Music brings people together

A beautiful gesture to help a young musician, a new hymnal between tradition and modernity, and some benefit concerts that raised money for charity. It is amazing what all music can achieve.

A very special concert

An emotional concert was given on 8 September in Neckarsteinach-Darsberg, a small town in Germany. Andrii Rusanov had been diligently learning to play the piano for two years when war broke out in his home country of Ukraine and he had to flee to Germany with his mother and sister at the beginning of March. The three were happy to have found a good place to stay in Neckarsteinach-Darsberg. Unfortunately, there was no piano for Andrii to practise on.

Fortunately, there was a New Apostolic Church nearby with a piano on which Andrii was allowed to play. Often while he was practising, members would happen to be there who enjoyed his playing immensely. The congregation decided to organise a piano concert for 8 September. Around 80 people listened spellbound to pieces by Frédéric Chopin, Ludwig van Beethoven, Sergey Rachmaninov and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. In between, Andrii’s mother talked about their life before the war and how it has changed since then.

New hymnal for Mozambique

The New Apostolic Church Mozambique introduced its new hymnal with a concert. On 17 September, District Apostle John Kriel launched the new Portuguese hymnal in Maputo, the country’s capital. The project was begun back in 2010. The 359 songs are mostly in Portuguese, the most widely spoken language in the country, but there are also songs in the five local languages eMacua, eChuabo, Chichewa, Changana, and Sena. The hymnal is comprised of traditional and newly composed songs.

Music for all ages

In Lagos, Owerri, and Uyo in Nigeria young people came together, whereas in Reutlingen-West in Germany older members gathered—in both cases to make music together. From 1 August to 1 September, a total of 82 instrumentalists and over 800 choristers met in Nigeria for a music camp at various locations. This had been organised by the Church’s music department under Apostle Oscar Kabang Nwanza.

The approximately 35 senior members from the Reutlingen district had similar plans. They were delighted that Bishop Matthias Grauer came by to pray with them. Afterwards, however, he let the singers enjoy their first choir rehearsal since the beginning of the Covid pandemic. Later they sat together over coffee and cake.

Helping people through music

Numerous visitors flocked to a benefit concert by the Niederrhein Orchestra in the abbey church Kamp-Lint in Germany on 25 September. Many more listeners followed the live broadcast of the concert. Admission was free, but the orchestra asked for donations for two charities. The orchestra and an ecumenical children’s and youth choir gave an impressive performance, which the audience rewarded with donations to the tune of 2,000 euros.

Still moved by the motto #jugendbewegt of the New Apostolic Church Western Germany, its youth concert choir planned a benefit concert for 2022. The choir was excited to finally be able to sing again after Covid restrictions were finally lifted. The choir gave a concert in Wuppertal to celebrate its tenth anniversary. The programme of classical and popular music lasted two hours and took place in the beautiful historic Town Hall of Wuppertal. The choir impressed the more than 1,000 visitors with a cappella pieces and songs accompanied by organ or piano. Drums and a cello were also used. The audience must have been delighted and donated generously. More than 16,000 euros were collected. The money will go to a project in Guinea-Bissau, where a centre for young people is being built. The complex will include sports facilities, space for socialising and skill enhancement, as well as sanitary facilities.