The Big House

Posted: 11-12-2019 - 14:05.

The Big House

Building the Trano-be, Madagascar About a year ago, on a Thursday morning, Jurgen was telling the bible stories to the king of Tsiombivohitra. There was another man in the house, an older man. Jurgen did not know him and asked his name: Iaban’i Roly. The coming weeks iaban’i Roly joined the meetings in Tsiombivohitra. After getting to know each other a bit better it turned out that the man officially lived in our village. The reason Jurgen did not see him there yet? Iaban’i Roly was building a new big house (trano-be) and until it was finished he lived somewhere else.

One day the man asked Jurgen why he did not tell the stories in Maroamboka since we live there? Jurgen explained that we promised the other villages to come there as soon as possible and that we must keep our promises. Iaban’i Roly and Jurgen decided start the stories in his house when it is finished. That would take a few more months.

The house is finished! Jurgen visited and found Iaban’i Roly’s wife who said she would send her husband to talk with him. He came yesterday the plan is that Jurgen will start the stories after Christmas. Iaban’i Roly said that Thursday morning is the best time to have more listeners since it is taboo to work on this day.

Building a trano-be, MadagascarOkay, why telling this? Well, the appointment is very interesting. Iaban’i Roly is not only one of the king of Maroamboka, he is also considered to be a important and powerful witch doctor. Together with his ‘colleague’ witch doctor he has costumers from all around the area. He even receives people from the capital, Antananarivo. They come especially to get a ‘blessing’ or something else only he can provide. The Malagasy fear him. We are not worried. Although the stories are very clear on the practices of the witch doctors, Jurgen is there because he has been invited. He just couldn’t let go of this invitation.

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