05 December 2011

05 December 2011 - Xhosa Culture and the 11th Article of Faith

November is over! Already?!

December is very very big here in South Africa, because it's also in summer. I'm told people generally celebrate Christmas and New Years on the beach.

In response to my mom's e-mail I did get the Halloween package. That's all so far. We have another package probably waiting at the post office for us but currently we are in East London again.

Why are we in East London? A combined tri-Zone Conference and Christmas party. I am very excited to get to see Elder Barker, my first companion again.

I'm sorry I'm taking so few pictures! I was going to take more, then I took an arrow to the knee.

I think I can take this opportunity to talk about what I know about a part of traditional Xhosa culture so far. Just about everyone is Christian but they also believe in a form of ancestor worship. There are traditional ceremonies that sometimes involve slaughtering a cow or goat. Also the brewing of homemade traditional beer is often involved. They pour it on the ground for the ancestors, you see. If someone has a dream about ancestors they go to a sangoma, called in English a witch doctor or traditional healer, and they say what the ancestors want. Usually it's beer and expensive liquor. For example, if some bees make a hive on your door, it means your ancestors need beer. They say the consequences of not performing these traditional rituals can involve angry ancestors causing sickness or even death.

Frankly I don't see how they see Christianity and the traditional things can work together.  But we have the 11th Article of Faith.

Click here to read all 13 Articles of Faith
#11. We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.
Love you all, but I'm out of time!

-Elder Tekulve

Ether 12:27
27. And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

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