Monday, April 6, 2009

Kids’ Sunday and the Tcharuwani Choir

Believe it or not – this picture still doesn’t capture how many kids there really were on the platform.

On Kids’ Sunday children lead the entire church service. This year it lasted a little over four hours.

The girls leading praise and worship. (Marta’s little sister, Virginia, Graça, Anabela, and others.)

Isac, Virginia, Pilonte, and another boy did a skit showing the story of Jacob and Esau in Macua. Isac (playing Isaac) kept telling Esau to go hunt for very specific animals only found in the bush here. The congregation LOVED it and couldn’t stop laughing because only somebody from the bush would even know the animal names he was using.

After the kids went to Sunday School Victor’s dad, Pastor Mocala, preached about how to be a good parent. Victor’s dad always does lots of entertaining physical illustrations. He used one of those dried branches from the vases to demonstrate that you should not beat your kids and that you can teach them things like how to sweep by sweeping yourself.

Grupo Coral Tcharuwani

After church Victor and I drove the Tcharuwani choir out into the bush to take pictures. (Okay I need to back up with this story.) About six months ago a church in Nampula invited different choirs from all over the city to come sing for the anniversary of their choir. They invited our kids’ band to play and Victor and I went with them. This is how we came to hear the most incredible, beautiful African choir ever – a group called Tcharuwani made up of young people from several different churches. After hearing them sing we wanted to somehow get involved with them and invited them to come to the orphanage to participate in the voice class that Ashlie came and did in October and November. In December we were able to record our kids’ music and after building a relationship with the studio we were able to help Tcharuwani record their songs too. I LOVE their music so much – their range and harmonies are incredible and all their music sounds like an African lullaby to God.

On Sunday they sang in our church and then we drove into the bush to take pictures for the cover of their CD. This was really fun. We packed 10 people plus 1 baby into our car (which is designed for five people) and then drove a long way with everyone singing. Whenever I’m with them (or the kids band) and they’re all singing their hearts out – I just can’t believe that I get to be in the midst of it! I feel like I’m getting something really valuable for free. Anyway – we drove to this river and took pictures there. Then we drove to a place where you can just see the Mozambican landscape stretching to the mountains. The choir did a few different poses and then we took tons of pictures with them actually singing. The funnest and funniest thing about this was that though you are in the middle of the nowhere and it seems like it should be “empty” – if you stop somewhere for any reason at all, there will be a crowd of people there to watch within seconds. It is impossible to figure out where the people actually come from but this always happens no matter what. Grupo Coral Tcharuwani singing on the side of the road.

So we are driving in the bush with nobody in sight, in any direction. We stop at a scenic place and get out of the car. In less than two minutes there is somehow a crowd there to see what we’re doing. Then when the choir starts singing their INCREDIBLE music it is SO fun to see this random little crowd get to hear them for a few minutes. Everyone is smiling and laughing. Every truck that drives by is overloaded with dozens of people crammed into every nook and cranny and hanging off the back and sides. The trucks that passed would slow down to see what was going on and as they slowly drove by they would see this choir singing on the side of the road to no audience except for an impromptu group of whoever lives somewhere nearby and a mucunya with a camera. I didn’t realize the opportunity I missed in taking pictures of the “bigger picture” and now I’m kind of mad at myself for not capturing the little crowds and passerby. But nevertheless, Sunday was fun.

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