Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Three days, two funerals...

Since Saturday we have attended two funerals. One for a 15 year old girl who committed suicide and the other for a woman from Chemelil. Luo funerals are very different then the typical one in America (at least the ones I've attended.) They are very lively, and seem to me much like a church revival meeting. There is music, singing, dancing, testimonies and preaching. Both funerals were at the grave site which was beside the home. Burial at the home is also a common Luo practice.

Every funeral requires a government official to be present. That could be anything from an MP (member of Parliament) down to a local chief. The funeral on Sunday had a chief, a county officer and the provincial Governor.The provincial Governor is shown in this photo. All of these men were "long winded" and the last one was cut off by the band starting to play. That was a polite way of ending the campaigning (elections are soon.)

Here is Pastor Boaz praying over the coffin (bottom center) as it is being placed into the grave. I have never been to a funeral where they actually lowered the coffin into the ground and buried it...this was erry to say the least. As the coffin was being buried the mood quickly changed and women began to wail loudly and passionately as they ran from the grave. I will not forget this experience!

Although I was told that I could photograph the funeral activities, and I did some, I felt uneasy about it. I am sure there will be several more during our stay (we have 3 weeks left.)

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