Los Angeles(LA), the symbol of the “American Dream” and the largest city in the state of California. It’s a US city with the most population after New York, the home of the film mecca Hollywood, a multiethnic city etc. LA has many places to enjoy cultural arts, is famous as a tourist attraction, and the citizens are generally laid-back.
In the evening of October 4th, Mr. Gregory, a principle of a high school in Los Angeles attended the Christmas Cantata held at the Shrine Auditorium. He expressed that the professional and beautiful performance of the Gracias Choir moved his heart deeply in a pure way. He said he felt as though he had met with angels.
“A person named Daniel came to our school. He explained that he would like to invite the students to this Cantata performance and I also came with the students. Pastor Ock Soo Park’s message today was very concise and clear. Pastor Park explained about Jesus’ righteousness. Salvation does not come from us but from God. There is no sinner inside God, only holy righteous people. It was amazing because the Words had so much power. The message of the Choir was also very strong. Christmas is about Jesus’ birth. Especially in the 2nd musical and 3rd stage chorus, I couldn’t help but to be surprised at the Choir’s capability. Christmas is something the whole family should be together. Because many people nowadays are unable to, the message in the 2nd stage today felt even more powerful. Also, it’s an honor to be here.” – Gregory
With 7,000 seats, the Shrine Auditorium houses the most seats among any theatre in America. Many LA citizens filled the seats here today. Most of the citizens who saw the performance said that they felt strong power and strength. That is exactly Jesus’ love.
“Everything in the performance were incomparably wonderful and amazing. But there was the 3rd stage chorus among them. When the Choir sang “Hallelujah,” I was thrilled. Not only that, the Words of the Pastor today made my moved heart. Every scripture was deeply impressive. I think Christmas is the day Jesus came to us. “ – Caron
Mary, who says she attended the Christmas Cantata through invitation of a neighbor, commented that this is the first performance but it was awesome and wonderful. She explained that the scene that she saw in the 1st stage was marvelous. Especially, she was deeply impressed as how professionally the Gracias Choir expressed the true meaning of Christmas.
Throughout the entire performance, there was ceaseless applause and shouts of joy. Many people were unable to see the performance due to shortage of seats but they returned promising the next year.
The hearts of the 150 pastors who attended the Cantata performance on this day were moved. There was also a Pastors’ Reception Meeting at the Shrine Auditorium Expo Hall in the afternoon. The pastors were happy and thankful as they heard the message about sins being washed away by Jesus’ blood.
“I’m so happy to be here at this meeting. The Words were about salvation and it was the most important message than anything else on this earth. He explained how Jesus died on the cross for our sins and saved us. It was a truly beautiful sermon. The most important thing is that Jesus came to this earth for us.” – Pastor Alex Gonzalez
“I came by the invitation of someone named Leo. It’s an honor that it’s a meeting that is really needed in LA and it was a chance to work greatly with the same heart. There aren’t many places nowadays preaching the heart of Jesus Christ it got me thinking to see that the church here is renewed and work with the heart of Jesus. I don’t know very well about the Christmas Cantata but I look forward to what God will show us and teach us through the Cantata.” – Pastor Jenar Orantes
Pastor Ock Soo Park preached the gospel for the citizens of Los Angeles. “God made our body and heart. You can tie down the body but not the heart. God does the work of lifting up the heart. “Thy brother shall rise again!” “Rise, take up thy bed and walk!” We may have fallen in sin but the cross of Jesus overcame sins. God does the work of taking our hearts out of sin. If we combine that heart and ours, we become freed from sin.”
The Los Angeles Christmas Cantata came to an end. 100 volunteers participated in the preparation of today’s performance. The volunteers helped in maintaining order for the citizens lined up to see the show from 4 pm.
“It’s the first time I’ve ever seen a volunteer program so big. It was really good because all the volunteers gathered together at first to introduce themselves and we got to know each other. I saw the performance today and the music was amazing. I almost cried when the people thanked us as they left. It was the best performance I have ever seen. The people whom I volunteered with are all my new family. There are many other volunteer programs in the IYF other than the Cantata and I would really like to come back and participate in the other programs. I promise I’ll be back!” – Vanesscruz
As much as the Gracias Christmas Cantata has deeply moved the citizens of LA, we look forward to Las Vegas where tomorrow’s performance will take place.