Going to church for 3 hours was never a desire of mine, but I have never laughed, smiled, danced, and sang at the top of my lungs (not well, mind you) as much as I did during those 3 hours. The happiness, the joy, the faith, the love, and the hope was overflowing out of the small sanctuary and was something beyond inspiring. I have never felt God’s presence within a community as much as I did being surrounded by the villagers, dressed in their best and greeting us warmly. In the words of Liz, the best word to describe it was truly agape. It was pure undeniable love, hope, and belief that even in the hardest of times, God will provide. Just as our reading taught us, even when we struggle and begin to sink, God will always be with us. In Malawi we are surrounded by those who have nothing and struggle day to day to survive, to feed and protect their families, and yet they have the most faith and joy in God’s grace. You will never know a stranger in Malawi, only friends. My poor singing is nothing to be sought after, but seeing the room light up when we started to sing our song in Chichewa is something I will cherish forever. We were truly marching in the light of God (Hallelujah!).
Written by: Rachel Hesse, Xavier Nursing Student