Monday, June 1, 2015

Kadazan-Dusun Harvest Festival

This is the first time for some weeks now that I felt refreshed on a Monday morning. I only preached once in the first service yesterday and there was no meeting in the afternoon. My wife and I also spent a pleasant evening with another SIB church celebrating Harvest Festival (Kaamatan) which is a public holiday here in Sabah, a Kadazan-Dusun festival, essentially a thanksgiving feast for crops harvested in the past months. We feasted and danced the night away.
Quite a sight to behold with elders and deacons and their wives in their traditional costumes and Sumazau dance. I was given the honour to pray for those who brought seedlings before the planting season begins in a couple of months. I remember how the Israelites only pray for rain during the Feast of Tabernacles in order that they can start plowing and sowing in the October season.
There are some breath-taking views around Ranau and I drove into a number of villages while my wife strolls along the monthly Tamu (market) nearby. One stallkeeper who saw me snapping away with my camera told me to come back early in the morning if I wanted to catch a clear view of the majestic Mount Kinabalu.

I have survived 5 months of ministry in a semi-rural church which is 99% Kadazan-Dusun. I don't speak their language and yesterday for the first time I said a few words in Dusun wishing my congregation a Blessed Harvest Festival. I preached a Labour Day sermon meant for 1st May as I thought I should do so before the month celebrating workers' rights and contribution to church and society comes to an end.

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