformation in Mohika in the nine years he has known him.
“I have witnessed how the Lord saved him, delivered him, shaped him, uses him, and continues to hone in on his strengths, weaknesses, and talents,” Amendola writes in the foreword to From Cocaine to Christ. “Brian surrendered to the Lord and now is passionate about his faith.”
Currently, Mohika is a student at the Southern New England Ministry Network School of Ministry. Despite his entrepreneurial bent and CathWear’s great potential, he believes the Lord has called him to be an evangelist.
“God has brought to Brian deliverance, healing, new beginnings, and victories,” writes Amendola, 68. “Now a faithful family man, a leader in his local church, a prominent person in the medical field, a well-respected inventor, and well on his way to ministerial credentials, Brian’s story is one of hope and trust in a living and faithful God.”
Photo: Brian Mohika has restored his relationship with his sons Osyris and Elias.