By SAM EYOBOKA & OLAYINKA LATONA
Christians worldwide, on Sunday, marked Easter in commemoration of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. Easter, a cardinal feast in the Christian liturgical year, is thought to be a joyous celebration of the eternal life in Jesus Christ bought through his sacrifice on Calvary cross.
As part of celebration, the Apostolic Faith Church, Anthony Village in Lagos on Easter Sunday held its traditional Easter Musical Concert. The church well-known for spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ through prayer, preaching and publishing themed this year concert: “I gave my life for you”.
At the concert, the Orchestra Choir of the Apostolic Faith Church treated guests to brilliant performances of classical and local pieces meant to highlight the true essense and reason for the season.
The cocert was admixture of several genres of music laced with the dramatisation of events leading upto the persecution, Last Supper, crucifixion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ with 13 young members of the church playing Jesus Christ and his dieciples just as different persons did the narration.
The orchestra said to be the largest orchestra in Africa played different sophisticated music with instruments like pipe organ, grand piano, saxophones, flutes, harps, trumpets, violins, violas, tubas, cello, double bass, and many others.
For about three hours, the orchestra choir treated guests to the best of golden tunes accompanied by soul-lifting sounds from keyboards, wood wind, brass, percussion and voice in their varieties which comprised of soprano, treble, alto, contralto, tenor and base.
The conductors were not left out as they added flavour to the choir presentations as they carefully directed the choir. The church all hailed the choir past master Mr. John Aina when he mounted the stage to conduct a Yoruba song that was arranged by him, Kabo Ojo Rere, a song that rendered with all enthusiasm.
Some of the songs rendered included, The old rugged cross, Were you there?, Church Sonata No 4 in D Major, Easter Tunes which was arranged by Dare, Joshua and Funke, Christ is risen today, Hosanna S’omo Dafidi and several others.
The highpoint of the concert was the presentation of the Easter Cantata, a dramatision of the song, The Glory of Easter. The song told the story of the Last Supper till the crucification and resurrection of Jesus Christ in a simple form. The song dramatised the story of Jesus’ agony on the way of the cross, as the dramatis personae included the Jews, persecutors of Jesus Christ, Mary, sympathisers amongst others taking the audience through the story of the crucifixion.
The District Superintendent West and Central Africa headquarters, Rev. Bayo Adeniran said that the Easter musical concert is one of the several programmes organised by the church to remind the people about the second coming of Jesus Christ and live Godliness life.
Adeniran ceased the opportunity to call on Nigerians to go back to God, live sacrificial lives and be committed in ensuring that corruption becomes a thing of past in the country.
He said corruption is not only a reproach to the country or the international communities but also to God.
In his words: “Leaders and followers must do a personal commitment in ensuring that sin and corruption in particular become things of the past in Nigeria. Corruption is not a thing we should handle with kid cloves but everybody must have a disdain for corruption.
“The nation is being called to make a personal commitment to say no to corruption and we cannot do it alone but God will help us to make the nation a country of integrity befitting of us.”
Continuing he said: “Let all Nigerians sacrifice their lives, invest all they have into this nation with hope that the country will be better and there is hope. Nigerians and Nigeria itself have hope, if there is godliness in government and somebody makes a personal sacrifice to lead the way and many others will follow.
“Let all of us invest our talents and skills to eradicate corruption in this nation,” he appealed, noting that for Nigeria to be a better society there is need for both the leaders and the elderly ones among us to showcase good moral values to the coming generations.
Also speaking, former head of Interim Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan descvribed the event as a worthwhle occasion capable of drawing participants c;loser to God.
Shonekan said the nation will be a better place if all Nigerians imbibe the virtues exhibited by Jesus Christ during his earthly sorjourn, noting that current trials in the country would soon be a thing of the past..
Eminent persons who attended the concert include former Lagos State governor, Brigadier-General Mobolaji John-son, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Tunde Lemo and a host of others.