D* Change Festival Awakens Spirits in Kakuma
Volume 1, Issue 4-5 / March-April 2009
The D*Change Festival Gospel Crusade entertained refugees and the surrounding public from 12th to 13th March, with popular musicians making a vibrant appearance.
Kakuma hosted a vibrant gospel crusade campaign that entertained refugees and the surrounding public through a crusade christened D*Change Festival. The festival was staged at Baraza Park from 12th to 13th March.
The audience was thrilled by live performances featuring gospel celebrities such as Rose Jeffa of Burundi, who stirred the music enthusiasts with her pop song, “Nimeanza Safari” (I have started the journey).
Her song resonated with refugees, as the song metaphorically links the refugee’s experience of fleeing their country in search of a safe haven to a believer’s journey away from the dark life to embrace the Christian light and spiritual protection.
Traditional Christian music was spiced up the with rap and hip hop tunes of popular artists such as Benjamin Jeffa, Ba Mdogo, and DJ Asemba, making the D*Change experience more exhilarating. The artists’ frequent stage slogan of “Tuendeleye ama tusiendeleye?” (do you like us to continue or not?) incited the crowd to demand encores in an exceptionally theatrical performance.
Some revelers thought they spotted a fabulous blend of musical styles and characters distinctly offbeat in a gospel crusade. One local pastor (who wished to remain anonymous) noted that the campaign was more about entertaining than about preaching the word.
Nevertheless, the performers’ life experiences and testimonies filled the divide and touched poor souls to serve the Lord. One such testimony came from a performer who had previously served as a bar musician before he started singing for Christ.
The services were led and arranged by the celebrated Bishop Ben Bahati Ministry based in Eldoret, Kenya, and supported by churches from the U.S. and Canada. Jason Burden joined the crusade as a guest speaker from Canada.