By Male Marvin
The Watoto Children’s Choir on Saturday celebrated its 25th anniversary with a mega praise rally in Kampala, Uganda. The talented Children serve as ambassadors for Watoto Child Care Ministries, dedicated to rescuing, restoring and rebuilding orphans since 1994.
The Ministry has been able to rescue over 1320 babies, keep over 5,000 girls in school, and has extended its reach into Juba, South Sudan.
Earlier speaking to UG Christian News, Watoto Church Pastor Edward Mwesigwa explained that as much as they raise sponsorship as they visit one country after the other, their goal is to leave audiences filled with the love of Jesus Christ through their worship, testimonies and prayer.
The Saturday celebration didn’t end without the youngsters sharing stories of how their lives have been changed and how they have been called into a life of purpose to transform their communities.
These included Ben Kalinimi, who heads the Watoto Worship Academy, and also mentors his younger Watoto brothers and sisters.
Ben Kalinimi’s Story
I came to Watoto when I saw 6 years old, after both of my parents had passed away. I was left in the care of my grandmother but she was too poor to look after such a large extended family.
As a result, we lacked access to the very basic needs including education. However when I joined Watoto my life completely changed. My life was completely transformed. I was not only given access to basic needs, but to family and mother who loves me till this day.
However, I used to struggle with my identity. I was ashamed of my story. I always looked at it as a point of pain – nothing to be talked about. That changed when I travelled with the Watoto Children’s Choir in 2009.
We travelled to the UK and USA and it was on the choir that I realised that each one of us has a story – and that God can bring healing and freedom to others through any story. And that is what God has done in my life. I stand before you today as a living testimony of God’s amazing grace – as a living testimony of God’s redeeming power and faithfulness.
Today I am the team leader of the Watoto Worship Academy where we are raising the next generation of worship leaders to serve the local church.
Many of these Children were once hopeless and broken, but through Jesus they have new life. And we believe that God is going to use them to influence not only this nation, but the world.
When I share my story I am reminded of John 9. Jesus is walking with His disciples, and they come across this man born blind. The disciples ask Jesus; whose fault is it that this man was born blind, is it his parents? And I remember going through such a time in my life where I was looking for . someone to blame for what happened to me.
I went through such a time asking; why me Lord? But I like what Jesus says to the disciples. H shifts their perspective and says; its not because anyone of them sinned, this happened that the glory of God will be manifested in this man’s life.
I stand before you to say, the glory of God has and is being manifested in my life. He split the sea so that I could walk right through it. Amen.