Shining A Light on the Dark Continent

Dar es Salaam — A modern, clean city

After spending money on the tanzanite, Dave and Navy Chaplain Captain Jon Cutler explored Dar es Salaam. They particularly wanted to see the churches built when the Europeans occupied the country. They found a Lutheran church and a Roman Catholic Church. Both churches were built between 1897 and 1902.

One of the bells in the Lutheran Church in Dar es Salaam
One of the bells in the Lutheran Church in Dar es Salaam

In the Lutheran church, they climbed to the top of the bell tower. Written on the three bells in German was “Zu Gott Empor,” meaning “God and Emperor.” The emperor was probably Kaiser Wilhelm. The bell tower also served as a clock tower. The mechanism, gears and pendulum of the clock still work.

Dave said the stained glass in both churches was beautiful. “I really liked the African boy kneeling before the Baby Jesus,” he said.

Dave really liked this stained glass showing an African boy bowing to Baby Jesus
Dave really liked this stained glass showing an African boy bowing to Baby Jesus

Portugal colonized Tanzania in the 1500s but was ousted by Omani Arabs who controlled the country and created the largest Arab slave trading center. In the late 19th Century, Germany colonized the area and had possession until after World War I. As part of the League of Nations charter, Britain took control until 1961 when Tanganyika became independent. In 1964, Zanzibar joined the country and it was renamed Tanzania. Thus the European influence around the city.

The city reminded Dave of any western modern city – modern, clean and pleasant.

 

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