13 hours on the bus took us to Orlando. As it being the main tourist-attracting city of the Florida Peninsula, Orlando gathers about 4 million visitors a year. There are many little and large tourists attractions here and there, which appeal to everyone, such as Disneyland, Universal Studios, and Disney Animal Kingdom.
Orlando was the first city to hold two performances in one day, out of the 20 cities. Last time, the Cantata was held at the Osceola Performing Arts Center, but many people had to return home because of the lack of seats and a few remained to watch even while standing.
In order for more people to enjoy the Cantata, and more importantly hear the gospel, there were two performances in the same day, at three and seven in the afternoon. From one o’ clock in the afternoon many people lined up to change their e-tickets to physical tickets for a production that would start much later on at three o’ clock.
Likewise, in the evening performance many citizens started to line up at 5.30, waiting for the doors to open. Until the doors opened, they surveyed their brochures, bought Cantata CDs and showed signs of excitement for the Cantata, which finally came back in a year.
“Oh Jesus… He is the one to save us, his people, from our sins…! As Joseph lifted up Baby Jesus, who was born in a manger, the audience witnessed the birth of Jesus with moved hearts
“Time to have some fun!” Anna who would cause all sorts of trouble in the village realized the love of a family and portrayed a happy Christmas to the viewers.
As soon as the curtains opened for the third act, already, series of exclaimed Wows were heard everywhere. As ‘Silent Night’ and ‘God Bless America’ rang through the Orange County Convention Center of Orlando, the audience gathered their voices to sing together as one. After the final song the audience could not stop applauding. Orlando’s night deepened with those who became one through the Cantata.
Afterwards, there was a VIP reception late at night. In this particular reception, about 20 people coming as school principals, court officials and Administration Officials of the city of Orlando attended. Among the court officials, there was Armando Ramirez, who participated in the Cantata last year, and is continually supporting the Gracias Choir. This year, in order to enjoy the Cantata once more, he brought his friend and wife.
“Someone came to my church to advertise about the Cantata. My friend said that she would come to the evening performance. It was a really professional performance. I am a pianist and my sons and daughters are also musicians, playing the guitar, drums and piano. That is why my family love to come and watch these music performances. The music I heard from Gracias Choir today was just breathtaking. Especially, the third act’s chorus! The Pastor’s message was also good. It was simple and clear but it got straight to the point. I think it touched my heart to serve Jesus.” – The Justiniano Family
“The Cantata promoting team came to our school. I thought that Christmas Day was all about knowing about Jesus, so I brought a few of my students here. Our school’s aim is to teach the students about Jesus, so I take them to many performances but there are not many productions that explain Jesus in such detail. The students I brought with me are all from our Band and Choir. I imagine that they would have learnt more about either the music or Jesus.” – Lakisha Robinson (Principal of Victory Christian Academy)
“It was so touching, I could not stop applauding. I came because I saw a letter in my front door, so I didn’t expect much but all the parts of the performance was good. The Christmas message that Pastor preached was something that I always want to keep in my heart. – Fabian
“I came with my family to watch the Cantata and I particularly enjoyed the second act with Anna in it. I really loved the story of Anna learning about the love of her family through the Christmas Miracle. The Pastor’s message? I think that that is the truth. We cannot go to heaven if we sin. But the fact that God already forgave us really touched me. Pastor Terry Henderson of ‘Good News New York Church’ asked the audience. “If God says we are washed~?” “Washed!” “If God says we are sanctified~?” “Sanctified!” “If God says we are justified~?” “Justified!”
At three o’ clock 1500 people came and in seven o’ clock 2600 people filled all the seats. 4100 people of Orlando heard the good news of God and happily accepted the Gospel. The Christmas Cantata, which makes the whole of the USA happy. While touring thirteen cities, most of America is slowly soaking up the happiness of hearing the Gospel of God. The Cantata, which delivers happiness, is to be continued.