Our ways of worship: Township v. suburban services

2011-04-23 20:29

At any township church service, one can hear the singing, clapping and even the preacher shouting at the top of his voice from a distance.

But when one enters a suburban church the mood is calm and the preacher doesn’t shout – he ensures he is heard and the singing is humble.

These are the two sets of church services I am faced with when deciding which one to attend on the Sundays I am able to go to church.

When I moved to the western part of Johannesburg six years ago, I had to find a local Presbyterian church.

Luckily, it was just minutes away from my house.

On my first visit to the church I found it very different to how I knew my Presbyterian Church in Matsulu, a township outside Nelspruit, Mpumalanga.There things are happening and it is lively, unlike my new church.

The service here is a lot quieter and calmer and I enjoy every Sunday that I attend.

My boys also love their Sunday school class – especially the juice and cookies.

But when I need some action, some spiritual lifting, and to dance to a familiar hymn, I drive the almost 20km to the Presbyterian Church in Diepkloof, Soweto.

Here, the surroundings and the excitement are similar to my home church (Matsulu) which I grew up with, and it is more thrilling – especially when that familiar hymn is sung, everyone stands up, claps their hands and dances as they wait for the voice of the preacher to reverberate through the building.

Just as my sons prefer the church closer to their home because of its amenities, this one is reserved for me when I feel down and out of touch with myself. Amen.

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