ŊƆƆWALA – the New Year Prayer for Long Life

Annual Ga Thanksgiving Prayer and english translation/narrative
I have lived and worked in 3 countries, and among all races, cultures, and religions on earth. Ga is the only sociocultural group that I know of that blesses itself in a structured way at the beginning of every new year.

1. Afi oo Afi
Happy New Year

2. Afi naa akpe wɔ
May we see the end of this New Year. Gamɛi know the earth goes round the Sun to give the seasons.

3. Afi lɛ aya ni eba nina wɔ
You don’t really need to say this after #2 above. It is an expatiation of #2.

4. Kpaanyɔ anina wɔ
My great grandmother interpretation was that, may we live to be 80years.

Contextually, may we enjoy the full grace or strength of God. The days of our lives are seventy years; And if by reason of strength they are eighty years… Psalm 90:10

5. Wɔ fee moomo
May we live to be old (Yoomo or Nuumo). This confirms the full meaning of #4 above.

6. Wɔ ye Gbo, ni wɔ ye Gbiεna
May we celebrate both the 1st and the 2nd Raining seasons. The new year starts in August after Homowo, Gbo is September and the 1st rain, Agbiɛnaa is May and the 2nd rain. This is a prayer for good rain and harvest: food security.

7. Alɔŋte din ko akafo wɔ teŋ
No black cat should come in between us. Black cat symbolizes bad omen, evil or discord.

8. Atswa akpe, wɔ nɔ bε mli
It means none of us should be killed if even 1000 shots are fired at us. It is a prayer for protection.
A thousand may fall at your side, And ten thousand at your right hand; But it shall not come near you. Psalm 91:7

9. Kpaa fεε kpaa ni wɔ gbalaa, aba shwie wɔ hiε
All the ropes we are pulling should land safely in front of us. Fishing especially,tsaanii involves long ropes/nets with hooks at the lower end. This is thrown into the sea and after a while pulled to shore, and the fish caught removed. This is a prayer for occupational or professional success.

10. Kε wɔ je bu lε, wɔ je nu nɔ;
When we dig a well, may it be that of fresh water. Gamɛi believe that water is the source and sustainer of life. This is a prayer to strike good water or in general, that your hard work shouldn’t be in vain.

11. Kε wɔ nu nu lε eko lɛ, wɔ kojiianɔ ajɔ wɔ
This is a follow up on #11. When we drink the water, may our joints be supple. This is a prayer for good health so we can.continue to work and prosper.

12. Ni nyεmi afee nyεmi
May family remain united. Let us be each other’s keeper.
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity! Psalm 133:1

13. Ni wɔsεε afi be nɛ, ehi eha wɔ fe nεkε
May things be better for us next year

14. Jɔɔmɔ, Hewalε, Shweremɔ, Shika, Nɔyaa, Kunimyeli afee wɔ fεε wɔ nɔ!
Blessings, Health, Prosperity, Wealth, Progress and Victory must be our portion.

# 8,9,10,11 and 14 are strictly speaking, not part of the original prayer.

Tswa omanye aba.

Nii Amu Darko
16th August 2015.

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