September 29th was Youth Sunday at Irente Lutheran Church. There had to be about 100 children in church. Their ages ranged from maybe 13 or 14 down to five of the small kids from the home - Husseini, Daudi, Furaha, Bahati and Martha, ages 2 to 3.
The gospel was Mark 10: 13-19 when Jesus blesses the little children. Some of the kids presented a little skit. Eleven of the older children were wrapped in robes (11 disciples, minus Judas…maybe no one wanted to be him) and one boy was Jesus. A large group of the younger kids came down the aisle from the back and they re-enacted the gospel story. When the disciples tried to chase the children away, the boy portraying Jesus came to them and placed his hands on each one’s head. It was a very moving presentation. Unfortunately, even after almost two years, our Kiswahili is not good enough to follow all of the words, but it was not necessary.
Of course, the singing is always lively and wonderful. The kids really get into it. The children from the home were the youngest there and started getting antsy after the first hour or so. Tom ended up taking Furaha and Bahati outside before the end of the service.
Prayers were offered for the children and the Sunday School teachers. There are 120 children on the roles at Irente Lutheran Parish.
Sunday School is usually held during the early service in the lower level of the church. We really enjoy listening to the children’s voices throughout the service. Many weeks the singing runs through the sermon. It is great to hear the joy in the children’s voices as they sing. My understanding is that the older children get to play the drums. One of our students told us that Husseini said he can’t wait to be the one who plays the drum.
After church, we walk back to the home with the children and the students. It is fun listening to the kids talk about what they did in class. Here it is all about stories, prayer, and songs. There are no arts and crafts or drawings to bring home. This is one of the things that is not missed by the kids, because it is not expected. With Bible stories, prayers and singing what more do you need?