"Stream of Praise," a California-based music ministry has had a profound influence on the music sung in churches in China. If you have been to China and attended an urban house church or a "youth service" at a Three-self Church, then you have most likely listened to, or sung, their songs. Founded in 1993, they have written 330 songs, and sung at more than 1000 events around the world.
Even though there has been no legal distribution channel for their music in China, CD's brought in from Hong Kong and Taiwan, and in later years, the internet have made them extremely popular among Christians in the mainland.
According to the mainland site Gospel Times, "Stream of Praise" performed their first ever concert in Shenzhen on August 9, 2014 at a "Service of Praise and Thanksgiving" to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the reopening of churches in the city. More than 5000 people attended the service.
I was introduced to "Stream of Praise" music at a Three-self church in Beijing, and have long hoped for a time they could sing on the Mainland. That day has now come. To be sure, it was in Shenzhen, which generally has a level of openness not found in other places in China; however, as the Chinese say "yi bu yi bu." (一步一步)One step at a time.
Can their second concert be too far off? I hope not.
The press release about the Shenzhen concert can be found here (in Chinese).
A list of upcoming concerts in the US can be found here.
Go here to see a photo gallery of the concert.
Here is a video with a sample of some of the songs on their latest album, "His Glory is Here."
The original Gospel Times article also includes a Youku video clip of the Shenzhen Concert.
Photo Credit: Stream of Praise
Joann Pittman is senior vice president of ChinaSource and editor of ZGBriefs. Prior to joining ChinaSource, Joann spent 28 years working in China, as an English teacher, language student, program director, and cross-cultural trainer for organizations and businesses engaged in China. She has also taught Chinese at the University... View Full Bio