So far away yet so much the same – Worship in Maradi

So far away yet so much the same. On Sunday, the Remember Niger Coalition group attended a church service on the outskirts of Maradi. We were greeted by ushers who seated us; women on the left and men on the right side of the church. The voices were raised as the congregation sang to The Lord.   The men’s choir treated us first to a rousing song. After some words from the moderator, the main choir led the next worship section singing A Cappella while using sheet music and harmonizing. It was just like my choir back home. The congregation was encouraged to open their bibles and read along as the gospel was read. The sermon followed with humorous points to keep the congregation engaged.  Just like home, all visitors were introduced and Ibrahim proudly introduced all four of us.  The congregation rose and sang, clapped and swayed to a rhythmic anthem as the congregation prepared to exit. The minister closed with a prayer and followed behind the choir as he led the congregation from the church and onto the church grounds. Parishioners and guests greeted each other on the grounds. The only thing missing that point was a good fellowship luncheon. However, later that evening there was a wonderful opportunity for fellowship when were invited to dinner at Ibrahim’s home along with the director of the Tsibiri Boarding School. It was a great day and a day very similar to a Sunday back home.