Today, I leave for a two week tour of eastern Germany with The Wisconsin Gospellers
(www.wisconsingospellers.org). The Gospellers began as an international people to people
exchange with gospel music sung in English as the international language. We formed when our German partners first came to Wisconsin in 2006 to share their enthusiasm for gospel music with us and to visit the home country of the music they love so much. This will be the Gospellers third tour to Germany and our German friends have been in the US three times as well. Although this is my first year singing with the group I’ve heard many stories about the relationships formed, experiences shared and hearts touched by this wonderful music. Our tour itinerary includes ten performances either at concerts or in Sunday morning worship services. We will be staying with host families and what I’ve heard from previous choir tour, this is one of the highlights of the trip. Most of our tour destinations appear to be smaller German towns and cities Eberswalde, Cottbus, Kolkwitz, Kroppen, Falkensee among others. This is one of the most interesting features of this trip because I’m imagining these are places that are probably not huge tourist destinations. We will also spend some time in Berlin, which I’ve heard is a pretty interesting city.
I am really excited about embarking on this grand adventure. I have my German phrase book, an audible book with basic German conversation lessons, and my google translate app (thanks to Aaron, who wouldn’t let me leave the house without it). Hopefully, my lack of German language experience will not be too big of a barrier with these tools at my disposal. My bags are packed and my heart is open to meeting new German friends and neighbors.
In addition to the opportunities to perform the music we’ve been working on for so long, I am also looking forward to the opportunity to experience a different part of the world and to see our country through the eyes of the people we will meet and engage in conversation. I imagine I will learn a lot from our hosts and experience a part of the world marked by current and historical
events that are primarily headlines and news stories from the American perspective. For those of you who might be interested in hearing a Wisconsin Gospellers concert stateside, we are planning a fundraising concert for Saturday, August 27 in Madison. I’ll post more details as the date approaches.
Please keep all of us in your prayers and thoughts over the next two weeks. Pray for a safe and fun trip. Pray also that we are kind, generous and respectful American ambassadors for gospel music and for our country as a whole.