This past weekend we traveled to Mafakathini, KwaZulu Natal.
Gogo (Grandma) Mnikathi passed away and we went to be with the family. I was asked to facilitate at the funeral. The Mnikathi family are very precious to me. When we moved into the area in 2009, this family was the first to open their hearts and home to me and Andra. Gogo experienced three strokes over time. We visited her in hospital with the family. The last stroke was fatal.

Visiting Gogo in Edendale Hospital.
Some of the Mnikathi family members and Andra at the hospital.

The funeral proceedings stretched over three days. What a blessed time was it not for all involved. On Friday evening we went to “Duduza”, that is to “comfort” the bereaved family. There is time to speak with the members of the family and have a devotion. We gathered in the big round hut (rondavel) for the duduza service.

The bereaved women attending the duduza devotion.

The actual funeral ceremony took place on Saturday morning at 10am. Proceedings lasted well into the afternoon. It is such a privilege to lay a child of God to rest. We only have good memories of Gogo. Speaker after speaker only testified about the good of her life. I could only say “Amen” to all because that is how I knew her as well.

The coffin is opened and people could view the body. She looked so peaceful in death!

About 300 people attended the funeral.

The grave is on the property of the family. Next to the vegetable garden. Gogo is the third family member which I have laid to rest in this garden patch. The grave is covered and cared for by the family as time goes on.

A view of part of Mafakathini town.

On Sunday we had a closing service, mostly for the family. It is very special and a blessing in God to be with His children in their times of sorrow. I am so thankful to God for granting me the grace and mercy to be able to do something meaningful for those He loves and cares for. What would we be without the precious Gospel of Jesus Christ? How will we be comforted, if not comforted by God the Spirit. How will we die, if we don’t die in the Lord and go home to be with our loving heavenly Father?

Soli Deo gloria! To God be the glory!

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