In 2006, I acquired a duplicate of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana hymn reserve, circled Hymn 468 and wrote boldly earlier mentioned it, “My Burial Hymn.”
My colleague instructors of the Junior Youth Fellowship at the Victory Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana at Previous Dansoman (Camara) knew about it. I explained to them that need to I die, they shouldn’t forget to notify the funeral planners about my would like, which they considered was unusual. Why would a younger gentleman in his early twenties be organizing his burial?
But I check with, why not? Once you’re born, you will die. My Gurune persons say, “Asaala dage kugre.” And they are appropriate the human being is not a stone. We will all go. It’s not a issue of if. It’s a query of when a dilemma we don’t have solutions to except all those who program their suicide.
We are not able to beat our chest and say we will be alive tomorrow since loss of life can just take absolutely everyone by shock – the abundant and the lousy, ill and healthful, sinners and the righteous – identify them.
When I satisfied my wife, I explained to her what I experienced told my pals at church, this time with two further items of significant facts. I have advised her that I don’t want any one to browse a tribute at my funeral. I never also want anyone to open a guide of condolence when I’m dead.
Individuals are cost-free compose or say what ever they want to say about me and publish it on regardless of what system they decide on, but at my funeral no tribute need to be read. This is my wish.
My wife informed me that a useless physique belongs to the loved ones, and not the spouse, so I ought to communicate that to them. But my lifetime goes beyond my relatives. I’m not guaranteed corporations and expert bodies typically get permissions from people of their deceased colleagues before opening guides of condolences.
One particular of the major regrets of my daily life would be to die with out producing all the e-book concepts I have in my head. It would even be even worse if I fall short to create about how I want my departure carried out even though I have had it planned for a lot of decades.
So let’s settle down for the information and reasons, exactly where relevant.
My overall body really should not be laid in point out for community viewing. And the subsequent are the only people today who need to see my body:
My dad and mom (father, mom and phase mother)
My siblings (the organic children of my mothers and fathers)
My little one/children
My wife’s mom and dad
The organic young children of my wife’s mom and dad
To the relaxation of you, I do not have everything against any individual. But I want you to bear in mind me on the take note of our last come across. If our previous encounter is laughter, allow that be the abiding memory me when I’m gone. If it is a little something else, let us remember “each other” that way.
I have stated that I do not want a tribute examine at my funeral. Not even my spouse or siblings ought to examine a tribute. My funeral brochure can also have just my background or the chronology of my everyday living with out any try to paint a saintly photograph of my character.
There are two motives I really do not want tributes at my funeral.
The first motive is that tributes in our component of the globe are inclined to paint pictures of a sainthood. T is stated that we really don’t talk sick of the useless so even the direct cousins of the satan get canonized in the course of their funerals.
I have not been and are unable to be a saint. I am a sinner saved by grace and try to rise whenever I drop. So I won’t be relaxed with any kind of exaggeration of my virtues.
But there is a more crucial explanation I do not fancy or aspire for spoken or created tributes.
There is 1 tribute that I want to get and all those who have those tributes may possibly by no means have the possibility to go through them at my funeral. And I never even want them to go through it.
The tribute I want is that as several folks as achievable – primarily outsiders who are not my relatives members, these I’m not obliged to aid because of relatives ties – to say to them selves, “But for this man who aided me in a person way or the other, I may perhaps not have received this significantly in existence.”
This is the form of legacy I want to go away. And that is what I do the job toward. The tale of Esther in the Holy Bible helped me to determine the goal of my existence. It is the component of the tale when Mordecai informed Esther that the Jews ended up threatened and Esther said she could be killed if she appeared ahead of the King at that time without the need of an invitation. The golden phrases Mordecai spoke are contained in Esther 4:12-14 of the Bible:
‘When Esther’s text ended up relayed to Mordecai, he sent back to her this reply: “Do not imagine that for the reason that you are in the king’s palace you by itself will escape the destiny of all the Jews. For if you continue being silent at this time, reduction and deliverance for the Jews will occur from an additional spot, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who understands if possibly you have occur to the kingdom for these kinds of a time as this?”’
I feel God gave me a voice and whichever modest methods and achievements I have not for my possess sake or the sake of only my family. So the tribute I crave for is the effects I make in the life of other people instantly, as a outcome of help they get from my work or an inspiration to people I have not satisfied.
I also do not want any e-book of condolences to be opened in my name. Regardless of what is prepared in my reserve of condolence will be meaningless to me. I simply cannot examine the messages. They will not be effective to me.
If you like what I do or who I am, permit me know so I may possibly do additional. If you imagine I am horrible, allow me know so I might adjust and get far better.
Maintain the words and phrases you intend to produce in my guide of condolence to yourself if you are unable to say them to me when I am alive. You have many selfie options in this planet, but the “signing of Manasseh’s ebook of condolence” should really not be a single of them.
My wishes are not only restricted to my burial and funeral.
