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A long time coming

 

Since I’ve been doing CASH for Comments this past week, as you may have guessed, I’ve been thinking a lot about my time in Zimbabwe. I was only there for a couple of weeks, but it was a powerful time. One day in particular stands out above the rest. I’ve already told you one story from that day when I shared about Shelton, Margaret & Concilia. But earlier that day, I experienced something that I’ll never forget. I photographed a funeral.

We weren’t supposed to document a funeral. We were supposed to go visit a young woman name Setty who was suffering from AIDS. I thought I’d be taking photographs of a sick young woman who was holding on to hope. But, she died the night before we were to go see her. And so, instead of interviewing Setty, we photographed her funeral.

Setty’s Mother was her only surviving relative in her immediate family. Setty was 28 years old.


Every man in the family and in the community helps with the funeral; each taking turns helping with the casket, shoveling the red dirt, or places stones on top of the grave.



as the women sing and pray.

It’s taken me a year to pull myself together, and pull this slideshow together. I hope it touches you even half as much as being there changed me.

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Comments
 
laura says:

I am speechless Krista, I want to say it was very moving. Grief over tragic death is universal, espcially a tragic death due to AIDS. I applaud your courage for going on missions to record this and raise awarenss.

jessica says:

good afternoon Krista!

jessica says:

would you believe that I’ve never watched one of your slideshows before?

jessica says:

i usually just look at your posted photos and read your lovely thoughts

jessica says:

and now i know i missed out on watching all your other slideshows

jessica says:

is the soundtrack a live recording from the funeral?

jessica says:

i think i have been desensitized to much of the world’s suffering, i’ve not been able to grasp more than a tiny speck of God’s heart for all the world.

jessica says:

there are deep spiritual roots in africa… and with such suffering. did the people you talked to struggle with reconciling their pain with the goodness of God? especially the kids?

jessica says:

our pastor has been to various countries in Africa many times for SBC’s int’l mission board… he said he’s spent time with churches where worship service lasts hours and hours because though we see them as bound by suffering, in many ways they are more free from being bound by the things that we know… time, blackberries, personal agendas. and that freedom keeps them from keeping God within the hour or two of Sunday service alone.

jessica says:

can you tell us how your photographs are being or will be used by FVI? and also the Hope organization in Haiti? i’d love to know =)

jessica says:

THANKS FOR THE PHOTOS and for making it so easy for us to join you in this effort.

jessica says:

God hardly ever chooses the easy way though, so who knows, perhaps one day, we commenters will join you in a more difficult way to love people far away.

Jennifer says:

So I’m going to come out of the woodwork and comment :)

Anonymous says:

Wow… that is powerful. Thank you for sharing it with us.

~Katie Keith

Jamie Sanfilippo says:

Truly the most beautiful people in the world…. even in the midst of their tradgedy.

Jamie Sanfilippo says:

Hey Kirsta,

another comment… another dollar. :)

But a question, more than a comment. If you recall, we “chatted” on each others’ blogs awhile ago. We are soon (1 month from now) moving to Southern Africa to work with MCC and The Meeting House.

As I start thinking about our official blog, I’m wondering if you would be willing to donate the use of a few photos of Zimbabwe to put together into a header for it. I would be happy to give you a byline in the corner if you’d like.

If you are interested, let me know, and I’ll look through and let you know of a few photos I’d like, or at least, types of photos. I’m thinking a panoramic or two of landscape as well as a couple “people” shots.

drop me a line at jamie.sanfilippo@themeetinghouse.ca

peace.
jamie

Julianne says:

Krista,
These are beautiful photos… many good friends in them. If it’s okay with you I’d love to post a link from my blog. Maybe I can get a few more dollars! :)

Julianne Percy :)

George says:

wow! incredible

Allison says:

Thank you!

ben, tam, and rowyn smith says:

I’m a “Julianne Percy” comment recruit. Thanks for this. You definitely have a gift.

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