09 Apr

Uplifting Concert Raises Funds for Ethiopia

A wealth of musical talent in concert performing at the Metropolitan Tabernacle last Thursday evening, May 3, raised an impressive £4000 for the Hope for Ethiopia Charity.

Local artists All That IS, Heather Vient, The Morrisons, Alex Robb and Live Issue, helped attract over 500 people to the event, some from as far away as Omagh in Co Tyrone.  

Eleanor McClelland, who runs the Ethiopia Mission commented afterwards, “It was an amazing night, and the concert appears to improve every year. Holding this year’s event in the main sanctuary was a risk because it is such a large space to fill, but we were amazed and overjoyed at how many people attended. I can’t thank them enough and everyone involved. “

Funds raised go directly towards the work in the village of Kuriftu that today boasts a 2,000-seater church, a school, a clinic, a Bible school and a bakery. There are additional schools, churches and ministries developing at a rapid pace in various other parts of Ethiopia thanks to the Hope for Ethiopia project.

On the night, talented local lads All That Is got things underway followed by excellent performances from emerging singer Heather Vient and Country Gospel favourites The Morrisons.  

Karen Orr, and Tom Harron, two Belfast-based volunteers then explained how almost one thousand children get fed daily by the Hope for Ethiopia Charity and attend schools set up by the mission.  

A video of a trip to Africa in February 2018 recorded children receiving over 1,500 gifts carefully prepared by the Belfast helpers last year. The video, according to Eleanor McClelland, is a crucial part of the evening. She added:  “They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so people need to see where their money goes and just how impacting they’ve helped make our Ethiopian outreach.”

Pastor Michael Bunting, who helps oversee the mission on behalf of the Tabernacle said:  “Just like the work in Ethiopia, the concert keeps growing every year. We are extremely grateful to everyone for supporting such a worthy cause.”

Meanwhile, Live Issue concluded things in their usual uplifting manner - even bringing all of the artists back on stage for one last song - but before that local talent, Alex Robb had already brought worshippers to their feet with a dominant performance of It is Finished.  

His final song, entitled Why Was He There, told of how Jesus Christ reached out to a broken world – an appropriate choice as Eleanor McClelland's late husband Jim initially went to Ethiopia to do just that.  

The result? Today thousands of lives are restored, and the future is bright and the half not yet told regarding what God is doing through this wonderful ministry.