Saturday, July 13, 2019

Holy Spirit: the Great Unifier

We had the tremendous blessing to spend Pentecost in Africa. In the planning stage of the trip the Feast of Pentecost was a shining light on the schedule. Like most of the trip we generally knew the region we would be in each day but the details of what we would do each day were in many ways a surprise. Pentecost fell on our 6th day in Africa and was to be our last full day in Kenya before leaving for Tanzania the following day. As it turned out, we were not only to experience one Mass on Pentecost but two! 

One of the beautiful things about Mass in Kenya is the music which is woven throughout the liturgy. There is also dance. The Mass in Sultan Hamud began with a group of the children singing and dancing in procession up the main aisle of the Church. After Mass in Sultan Hamud we were off to an outstation of the parish. This Church is named after St. Peter and is in a more rural area and is attended by members of the Maasai tribe. 

The congregants were waiting for Fr. Wachira to begin Mass and we quickly took are place for Mass with this the families of St. Peter Church. The Church was much smaller. The songs sung in Maasai were fantastic. We had no idea what they meant but they had a great beat and engaged everyone. At St. Peter's there was also dance and some of the adults and children had interesting large stiff necklaces that were placed one on top of the other and as they danced they moved their bodies in such a way that the necklaces flopped forward and back. This was clearly part of the dance to create a movement that sent the necklaces up and down in such a way. It was all new to us and one of the members of the congregation took our son Asher's hand and brought him out with the others dancing. 
The Apostles experienced Pentecost as a time when people of many different tribes came together and understood each other and heard the message of Christ clearly. We too felt unified in faith despite our different backgrounds. The Holy Spirit is indeed the unifier and we felt in a powerful way unified through the Mystical Body of Christ. After Holy Mass, we spent time with the families. They had prepared an African tea for us. A photo of some of the women sharing this tea with our group is at the top of the post.
There was a group preparing food as well for us which was a surprise. We had not expected lunch and yet it seemed at each turn we were experiencing African hospitality. 
We did bring some gifts to share with the children. We brought handmade rosaries, scapulars and miraculous medals. We saw lots of smiles as each child took a miraculous medal.

The Children's Rosary at St. Peter's Church meets each week on Saturday. The children shared with us that they like to pray the Rosary and have now begun praying the Rosary more at home, too.
We were so grateful for the warm welcome we received from the children at St. Peter's Church. Today, as it is Saturday, the children would have met in their Children's Rosary prayer group. We too held a Children's Rosary in West Hartford, Connecticut USA. Through prayer we feel in a special way connected to them. 

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Don't forget to unify prayers with the children during their meetings. A schedule of meetings is present on our website. By clicking "Join in Prayer" you can add your gold flashing light to our View from Heaven map.

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