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‘Amazing Grace’ sung in 60 languages

By Kristine L. Alave
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 19:35:00 07/24/2010

Filed Under: Music, Religion & Belief, Religions

MANILA, Philippines?Imagine 18,000 voices singing ?Amazing Grace? in 60 different languages.

Every Nation, one of the largest Christian ministries in the world, tried to set a Guinness World Record on Friday for a song sung in the largest number of languages by multiple singers.

Julius Fabregas, conference director of Every Nation 2010 in Manila, said no group has made an attempt at this scale. The closest was a bid by 200 people to sing ?Auld Lang Syne.?

Some 18,000 members from different parts of the world, as well as from the Philippines?it has the largest ministry in Asia?joined the communal singing on Friday at the SMX Convention Center, one of the highlights of a three-day conference.

Fabregas said they chose the hymn, ?Amazing Grace,? because it is one of the most translated songs in the world and because of its long Christian history.

?It?s a worship song. Some 18,000 people sang it to express their thanks to God. They sang about how God?s grace sustains them,? he explained.

Fabregas said the decision to stage a record-setting communal singing reflected the theme of the conference: "It doesn?t matter where you come from, or what language you speak ? we are all united in Christ."

The communal singing was led Hillsong worship leader and pastor, Darlene Zschech, a Christian singer-songwriter.

The song was sung in 60 different languages including Filipino, Arabic, Mandarin, Zulu, Farsi, Spanish and Cherokee Indian.

With 18,000 people singing simultaneously, it certainly was loud.

While singing, many participants were overcome with emotion and started crying.

Pastor Dennis Sy, who blogged about the event, said: ?We ended the night setting a new world record singing ?Amazing Grace? in 60 different languages... I love this church, I love my wife, I love Jesus.?

Fabregas said the event was not just for the Guinness World Records. ?Our worship is an expression of love. When there?s joy, you can?t stop singing.?

?Amazing Grace,? published in 1779, came into being on a slave ship. It was written by John Newton, an English poet and clergyman, who participated, supposedly reluctantly, in the slave trade.

According to the organization?s website, ?many people believe the song was actually an old African folk song that Newton might have heard wafting up from the hold of his slave ship.?



Copyright 2014 Philippine Daily Inquirer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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