ODE TO PATRICK SEMPHERE
"You have always been Pat to me."-Lot Dzonzi.
You have always been Pat to me.
I failed to use the title Reverend to refer to you. The two of us go back to October 1977, it was around 10 in the morning, at Wenela Dowa Boma.
I was going to Dowa hospital having been referred there by the school infirmary, you were going to Kongwe to start your form one at Robert Blake Secondary School. It was there that our paths crossed for the first time.
Destiny had also put us in the same hostel, Chongoni.
I remember how you were among the committed members of the "Loyola group", a nickname that was given to a group of born again students.
I recall how you learnt how to play the guitar and became the SCOM guitarist after Sam Kainja left, and your love for art.
We then came together again at Chirunga, surprisingly now, you took over as SCOM choirmaster Joshua Chienda.
By the end of your College education you had developed magnificent skills as a communicator in both English and Chichewa.
I was surprised when you did not join MBC where you had interned several times.
Your skills as a communicator and youth worker at Bible Society led to the production of a powerful and magnificent film, the Prodigal Son, with Viphya Harawa as main actor.
Your articles on marriage in the Nation Newspaper testify to your skills.
The Billy Graham Association did not miss your skills.
I still fondly remember us doing a video recording for them at Area 30 CCAP.
You then became a pastor. I still remember the day you took me to your rural church in Mitundu, we still had planned to go to Dickson ,when every pastors of your caliber wanted to be in the city.
I will miss you Patrick. Patricia and the three( you know who) may the Lord strengthen your faith and comfort you. May Psalm 23 and 91 be your source of solace.