|Prayers and Dreams|
|Dreaming for a Homeland
This Ethiopian Falasha girl symbolizes all those who long for a place of their own where they can be accepted for who they are. The Falashas are a people of Jewish heritage who never fit into the mainstream of Ethiopian society. The girl is leaving the lush green African jungle in exchange for the dusty hills of Judea, where all roads lead to Jerusalem.
|Prayer for Africa
This painting is about the military, political and spiritual struggle taking place in continental Africa. Armed legionaries are confronted by angels who shine light into the darkness. It is about oppression and persecution, yet it is also about the courage of those who have stood firm in the face of the enemy and are of the 'fellowship of the unashamed'. The text is a quotation from a martyred black African pastor.
Recently, I met a hereditary prince from the Sudan whose story helped inspire this painting. Because of his personal opposition to Islamic law, he was imprisoned and tortured. Today, he carries in his heart a deep concern and prayer for his people, and is a living example of a man of faith, one who has joined hands with those of the 'fellowship of the unashamed'.
|The Watchful Eye
As if in a dream, a boy is entering out into the world which is unfamiliar yet appealing. Unknown to him is the watchful eye in the cluster of grapes representing protection and providence.
I gave this title to the painting after discovering a copy of a pamphlet titled "The Watchful Eye of God" which was written by my great great great grandfather (1793-1873) Johann Toews