Last night, amidst the noise and fear surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic and the uncertainty we are faced with, both individually and collectively, I received a clip of Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng’s press address. In closing, he called for South Africans to face this nationwide challenge with prayer.
A prayer all South African’s know is our National Anthem.
Could the singing of our national anthem at our sports events be one of the keys that has unlocked unity in our sport?
Our national anthem is a prayer understood by all, regardless of race, background or beliefs. It speaks to the heart of every South African – God protect South Africa; God bless our people. It is a unifying force.
The power of singing:
A few years ago, my husband and I were attending a funeral near Greytown. The person’s daughter had worked with us for several years. A small girl of about seven years old, who was sitting near me, was heartbroken at the loss of her grandmother and was crying with heart-wrenching sobs. One of the elders walked quietly over to her, touched her on the shoulder and asked her to sing. Her small voice joined in the singing of a prayer and gradually her tears dried up.
Music has traditionally been an integral part of the way of life for many South Africans. Richard Dowden in his book Africa: Altered States, Ordinary Miracles has this to say: “If music were wealth, Africa would be rich… African music catches a spirit, a profound talent for living, enjoying life when it is good and surviving the bad times.”
Imagine a South Africa where we pause as a nation, every morning at 8 am, to sing together our National Anthem.
Imagine that Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika is sung over all radio stations and TV Networks, in every business, all public enterprises and in every home each morning at eight.
Imagine that, we, the people of South Africa, stop as a nation to pray together every morning with words that all of us know.
Imagine that we unify as a people by singing our national anthem, and those of us who are sick, frightened, or isolated, we will not feel alone.
Imagine Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika reverberating through the skies and beyond.
Sound the call to come together, and united we will stand. Let us live and strive for freedom, in South Africa our land.
God Bless Africa.