I appear from a civilized family members, but it however does not hurt to emphasise this:
When I die, my wife must not be subjected to any type of widowhood rites no matter how moderate it may possibly show up. I have advised her not to succumb to any this sort of rites both from her household or mine.
At household, we are living by what will make perception. She ought to be permitted to mourn in a fashion she deems in shape. I have instructed her that if any person comes and says, “In our culture, this is how we do it,” she really should disregard them if it doesn’t make sense or if performing so dehumanizes her in the slightest way.
If at the time of my demise I am nevertheless a member in excellent standing of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana and they deem it suit to bury me, I want to be buried strictly in accordance to the church’s Christian traditions.
No libation must be poured to invoke any spirit or just about anything. I do not drink alcohol. And I will not drink zomkuom when I’m dead.
As I explained, I want my burial hymn to be Presby Hymn 468. And it ought to be sung with borborbor highlife. I really don’t know how I will die, but if my continues to be are at any time identified, I want to be buried in my village, Bongo Beo.
Our elders say the performers do not snooze at the marketplace sq. no issue how productive the dance is. So I want to return to Bongo Beo, exactly where it all began some 30-five years in the past.
If I provide Ghana plenty of and qualify, I will be honoured to have my coffin draped in the colours of the only place I get in touch with mine. On my tomb should really have the next words: “Here lies the continues to be of Manasseh Azure Awuni. He beloved his place and attempted to assistance make it far better.”
These terms could hurt my wife. One of the to start with things she explained to me when we married was, “Manasseh, I know if you are requested to pick out amongst Ghana and me, you will opt for Ghana.”
She was correct to some extent mainly because of the do the job I do. Anybody who tries to sacrifice and serve his or her nation selflessly must be selfish in the direction of his or her instant spouse and children and loved types – the persons who will be deeply hurt and negatively affected if he or she goes out and doesn’t arrive back alive.
Terms about the like of my nation will remind her of my initial key infidelity in our marriage, one particular she claims she will never forget.
I was generating an investigative documentary on abandoned automobiles and experienced to depart residence very early for operate one day. The night before, I was scheming on how to shoot the videos of deserted ambulances that had been parked in the Air Drive Foundation in Accra, after the Community Affairs Directorate of the Ghana Armed Forces experienced bounced my preliminary ask for. I was so preoccupied with the new opening that I did not assume about anything at all else.
Luckily, the day was productive and I went to shoot, but when I got residence, she was in tears. It was her birthday. And I did not try to remember.
“I said it,” she would notify me days afterwards, “that if you are to opt for in between Ghana and me, you will opt for Ghana.”
The pastor who preaches at my funeral really should emphasise salvation, the essence of lifestyle and the require to make Ghana and all of humanity better, the type of sermon preached at Komla Dumor’s funeral by Rev. Father Knowledge Larweh.
He afterwards told me his sermon was inspired by a tribute I experienced prepared when Komla Dumor died.
My tribute, I advised him, was motivated by “The Drum Key Instinct”, a sermon preached by Martin Luther King Jr. in February 1968.
I love my state, but I am not very pleased of it. I have travelled a little bit and know we are however hundreds of miles guiding how a civilized nation should appear and behave. I get worried about the variety of Ghana my small children will have to endure.
So the preacher should not waste time eulogizing me. The amount of degrees or awards I may possibly have received will not subject any far more. My trophy cabinet is entire of awards, but when I’m useless, nothing will subject any additional.
So I’ll cherish the aged rugged cross,Until my trophies at past I lay downI will cling to the aged rugged cross, And exchange it some working day for a crown.
I appreciate music and my funeral must not be without a borborbor overall performance. The choir should sing danceable gospel highlife and police band, if they are current, must enjoy patriotic tracks. And when it’s time to go to the grave, it ought to be borborbor highlife with the initial 5 stanzas of the Twi model of Presby Hymn 468:
Kristo mogya ne ne trenee,
Ne me ntama, m’ahyehyɛde,
Na da a Nyame bɛfrɛ me no,
Mede manya n’anim makɔ.
Enti kristo mogya no nko,
Ne me nkwagye ne m’ahotɔ,
Miwu oo, mete ase oo,
Me de me ho meto noso.
Na sɛ me bɔne haw me a,
Memma ɛnhyɛ me so koraa
Na mekae sɛ saa bɔne nti,
Na ɛma Yesu huu yaw pii
Sɛ m,akɔnnɔ bi gyigye me,
Na wiasefo daadaa me
Na ɔbonsam sɔ me hwɛ a,
Meguan metoa Yesu daa
Mesrɛ no sɛ ɔmmoa me,
ɔnhyɛ me den ɔko no mu
ɔmmma mennyɛ nea ɔmpɛ
na ɔmma menyɛ nea eye.
The author, Manasseh Azure Awuni, is a freelance investigative journalist and editorial guide. He is the creator of a few textbooks: “Voice of Conscience”, “Letters to My Potential Wife” and “The Fourth John: Reign, Rejection & Rebound”. His electronic mail deal with is email@example.com