An Easter to Remember

Happy Easter everyone.  It is Easter Sunday afternoon here and Ruthie is taking a nap, but we have already had a full day!

Easter Sunday in our garden.  Notice the African version of shoes has become popular with the girls!  We were blessed with perfect weather.

Easter Sunday in our garden. Notice the African version of shoes has become popular with the girls! We were blessed with perfect weather.

After attending Church on the Ridge we left with Amy, Adrian and Jeremiah to attend the end of the Zulu service at the church where Amy’s father is a Pastor (Umfundisi).  Masakane (“let us build together”) is the church we visited several weeks ago in the township of Mpumalano.  Their Easter celebration starts Thursday evening with services every day and night until Easter.  Yesterday as part of the service the men slaughtered a lamb to be eaten today after church.

Too bad we missed this!

Too bad we missed this!

Unfortunately we missed the first two HOURS of singing, but were still there for a sampling, and the sermon.

Which of these things is not like the others?!

Which of these things is not like the others?!

A highlight for me was when they asked for different groups of people to go down front to dance during a song – first moms, then kids, then fathers.  By the time I figured out what was happening it was too late for me to join, but it was fun to watch.  Unfortunately the number of “legitimate” fathers was very small for such a large group of people.  I think there were only four men up front in addition to the two pastors.  This is one problem plaguing the Zulu church, AIDS is another, as is ancestor worship.  Zulus who claim to be Christians often do not see any conflict with also worshiping their ancestors – it is a very integral part of daily life.  This church has clearly opposed the practice and follows closely to Biblical teaching.

After the service the church feeds everyone a feast which is anticipated all year.  The masses eat in the gymnasium where the service was held, but we were invited to be honored guests in the sanctuary.  As a result, Brian was invited to join the men in eating the special meat… look carefully to see teeth!

Lamb head and hooves.  The men ate the innerds last night

Lamb head and hooves. The men ate the innerds last night

Brian avoided the ear, but instead was given some of the lamb's cheek.  He said it wasn't bad!

Brian avoided the ear, but instead was given some of the lamb's cheek. He said it wasn't bad!

The generosity of these people was moving.  They gave us everything they had, and they don’t have much.  The squalor of the surrounding area is gut wrenching, as are the stories of the people sharing the seats around us.  During the service we sat toward the back, so we were the last adults to pass the offering plate.  It had many coins in it, which could not have totaled R50 ($5).  It was pure joy for the Americans in the back row to add bills to the plate.  It made us think about the many ways we easily waste money in the US… What could our typical monthly entertainment budget buy these people?  What about the cost of things we buy to decorate our house for Easter/spring?   What about our house… does every child really need her own bedroom?  Do we need a guest room?  Study?  Another couch and more knick knacks?

Zulu famous bread

Famous Zulu bread

What does it mean to really serve others, to be thankful for every breath God gives us, and for salvation?

Although there was no coloring of eggs (all eggs are brown here!) no Easter Bunny or jelly beans, this was certainly an Easter to remember.

easter-day-girl

easter-day-brother-and-sister

Advertisements

3 Responses to “An Easter to Remember”


  1. 1 Kylie April 15, 2009 at 1:10 am

    Wow! That truly would be an Easter to remember. How did the girls handle the sheep stuff? What a great experience. That would be a neat way to see what heaven will be like with all the different cultures represented. We miss you and love you.

  2. 2 carole van housen April 15, 2009 at 9:41 pm

    That sounds like an awesome Easter! It was very moving to read all you experienced. Loved the pictures – so interesting and encouraging to see all looking so well. The girls look so happy and cute; right at home in barefeet! Miss you all and love you.
    Mom & Dad


  1. 1 Becoming a Vegan « South African Tea Time Trackback on June 6, 2009 at 11:14 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s





%d bloggers like this: