Wholesome and productive were two words we used to describe the day on our way to dinner. A day of two parts.
Since arriving in Malawi for the first time, I have been struck by the warmth of the people of Malawi and this was epitomised this morning on our visit to Stella Maris.
After getting over the initial shock of being picked up at 5.40am, we arrived for 6am mass at Stella Maris and were met by the amazing, powerful voices of the Sisters and girls of Stella Maris secondary school. The girls singing and dancing along to prayer and worship is an experience that I will never forget.
The enthusiasm and warmth was infectious and I very quickly found myself swaying and clapping along. Dancing is definitely something I think we should incorporate into our masses in Glasgow.
At the end of mass,we were asked to introduce ourselves and again were met with a very warm welcome from the many girls from the school who had joined us for mass. After mass, we were very kindly invited to share breakfast with the Sisters and had a chance to chat to them and ask questions about school life at Stella Maris.
We then went a short walk down to the school where we were taken on a tour of the school. It was so uplifting to see the girls and where they studied and lived together at the school. Despite large numbers of the girls sharing bedrooms, they assured me they were ‘ always friends’ which I could actually believe as you could tell the strong bond they all shared.
We spoke to three girls who were celebrating becoming prefects and told us their dreams of becoming a nurse, a lawyer and an astrologer.
The sky is the limit girls…literally for one!
Walking around the school, I was overwhelmed by the number of the girls using their “free time” on a Sunday after their chores to study. The enthusiasm for learning was palpable as we moved around the school.
We then returned back to our ‘home from home’ to get stuck into our work.
We spent the rest of the afternoon preparing our posters and notes for our week’s training. We certainly worked up a sweat chasing the flip chart pages and papers around the balcony as the warm breeze picked up pace.
After many hours of preparation and Michele’s delight at her artwork on the posters, we were ready. We organised our resources into our bags and boxes and headed out for a quick dinner.
As I lie under my mosquito net which resembles the ‘princess bed’ I always wanted as a child with drapes from the ceiling, I am excited to get started on training tomorrow.