Last week, I attended a daily Mass in Swahili in a Kenyan coastal town called Malindi. It was an early morning, but the sun was already up and doing its best to burn away the storm clouds trying to take over the sky.
It was already hot, too – though my tolerance for heat, I’m told, is embarrassingly low. The walk from the Jesuit community to the Jesuit parish – St. Charles Lwanga – was a mercifully short one. We passed a handful of small homes on our dusty journey, though no one was out for us to greet.
The church building is new, and the parish community is growing. We turned a corner, and as the church came into view, we could hear the sound of song, voices already awake and clearly tuned to God, though I could not understand the words.
“We’re late,” I said, increasing my stride.
“No,” my Jesuit counterpart, Bryan Galligan, SJ, replied. “The community often gathers to pray before Mass.”