19 August 2008

The Wisdom of Baba Nyemba

There had been a lot of petty theft at the Baptist Theological Seminary of Zimbabwe and the surrounding neighbourhood. Whereas previously people freely took shortcuts across each other's property, now everyone was viewed with suspicion. How could the thieves be thwarted without falsely accusing and insulting innocent passers-by?

[The late Saul Nyemba (in the suit) was a teacher at the Baptist Theological Seminary of Zimbabwe when I taught there. He taught me much about Shona culture and life in Zimbabwe when it was Rhodesia. This is another one of my favorite stories. I miss him.]

One morning as students and staff were leaving the chapel and heading to tea, a stranger was seen walking along the drive near some staff houses across the field in front of the chapel. Baba Nyemba waived a broad friendly greeting to the walker.

Some students asked, "Baba Nyemba, who is that?"

Baba Nyemba replied, "I don't know, but he knows that I saw him."

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