8.4.07

حقاً قام في افريقيا

As I have mentioned before, I have been enjoying attending the Maronite church here in Dakar, and this Passion season was the first time I experienced Holy Week in a rite other than the Melkite one. May God forgive me.

Palm Sunday, or شعنينة, demonstrated once again how "les Libano-Syriens" here have retained a strong attachment to their origins. As is customary, everyone showed up, especially the children, in their finest clothes. Shanineh has always been a bit of a day to show off, if I dare say.

On "Sad Friday" I also had the opportunity to attend. The place was packed - I got the feeling that this service has a particularly high profile each year. A Senegalese Minister was in attendance (cannot remember which Ministry), plus the Ambassador of Lebanon (and several other diplomats from that country), the Russian Ambassador, and the Romanian Ambassador. A high ranking Catholic clergyman from the Diocese of Dakar also played a prominent role in the service.

The highlight though, I must say, was a wonderful rendition of the Melkite hymn "al-yom uliqa" by a, male cantor (a difference from the version by Sister Marie Keyrouz) with the lights turned off.

Unfortunately for me, I misread the schedule and thus missed the midnight mass for Easter Sunday. No hajmeh this year!

2 comments:

syrienne_chicago said...

just a comment

Palm Sunday, or شعنينة, demonstrated once again how "les Libano-Syriens" here have retained a strong attachment to their origins

isn't it ironic that Les Libano-Syriens can retain strong attachment to their origins when they're away from their countries but can't feel the same towards one another when they are there!!!

George Ajjan said...

I guess that depends upon the person and the circumstances. Friends in Damascus told me there was not a house empty of war-weary citizens of Lebanon during the Israeli bombardments last summer.