Life, Death, Ebola. And Church.

Ebola PreventionIn light of the tragic Ebola outbreak in West Africa and beyond, we are learning some essential facts about this virus:  Those who have died from Ebola are more contagious than those living with Ebola.

Burial practices are sacred and long-standing but people will literally die if they don’t change.

What has happened for generations:  Loved ones gather around the body and family members of the same gender wash the dead body thoroughly before wrapping it in a burial cloth and then placing the body into a village grave.

What must happen now in order to save lives:  Officials in haz mat suits take the body which is then either cremated or buried in a cemetery devoted to Ebola victims away from the home village.

Imagine the spiritual upheaval – not only from the rampant death in communities, but also from the inability to continue practicing an important custom of their faith.

So here is my terrible metaphorical connection:  What would we in the church alter about our practices and customs if we realized that they were killing us? (Because some of them are.)

Image by Abbas Dulleh

4 responses to “Life, Death, Ebola. And Church.

  1. Fencing the table…


  2. Amen. Also: Having first time guests stand up and talk. Also: Sharing prayers concerns as if everybody knows who we are talking about (e.g. “Martha’s back in the hospital. And pray for Tom who lives next to Sally.”)


  3. Not using our buildings for other than “our” use.


  4. Pingback: This Week’s Links « Timothy Siburg

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