The Watoto Children’s Choir, a group of 18 orphans from Uganda, will continue its six-month U.S. tour in Lufkin tomorrow at 6:30 p.m. The children will present their new production, Signs & Wonders at Harmony Hill Baptist Church at 2708 South Chestnut St. in Lufkin.
The concert will feature worship songs that share the stories of the children and the hope they have because of God’s love. All performances are free and open to the public.
Since 1994, Watoto Children’s Choirs have traveled the world sharing the plight of Africa’s orphaned children. Each child in the choir has suffered the loss of one or both of their parents but they have been rescued and now live in a Watoto village. Watoto is a holistic child-care solution initiated to serve the dire needs of the people of Africa.
TFCL talked with Choir Leader Roy Kaddu to learn more about the choir, the message they are sharing, and the choir’s favorite song to sing. Keep reading to learn more about Watoto Children’s Choir.
TFCL: Tell me about Watoto Children’s Choir.
Roy: The Watoto Children’s Choir was started in 1994 and tour the world each year. They represent the millions of African children who are orphaned or vulnerable and travel to spread a message of hope and to raise awareness. The choirs have performed before presidents and royalty in the White House, Buckingham Palace, the United Nations, and many other national parliaments. The choir has also performed at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant in the UK and is featured on Chris Tomlin’s album, “Hello, Love.” They represent some of the most vulnerable women and children in Africa and raise awareness of their plight. They are also an example of the Church’s effort to bring healing, restoration, and restore dignity to lives that have been broken.
TFCL: What is like life like for these children today?
Roy: Watoto provides each child with physical care, medical intervention including HIV/AIDS treatment, education – formal and vocational, counseling and emotional well-being as well as moral and spiritual discipleship. Watoto Child Care Ministries seeks to provide holistic care to these children individually to set them up for a responsible and productive future. They have received a confidence boost and life has taken a turn for the better compared to what it was like before.
TFCL: What is the message you want to share with others?
Roy: The world is so filled with darkness, hopelessness, and despair. It’s all around us and so easy to see. But we can overcome it and live above it victoriously. God sent his son Jesus to pay for our sins. He deafeated sin. He is the light of the world. And when he comes into our lives, nothing stays the same. It all changes for the better. Jesus has given us hope and a reason to do what we do for the helpless.
TFCL: Is there a favorite song the children like to sing?
Roy: Their favorite song is “Beat of Your Live.” It is very groovy, and the melody is catchy.
TFCL: What have you learned while going on tour and visiting different cities around the world?
Roy: People are the same everywhere. At the core of humanity, people and their most basic needs are the same. So regardless of our different cultures and backgrounds, we are one and the same. People are wonderful wherever you go.
TFCL: What goes on behind the scenes to get ready for the shows?
Roy: We get dressed, pray and then go out to interact with the people who have come to watch the concert. We also have a few final technical checks we make before we start the concert.
TFCL: What do you hope the experience is the audience will take away from the show?
Roy: We hope that they will be filled with happiness, joy and encouragement in their hearts. We also hope that they will be inspired by the concert to see the realities of the issues in their communities and be challenged to respond to them positively.
TFCL: What do you want others to know about God?
Roy: God absolutely loves us unconditionally and he’s got a wonderful plan and purpose for our lives. He wants to be in relationship with us, and bless us more than we can ever dare to dream or imagine.
TFCL: If someone wants to book the Choir for a performance, how are they able to do so?
Roy: The choir is available to perform at churches, schools, and community events. If you would like more information on booking the Watoto Children’s Choir, you can visit watoto.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Megan Whitworth is the former creative director of Texas Forest Country Living. Growing up in East Texas, Megan discovered her love of writing at the age of 11, writing song lyrics and poetry, which turned into essays and articles for publications around East Texas. She later added photography into the mix capturing Friday night football games, the latest fashion looks, and portraits of people around the nation. Megan enjoys karaoke, blogging, reading, and road trips. She resides in Lufkin with her husband, Ryan, and two cats, Felix and Lucy.