Friday, November 30, 2012

D-20 days... Community gatherings

We do get together as a community every Monday morning for general info-exchange, every Sunday night for a Service and also every Thursday night for worship. Every now and then we move these Thursday night happenings from the International Lounge to the dock. Though last year we had much more space on the dock to eat, sit, dance, socialize and pray together, we still managed to have a great time.

They serve dinner (grilled hot dogs and salads) on the dock at 5 pm so you can imagine the length of the food line. Around 4 pm they placed random items at reception and each time somebody went down the gangway they were encouraged to pick up something and carry it down. :) Waaaaay to go, chaplains! :)

Sitting outside to have a meal is always special - even more so when you can share it with 400 crew members, 200 local day workers and some of our patients! Many crew has their own chairs, but they also provided benches and some plastic chairs from the ship so we can all sit - well, some chose to climb up to the landies or just open the pick-up truck and do tailgating; :)

As night falls the music starts to get louder. Sadly Darren cannot sit with me as he is responsible for the sound tonight. The worship group starts with some slow songs in French, but we soon end up all dancing to the rhythm of the "Tam-Tams". Crew mixed with day workers dance in circles; while the white kids look hmmm... funny doing the African moves, the locals do it naturally.

Jabulani is OUR SONG - originated from South Africa the ship kind of adopted this song titled "Rejoice, Africa!" . You cannot sit and sing this song at the same time. You must not only stand, but dance as Ryan demonstrated (yellow t-shirt, legs straight up in the air).

A local pastor came up not to preach, but to say thank you and encourage us to keep shining for Jesus in this land. Profound, yet powerful words.

We ended up staying till 8 pm. The worship band started to sing less religious and more upbeat songs and soon the enetire dock was one big dance floor. Pretty amazing! Despite the humid air we all jumped and moved to those crazy African beats! Awesome night!

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