Minneapolis, MN – On October 11th, Gracias Choir arrived at their 12th stop in the Christmas Cantata Tour: Minneapolis.
Lying along the Mississippi River, Minneapolis has developed into, and been recently named, one of the most popular U.S. cities to live in as its residents enjoy a city that blends beautifully with the surrounding nature.
The Cantata had already been held in Minneapolis for the past two years, leading us to believe that this year’s Cantata would also be a smooth process. However, God allowed many difficulties along the way in order for the Cantata to be held. Two venues for the Cantata were cancelled one after the other until a third venue, Anwatin Middle School, was finally found. There were many concerned that the decision to use the middle school was made too late. However, the principle of the school opened his heart to the Christmas Cantata, and not only allowed the use of the auditorium, but also allowed the Choir to freely use other school facilities.
The venue for the Cantata was secured just 10 days before the scheduled date for the performance. Thus, the Good News Corps and local volunteers had only 3 days to deliver 40,000 invitation letters to the surrounding communities. There were also many difficulties concerning the stage, electricity, lighting, and sound installations, yet in the end God made possible what had seemed impossible.
In the first act, the audience saw Emanuel born in Jerusalem, a city in darkness, where the hearts of the people sincerely longed for their savior. Through the music, the audience was able to identify with the songs’ message of light and peace.
In the second act, the audience met Anna, a girl on the street with no place to go. But when she met her father she ran to him and burst into tears. As the audience saw Anna, who now knew the preciousness of family, warm smiles spread across their faces.
After concluding the message he asked, “Will you remember this Word?” To which the audience, who had been listening very sincerely, acclaimed, “Yes!” We could see the citizens of Minneapolis receiving the Gospel.
The third act began with Handel’s classic Oratorio “Messiah”. After hearing “Hallelujah” the audience gave a standing ovation, and the final piece “God Bless America” gathered everyone in the hall as one. The Choir and the audience sang together with a heart to hope for God’s blessings in Minneapolis and the United States.
“Who would come all this way to leave a letter in my mailbox? It’s extremely rare for a performance like this to happen in our neighborhood. So as soon as I saw the letter I invited all of my friends. The beautiful costumes and voices were really wonderful. When I heard the message of Jacob and Essau and how that was connected to Jesus, I couldn’t help being amazed. You guys are travelling around America to give us happiness. I’m just so amazed and thankful. Please come back to Minneapolis next year. We’ll come back too.”
– Monica Anderson
God worked on this day and every day leading up to it. We thought things would work one way, but God didn’t allow them to. And yet He made what we thought couldn’t happen, happen in the end. God has us throw away what we think is possible or impossible. Through this Cantata, the will and Gospel of God has been established in the Minneapolis church and the citizens of this city. Our next stop: Chicago.