A morning call to worship

Wusaraambya men gather to begin the morning worship service.

Church, to the Wusaraambya believers, is a time of fellowshipping and focusing on God. It begins around 10 a.m. or whenever everyone can make it to the river to wash up, put on their only other set of clothes (if they have a spare) and make the trek from scattered homes high up in the surrounding mountain ridges to the little church building.

The ringing of the “bell” – a clanging of a stick against a scrap piece of metal found at a World War II outpost several hours walk away – signals the opening of the church doors around 9:30 a.m. Then the music starts as young men trickle in, chewing on their sweet potatoes and cooking bananas, and strumming eagerly on their guitars to signify the morning call to worship.

Soon, the women begin to join the mix. They sit outside at first, talking and giggling together as they wait for enough women to make their entrance appropriate.

Around 10 a.m. there are enough women to join the men so they eagerly swarm into the church and join with the happy voices of the men in praising God. Soon the church is packed full of men, women and children eagerly expecting to hear God’s Word.

The Bible teachers start the church service with prayer, because the most important part of every church service is talking to God.

The Bible teacher then spends time reviewing a lesson from the week before, making sure that the congregation not only remembers the lesson, but that they have put the lesson into practice throughout the week. Members of the church, both young and old, are invited to give feedback from their lives about how they have applied the message and what challenges they faced.

Next, the Bible teacher proceeds to share theological truth from books like Romans and Ephesians. These messages are delivered completely from memory and are the product of countless hours of study and prayer.