John 7: 24.
As I come to the end of my Integration time here at my placement site in Mozambique, I am hurt each and every single day by the news from all over the world, and I say, “It Is Too Much”.
First, inflation in Mozambique, which is due to some unsolved government problems. The marginalized people are the ones paying the price for inflation, especially those who do not earn much weekly and monthly and also those who sell in shops. Most shops are closing, and those who sell in the shops end up unemployed because there is no employment at this particular time, and they do not have connections.
Second, the killing of Albinos because of rituals and their skin color. Some say that society doesn’t need them, and they should not be alive. I wonder how a human being can treat his neighbor with such hatred and still be at peace at night.
One day I decided to go for a walk to the other side of the bay, and I came across a government school on which these words were written in Portuguese: “Stop Killing Albinos.” I so felt down, and I almost cried because I did not think that I could find people who cared about Albinos that much. I have never had an Albino friend in my life, but I have been close to some in school and church.
Third, the killing of black people by white people in America. I wonder why the killing is going viral and why it is even happening. I used to say that Black Americans do not think straight because they could just avoid racism by leaving America and coming back to Africa where they belong, but as I grow older I have totally changed my opinion about that. You know why? Most of them have been there for years and do not know where they came from. America is their only home now, and that is where they belong, just like the white Americans. If they come to Africa, they will look like foreigners because of their behaviors and the culture they have adopted, which is different compared to that of Africans.
Finally, as I count down the days I have left in this place, I realize how hard it will be for me to say goodbye and to move back to my own country, which feels like a foreign land to me now. Being away has made me feel like home is wherever I am. I fit in so deeply here, whether I like it or not. How can I not fit in when there is life everywhere I go? There are mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, uncles and aunts, grandparents, and friends. Fitting in is easy, so it feels dangerous to leave.
As I will leave soon, my prayers are with all those whom I’ve met, engaged with, and those whom I never got a chance to meet because of circumstances and time. Know this: “I may not come back here or may not be with you physically, but you will always be in my heart, and my prayers will always be with you.” Even if I do not name you one by one in my prayers, but instead pray for the whole country, I am praying for you.
Otshi Rose Ombaku
GMF International, Class of 2014-2016
The Center of Hope