Mrs. Zulu

22 Oct

Lori, Mrs. Zulu, and I
Grace Lutheran Church is a part of the Lac Qui Parle (say it with me: lack-a-par-ul) conference in the larger southwestern Minnesota synod of the ELCA who partners with a region of the Lutheran church in South Africa. For the past two weeks, we have welcomed two representatives of that region to stay with us in our conference. I had the joy of getting to know and spending much time with Mrs. Zulu, a member of the Lutheran church in South Africa, a mom to three, and a police officer by trade.
Mrs. Zulu, and the gentleman, B.M. from South Africa, spent time in various congregations and towns within the Lac Qui Parle conference. Mrs. Zulu came to Dawson for a weekend and I was her ride. We had some generally awkward conversation in the half hour drive. She came to church to Grace last Sunday and spoke, sang, and answered questions from the children.
Last Sunday was crazy for me. I preached at the early service. Schmoozed at the pastor’s appreciation coffee hour. Assisted at the second service. Led an early afternoon service at the care center in town. THEN, Mrs. Zulu, Lori, and I made our way to St. Cloud to attend a theological conference for three days.
In the two hour car ride, we bonded. Lori and I learned a lot about Mrs. Zulu and her life in South Africa. We heard about how she met her husband and how her children begged her to bring home “USA clothes.” I’ll admit, I was tired and in the back seat of a moving vehicle. I nodded off a few times but if Mrs. Zulu sensed I wasn’t listening, she would say, “Linze! Linze!” until I responded, assuring her I was still listening and awake.
From that point on, Mrs. Zulu stayed close to Lori and I for the remainder of the conference. She liked us. ūüėČ It was great to hang out with her and get to know her in the short time we were together. As of early this afternoon, Mrs. Zulu and B.M. were on a plane, returning to South Africa after a successful trip, sharing their lives and how the partnership of our churches enriches all of us, on each side of the ocean.
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