Oregon Adventist Men's Chorus
Three years after we were originally scheduled to go to Ukraine, OAMC showed up in Kiev! Some 60 singers, spouses and staff arrived at the seminary at Bucha around June 5 to begin a two-week journey around the country. What did we expect? We have learned not to expect, but to be open to Gods leading. What happened? A bus blew up. A mayor scheduled a parade to block the road to our concert hall, and then scheduled an outdoor concert on the plaza to drown out our music. Military checkpoints every few miles reminded us that we were near a war zone. None of it mattered. He who was with us was certainly stronger than any who were against us. Nearly every concert was standing room only. As wonderful as that was, reports coming to us after the trip are that several people who came to the concerts have attended Bible studies and other church-sponsored activities. For the rest of the story, stay tuned as we are building a report with photos.
WAR AND RUMORS OF WAR WON’T STOP THE PRAISE
Oregon Adventist Men’s Chorus Ukraine Mission detours to Romania
An international chorus led by the Oregon Adventist Men's Chorus (OAMC) should have been in Ukraine in April of 2014. However, the unrest in Crimea and subsequent turmoil throughout Ukraine led to postponing, and ultimately, redirecting the mission.
Instead, through a series of miracles and lots of hard work, OAMC returned to Romania Sept. 21 to Oct. 5, joined by singers from Romania, South Africa, Spain – and neighboring Ukraine.
"Postponing the mission was a natural choice to make when considering the safety of our singers," says David Schmidt, president of OAMC, "But it was a very difficult and emotional decision because we have become friends with our Ukrainian counterparts. We are very concerned for their safety."
Pastor Lev Vertylo, who was a guest conductor at the OAMC concert in April, returned to Ukraine to take up his new post as president of the Donetsk Conference. Just before Vertylo left Portland, riots and unrest flared up in the Donetsk region. With a heavy heart and with much prayer, he flew back to uncertain conditions.
"We have not heard much from him, other than that Lev and his family are safe. We certainly appreciate that their priorities are for members of their families and churches," Schmidt reports. "One positive result of our work together is that the Adventist Church in Ukraine knows we are praying for them."
Though travel agents warned that airlines did not make concessions when canceling as many tickets as were needed, after a prayer session, OAMC submitted its requests. Most of the tickets were canceled with only a small penalty.
The OAMC planning team sought God’s direction on what to do next. Flying into Romania and then proceeding to Ukraine became an option which would protect further ticket cancellations. As the possibility of peace in Ukraine diminished, a mission began to take shape in Romania.
Thus it came about that in September, OAMC and its partners in Romania, South Africa, Botswana and Spain worked with the Religious Liberty department of the Romanian Union. Religious Liberty programs, followed by concerts, took place in western Romania, a region influenced by western European secularism. The chorus kicked off a major evangelistic series in the city of Pitesti. Of the 11 cities on the itinerary, Bucharest is the only city in which OAMC sang in its 2009 mission.
"Speranta TV, Romania’s version of the Hope Channel, has been airing OAMC’s 2009 concert regularly, broadcasting throughout the country," says Pastor Edi Ciobanu. "We will be reaching a much broader audience with the gospel message on this trip."
Some singers from South Africa joined the mission. "We will have singers from Botswana and some from Spain," says Donna Schmidt, mission project manager. "Our prayer is that some of the leaders and singers from Ukraine will be able to join us. That will help them and us lay the foundation for a future mission to Ukraine."
2014 Tour Route: Click for large map.
1. Stupini Seminary (rehearsal)- Sept. 22-24
2. Sinaia - Wednesday, Sept. 24
3. Cluj-Napoca - Thursday, Sept. 25
4. Oradea - Friday, Sept. 26
5. Arad (Church service) - Sabbath, Sept. 27
6. Timisoara - Saturday, Sept. 27
7. Alba Iulia - Sunday, Sept. 28
8. Sibiu - Tuesday, Sept. 30
9. Ramnicu Valcea - Wednesday, Oct. 1
10. Craiova - Thursday, Oct. 2
11. Pitesti - Friday, Oct. 3
12. Bucharest - Sabbath, Oct. 4
New Adventist Mens' Chorus in Madrid, Spain
Alin Apostol from Romanian Chorus extends the vision
YouTube videos have just been posted showing Corul Barbatesc Adventist din Madrid singing three songs...
Fie-n veci laudat Dumnezeu
Prinsi in pacate
Stephen Moerane's Story and Baptism
How Stephen was introduced to OAMC, and the way God led him. See his baptism in a cold hotel pool, in South Africa's winter; hear his father's story.
VIDEO: Stephen's baptism
OAMC Mission to Romania featured in the Gleaner
Cover story in August 2009 issue
The August 2009 issue of the North Pacific Union of SDA monthly magazine, the Gleaner, told the story of OAMC's Mission to Romania.
Read the OAMC Mission to Romania Blog
Read personal experiences on the Mission to Romania blog.
Read an online exclusive story on The Gleaner website.
Tour Launch Concert in Johannesburg
August 1, 2012 - St. Mary's Cathedral
Immediately after this tour launch concert, the singers boarded the buses for Cape Town and points beyond.
Mokale Koapeng, Conductor of the host choir, Southern Africa's Arise O Man, invites us to listen in at this free concert for the inner city dwellers.
VIDEO: First concert in Johannesburg
Watching God Work in South Africa
Video from Live Stream now available online
Hymns and prayers of thanksgiving resonated through the Vancouver Church on November 10, as the Oregon Adventist Mens Chorus (OAMC) celebrated what God did in South Africa this past summer. Five guests from South Africa were on hand to help tell the stories and relate the growth of the church in South Africa as a result of this mission. Live streaming enabled viewers from all over the U.S. and South Africa to participate remotely, and an archived version of the program is available (click the link below).
Please let us know how you liked the live stream and/or the archived video program. VIDEO: Watching God Work in South Africa
See Photos from the Romania Mission
See pictures from the Mission shared by Denny Nutter, Ralph Stathem and Keith Owen. More photos here.
Hear interview with Alin Apostol and Lou Wildman
Excerpts from an interview with Alin Apostol and Lou Wildman.
Watch the Video Clips