There are few things in this life that are more uplifting than the sweet sound of children singing praises to the Lord. The pure innocence of their genuine spirit has the ability to move even the most hardened hearts. But what makes the Watoto Children’s Choir even more powerful than just any other children’s choir is the reality of each child’s salvation. Their love for Jesus is more than just a simple admission of faith or a gateway to heaven—their salvation so much more tangible to them than most of us will ever experience.
On 31st January, the Watoto Children’s concert graced the sanctuary at Sungai Way-Subang Methodist Church (SSMC) with their beautiful voices and vibrant energy. The concert featured songs by the children accompanied by their adult leaders, and videos about the Watoto ministry.
Themed “Oh, What Love,” the concert started with Christy Nockels’ “Healing Is In Your Hands,” which was intermittently interjected with scripture passages read by several of the children, followed by a lively rendition of “You Are My Hope That Overflows.”
“Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” (Psalm 43:5)
“The LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love.” (Psalm 147:11)
“Hi Everybody!” Two young boys, Lawrence and Andrew, greeted the audience. We are Watoto and we are so excited to be here today!”
“We are here to tell you that God loves each and every one of you and that He wants you to be His children. I know this because I have come to know God as my Father,” Lawrence declared. “You see, all of us at Watoto were once orphans. When my parents died, I did not see any hope for my life. My brothers and I had to live with our grandmother… I was very sick and never went to school. Life was very difficult (but) I believe that God had a wonderful plan for my life!”
“In the midst of our suffering, He rescued us,” Andrew continued. “We were brought to Watoto where we were given a new family and a home. And there, we learned that we are not fatherless because God is our Father. It is because of His love that we can stand here today and tell you about a new hope we have found!”
Sing to the Lord a new song;
sing to the Lord, all the earth.
Sing to the Lord, praise his name;
proclaim his salvation day after day.
Declare his glory among the nations,
his marvelous deeds among all peoples.
For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
he is to be feared above all gods.
A video of several Watoto alumni was shown, featuring several individuals who have graduated from the Watoto program, and their journey with the Lord throughout their time there. “I believe every child in the world needs a chance to have proper education—the chance to have a proper meal, a house, and most importantly, a family, because that’s the only way you can be nurtured into the person you are supposed to be,” one of the alumni said.
After a presentation of the theme song, a video of the Watoto Facility was shown. Watoto Child Care Ministries provides a home for infants who are cared for at “Baby Watoto,” and children ages 2 and above who are placed under the care of Watoto mothers who were themselves, once vulnerable women at risk.
“These children come in and they’re looking for someone to meet their basic needs, and we do meet their basic needs—their emotional, physical, and educational needs,” said a Watoto mother. “But we also take time to nurture and disciple each one of them, helping them to realize God’s call and purpose on their lives.”
“I believe that the only solution to the world’s problems is the Church,” Founders, Gary and Marilyn Skinner said. “Every community has problems. So every community needs the church. The Church isn’t a building or a denomination—the Church is people. People just like you. People who passionately love Jesus, passionately love their community, and passionately love people the way Jesus does. And it’s that love that motivates us to do what we can to help.”
“It is through the faithful partnership of friends from all around the world that Watoto is able to rescue these children and raise them to become future leaders,” said Rogers, a leader of the Watoto Choir. “
The Watoto choir closed their performance with a beautiful rendition of “Amazing Grace” and the theme song, “Oh, What Love” before another leader, Sam, shared his testimony and the Good News. “I can tell you that my life has never been the same again. Today, I know the purpose for my life and I have found joy and peace because of His love,” he said. Then, a little girl, Vivian, led anyone in the audience who wanted to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior in a simple, yet heartfelt prayer:
“Father God, I want to be a part of your family. I know that sin has separated me from you. Thanking for sending Christ to bear the price for my sin so that I may be reconnected with you. I accept you, Jesus, as my Savior and I submit my life to You. Amen!”
The Watoto Children’s Choir has been on tour in Malaysia since January 7th and will continue to perform in various places around the Klang Valley and Melaka until March 6th. (See schedule for details: http://www.watoto.asia/en/the-choir/see-the-choir/) Don’t miss out on an experience that will undoubtedly touch your heart and very likely change your life! For more information about Watoto Ministries, including how to support a life, please visit their website at https://www.watoto.com/home.
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