By Sanpha Sesay, The Texas Chief
Dallas, Texas; December 9, 2015: Sunday, December 6th, marked another milestone in the United States as Sierra Leoneans in Texas joined together in fellowship thanking the almighty God for His divine intervention in ending the Ebola epidemic that took thousands of Sierra Leonean lives in the country. In the wake of the trail of havoc left behind by arguably the most virulent epidemic ever in Sierra Leone, and the tremendous challenges it poses to the socio-economic development of the country, religious clerics in Texas––Islam and Christian––offered their devout prayers to lift up the vibrant community praying for all those who lost a relative to the Ebola scourge.
Pastor Florence Bangura, Imam Alhaji Salieu Bah & ASLOT Chief, Reuben Ndomahina
For over 18 months the Ebola virus exacted enormous burden on the people of Sierra Leone and West Africa. It was only through the will of God that the carnage ended. According to Kar Beth, “the basic human response to God is not fear and trembling, not guilt and dread, but thanksgiving.” That is why the Association of Sierra Leonean Organizations in Texas (ASLOT), the umbrella organization in Texas decided to galvanize all Sierra Leoneans to come together and thank God for ending this dreadful disease.
ASLOT believe that praying together as a unified community can bring us into God’s presence through a fuller dimension of peace and unity. They also believe that it was also morally righteous to gain wisdom from the most high, and continue to seek His face for divine healing, which many Sierra Leoneans need at this time.
2. Among them were Lawyer Andrew Kaikai
It was a day of somber and thoughtful reflection in the community regarding the devastation of the Ebola virus caused in West Africa. Many in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex came out to offer prayers for the victims, survivors, and for the disease not to return again.
The theme of the interfaith thanksgiving service was ‘The Power of Thanksgiving’. Religious preachers from both Christianity and Islam believed that there is nothing the community can ask for again from God but to praise and thank him. It provided the community with an opportunity to spend the evening invoking the name of God and asking for forgiveness and mercy. Participants felt connected to a community of friendship, joyousness, shared experiences, and kindness after listening to words of encouragements from Imams and Pastors.
Several organizations and clubs were represented during this event but it was the newly formed Mandingo Association of Dallas Fort Worth that displayed a solid show of solidarity and patriotism during the event. The Mandingo association believes that the interfaith prayer for the down of dreadful disease, Ebola is part of their civic responsibilities to come out in love and display a sense of belonging within the Sierra Leone community in Dallas Fort Worth. The event ended with refreshments for all and all participants embraces each other with joyfulness.