Today waking up and seeing Taty with her normal smile was pure joy. It was a great way to the start of the day. Today we were off to mass at 8:00 which, since there was a mass at 6:00, we were being picked up at the hotel at almost 8:00.
We arrived at the Cathedral at a couple of minutes before 8:00 and there was still another 20 minutes of mass from the 6:00 am mass before we entered. The music and the people are an amazing experience and there is little that I could put into words that could begin to describe the joy you feel in sitting in a mass with the people of Tanzania. They are so engaged an full of joy.
During the mass, there were many children that kept trying to join us and a person that seemed to have some authority, kept trying to keep them from crowding us. He finally gave up. While kneeling, there was a young boy who kept scooting closer to me in the pew. While praying I thought that a fly had landed my hand and I flicked my wrist but in the corner of my eye saw that it was the young boys hand wanting to touch me. I then smiled and took a photo and then he was almost in my lap the rest of mass.
After mass, we were greeted by many people and I saw many of the friends that I had met before. It was a great experience and did not seem to be 3 hours long. Mass was done in an two hours, then another hour for announcements and recognition of parishioners. Oh, and visitors.
After mass we had a light breakfast and went to get some pepto for Tiana. We then left for Sangerema to attend Fr. Donations Jubilee reception. After a brief conversation with the local police, we arrived in Sangerema and were greeted by many of the priests and their friends.
We connected back with Fr. Matthew, who asked since we had 3 hours before the celebration if we would like to go to his village and meet his family. How could we not want to go? So we were off on another short 20 minute ride.
We arrived at Fr. Bulala’s home and were greeted by his sister and nieces. We then began to discuss also building a stove for his sister and he then called his brother and his brother and sister in law and a friend from the school in Nyampande came. We enjoyed conversation and Matthew and Tatyna began to play a game of soccer with a home=made soccer ball. Fr. Matthew got involved and the village as a whole would stop and look in curiosity as to this group laughing and playing.
We then headed back for the celebration of Fr. Donation of which we were greeted and recognized many times during his celebration. They are so gracious. Tian started to not feel well around 10:15 so we headed back to Geita, 45 minutes away at night. Fr. Matthew suggested I allow them to get a little more rest and we will start our day at 10:00