I have been reflecting on what I saw and experienced in Zimbabwe, the physiological, political and financial needs, the church, the business, the searching for a saviour and the reflections I see in the UK. My reflections bring me to the theme of water. What concerns me is the church has become reliant on models of delivering sanitised spirituality through a Victorian system or a bottled version with exaggerated promises.
Fridges that would typically stock soda’s and juice are empty as there is no one bringing supplies A couple of craft shops remain open and we are amused by a poster stating “The Party Starts Here” yet everywhere is closed and there are few people around.
We drive onwards through the rain. Our driver is from the Harare area and is there able to talk a little about the places we pass. I am struck at one point when he points to an area that looks like an area that is simply a natural area of trees and vegetation. Our driver says that this was a farm that grew Gum Trees, they produce naturally straight poles which are used to construct houses. It is perhaps the first time I have knowingly seen such a farm, the result of the land appropriation of the early 2000's resulting in the exodus of white farmers.
Onwards we travelled for a further 2 hours. More time to close my eyes and rest. As I became more accustomed to my seat I think I did manage to doze off on this occasion for a few moments. I would wake as we stopped for the usual road blocks of cattle, goats and police or occasionally as our driver braked behind a vehicle, unable to overtake because of the traffic (usually a truck) heading in the opposite direction.
Lesson 16: Paying a bride is part of the way of life. Lesson 17: Get away from the tourist areas. Lesson 18: Learn from the locals. Lesson 19: Take a safari and prepare to see nothing but look out for everything.
Lesson 8: Be prepared to wait. Lesson 9: Experience the Victoria Falls. Lesson 10: Crocodile tastes like chicken. Lesson 11: Don't feed the monkeys. Lesson 12:
As I travel I am more than aware of my privilege as a white male with a British passport. I hope I learn some lessons and meet some people that will allow me to make a difference. I hope I am able to use my undeserved privilege for something worthwhile for others.
I am off to Zimbabwe. I will be with a team travelling around visiting churches, a university and meeting various folk. I don't know what to expect. I meet the team I travel with a few hours before we fly and I have to trust we'll get on, that all the plans are made and … Continue reading Zimbabwe
Standing in front of a departure board I enjoy dreaming about the possibilities of all the destinations listed. Standing in the same place looking in the same direction does not mean that everyone is heading to the same destination and neither does it mean they have come from the same place. So it is with the Church and human sexuality. Scripture is being reread, re-examined and studied as those within the Church look at the departure board and ask whether they will stay put or go on a journey. Are we prepared to end up somewhere new or to one day return to the point of departure having experienced more of the wider world?