Thursday, March 08, 2007

When praying is easy

Visitors to churches here have no chance of sneaking in to the back row unobserved, as they might do in the UK. Every service we have been to has a time for welcoming visitors, when they have to stand up so that the whole congregation can see them. Inevitably when we are visiting we have to introduce ourselves as well.
A couple of weeks ago at the cathedral, now our home church, one lady was introduced as being from the very north of Rwanda, several hours’ journey away. It was reported that she had recently lost her husband and was left with 8 children. The congregation was asked to pray for her.
Afterwards, we met our friend Kenneth, the Ugandan head of the local primary school. He introduced us to a 7-year-old boy who was going to be living with him. Kenneth is single and shares his house with a fellow teacher. It turned out that this was one of the sons of the widow we had prayed for earlier. Her husband had been a good friend of Kenneth and had asked him to look after the boy when he died. The reason for her visit to Cyangugu was to bring her son to Kenneth and he has now settled in to living here.
This kind of situation is not uncommon here and it illustrates the very different nature of family life. It also reminds me that sometimes praying is a lot easier than acting.

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