Jubilation, praise and worship were the prevailing mood when multitude of Malawians who flooded Maula Prison Ground in Lilongwe to witness the finest tunes from top-rated US spiritual singer Don Moen on Saturday.
The prison is one of the country’s overcrowded correctional facilities where inmates eat once a day and incessantly live at the risk of dying of preventable diseases, but outsiders had every reason to edge closer to the dreaded complex.
Since morning, melodic sounds seeping from colossal speakers kept hammering the thick walls of the congested cells where the convicts and those awaiting trial in the barbed fence were locked up while outsiders hanged out with Don Moen and his six-strong band.
Clearly, ‘the Don’ was in his field and the patrons had a rare field day with the musician-cum-evangelist right from the start to the last bow at the Love Malawi Festival.
He took over the stage from festival convener, Evangelist Andrew Palau, who preached the Word of God to the people from the capital and beyond who packed the open-air venue.
In a stimulating string of continuity, the international singer asked the masses to take heart, saying whatever problems Malawi is going through shall pass because no storm can overpower God.
“There is no storm that God cannot calm. In Isaiah, He says: ‘I knew you before you were born.’ Malawi, I called you before you were born, so whatever storm you may be going through shall pass.”
The brief sermon proved more than just an ice-breaker. The singer repeated the statement when introducing new songs, including the mesmeric hit When Oceans Rise which followed God Will Make a Way.
The patrons sang along, clapped in the air and danced all the way as the soothing tunes poured.
Moen testified to God’s ability to solve seemingly impossible situations, saying he and his wife have had five children in seven years following over a decade of childlessness.
He explained: “For 12 years, we thought we were never going to have children, God gave us a child. The following year, we had another child, then another one and then another until we had five children.
“If God could do this to us, I have faith that he can do the same to you. But you have to be married first. You need to have a husband or a wife first.”
The testimony transitioned to the hit He is Able in which he pays tribute to God who “never sleeps or tires”.
The crowd sang along heartily—and such was the euphoria thorughout his hour-long performance that he calls himself blessed that people are familiar with the lyrics everywhere he goes.
As the show faded to a shutdown, the versatile artist produced a violin, played it with unique masterly and bowed out with a promise for more and better performance the following day.
Moen said he and his compatriots are praying that God fixes the difficult situations troubling the country.
Before his gripping performance, Palau’s sermon pursuaded hundreds to accept Jesus Christ as their savior. The born-again Christians were assigned counsellors to guide them on the new spiritual journey. n