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En-Kata Choir: music of hope

Massai singers to perform in Bowser
Eva Tipilit is one of the singers who will perform at special Bowser concert.

A message of hope, faith and celebration is spreading across North America. This fall, six members of the En-Kata choir from Tanzania, Africa, are sharing songs and stories from the heart of their continent.

The ‘Hope of the Maasai’ Tour 2011 will lead them through four Canadian provinces and six U.S. states, touching audiences with their testimonies of triumph over HIV/AIDS, disease and poverty.

The choir will be at Island Gospel Centre in Bowser on Wednesday, October 5 for their colourful presentation.

“Africa’s story is not without hope. This fall, people in North America can share in the tradition of song and storytelling about the awesome power of God at work in one of the most remote areas of East Africa,” said En-Kata tour co-ordinator Jeremy Feser.

The musical presentation will feature songs written by the Maasai and performed in both their native language of Maa and the official language of Swahili, interspersed with testimonies by the performers.

The testimonies will be translated live on stage, and the songs will have on-screen translations.

The En-Kata choir is a project in partnership between Pamoja Ministries and MAPED, an indigenous Maasai organization in Tanzania that combines the salvation message with issues of social justice.

Together, the two groups have created two CDs of the choir’s performances as well as a stunning picturebook showcasing one community of the Maasai tribe. These items will also be available at the event.

“The performance is family-friendly and anyone is invited to attend,” emphasizes Feser. “There will be no charge, but offerings are encouraged as one of the goals of the ‘Hope of the Maasai’ Tour 2011 is to raise money to continue with the construction of the first Maasai-led elementary school in Orbili, Tanzania.”

In 2009, the En-Kata choir embarked on its first tour of North America. With the money raised, the Maasai were able to build two classrooms, bathrooms and teacher housing.

A grand opening celebration for the school was held in June of 2011.

“The community is excited about the opportunity to give their children a great education,” Feser explained. “The number of children wishing to enroll in kindergarten far exceeds the capacity of the two classrooms built so far.”

With the funds raised by the En-Kata choir this fall, Pamoja Ministries and MAPED hope to add Grade 1 classrooms for the graduating kindergarteners to move into.

The ‘Hope of the Maasai’ Tour 2011 will be at Island Gospel Centre in Bowser on Wednesday, October 5th beginning at 7 p.m., offering a look at the fascinating culture of the Maasai tribe in Tanzania and a chance to become part of the story of hope by helping their school expand.