I am just 12 years old. Africa too often pants with the need for rain, and today is no exception. It is a very hot Easter Sunday morning in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, and the church’s windows are wide open in an effort to let in a breeze, but this too is hot, and smells of the ubiquitous red earth outside. We children are listless and sticky on the hard church benches. I look at my little brother in envy. He, at least, is allowed to put down his head and sleep. But I am the eldest – I am expected to sit up and listen. The droning of the preacher (my pastor-dad 😊) is accompanied by the shrill buzzing of the sun beetles in the trees outside, and my eyes grow ever heavier.

Suddenly, a playful wind finds in the back doors, also open for air. Behind my dad, hanging from the ceiling, are 2 heavy velvet curtains that screen the baptismal font when not in use. In front of the curtains are 2pedestals that form part of the font wall that reaches above the heads of the elders sitting behind the preacher. Huge floral arrangements are always in place there, and today they consist of Easter lilies. Hmmm…Perhaps it is their heavy scent making the elders drowsy too.  

But now I’m really sitting up. Now I’m wide awake, because we, the congregation, can see that with every puff of wind, the curtains bellow outa little more behind those humungous vases.  

Yes, my friend – it was exactly as you imagine! Gone was sleepiness, gone was dignity, and sadly, gone was my father’s eloquent preaching!

Of course, this is unlikely to happen these days. We no longer have open doors and windows that allow the wind to blow through!

I wish you all a blessed Holy Week.