In this series on music sung in churches in China, I have highlighted songs from three categories, or genres. The first three posts featured translated western hymns found in The New Chinese Hymnal that is used in registered churches. The three songs I wrote about were “Holy, Holy, Holy,” “Father We Praise Thee,” and “Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross.”
In the two posts previous to this one I introduced two songs from the Canaan Hymns collection, which have been popular within rural house churches for the past couple of decades: “5 O’clock in the Morning in China” and “Lord, I Love You.”
The fourth genre that I want to highlight is contemporary worship music, produced by the California-based ministry Stream of Praise. Here’s what we wrote about them in a Chinese Church Voices post in 2016:
Over the past decade Stream of Praise, a music ministry based in the United States, has had a tremendous influence on church music in China, particularly in the urban house churches and youth services in the Three-Self churches.
Since they were founded in 1993, they have published more than 600 songs and released more than 50 albums. In addition, they have traveled all over the Mandarin-speaking world leading worship in Mandarin.
I was introduced to their music during a weekly “youth service” at the registered church I attended in Beijing in the early 2000s. It was the first time I had heard what could be called “contemporary worship music” in Chinese and I wondered where it was coming from. It turns out it was Stream of Praise.
One of my favorites is called “Stream of Praise.” I guess you could say it is their flagship song!
Another one of my favorites is called “The Precious Cross,” which you can listen to here on the post from 2016.
Albums and songs can be purchased in iTunes or directly from their website.
And if you’d like to attend one of their concerts, here is a link to their tour schedule. They will be in Toronto and New York in September, then head to Europe after that. And for those of you in Los Angeles, they will be there in October.
I hope they make it to the Twin Cities sometime!
Note: Post updated on November 6 with corrected links and attribution.
Image credit: Coldwater Creek, by Billy Wilson, via Flickr
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 of Northwestern-St. Paul …View Full Bio
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