Drums in African LDS Church Services

This blog has, for the last year, advocated the use of drums in LDS Church services, particularly those in Africa.  I was encouraged when this same message was expounded in bycommonconsent.com.  In a postscript to an article about Africa, SteveP writes:  “One more rant.  Can we please add drums to our worship services in Africa?”

This rant elicited several comments.  From Margaret Blair Young, “A Zambian friend of mine told me that some church members around Lusaka go elsewhere after their LDS services so that they can do their drums.”  I commented, “The idea of drums in African LDS Service is a great one.”

Children Getting Ready to Perform at a Primary School on Bussi Island, Uganda

Children Getting Ready to Perform at a Primary School on Bussi Island, Uganda

Jen K’s comment was the most emotionally stirring:

I heard a fascinating TEDtalk by Andrew Solomon on depression.  He talked about how Western mental health workers rushed into Rwanda right after the genocide and tried to help the survivors.  The Rwandans were baffled by our methods and said something like, “Your ‘experts’ didn’t put people out in the sunlight, or have them dance and be with other people.  There was no music or drumming to get their blood flowing again.  Instead you take people one at a time into these dingy little rooms with no windows and have them sit around for an hour and talk about bad things that have happened to them.  We had to ask them to leave the country.”

I feel very strongly that African members of the LDS Church need their drums.

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