Challenge to concert fundraiser fails to silence music

Challenge to concert fundraiser fails to silence music

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The award winning group the Katinas are Christian contemporary artists, who share their faith in Jesus Christ through music and testimony. Their concert at New Hope Church Sand Island Friday night is in some ways a resurrection.

"We're just happy that it could continue and that it was not canceled completely," pastor John Tilton said.

An atheist's legal challenge caused the State Department of Education to cancel the original Christmas fundraiser that featured Moanalua High School's orchestra and New Hope singers. But the church didn't give up. It changed the concert's format and venue. About 700 tickets were sold, 200 more than for the original show.

Tilton said people have responded.

"One lady showed up yesterday to the church. She's not a Christian. She just said, 'This is the right thing.' She gave us a check for $2,000," he said.

All concert proceeds will once again help Mercy Ships take its volunteer run medical mission to West Africa.

"There's six CT scanners in all of West Africa for 300,000,000 people," New Hope staff member Chad Brownstein said. "This state-of-the-art hospital ship, through donations, is able to bring that into countries and help thousands of people."

Mercy Ships matches every dollar donated. Over the past four years, the Moanalua High School and New Hope performance raised about $200,000. The situation that could have canceled this year's show has turned around.

"As Genesis 50:20 says, what sometimes is maybe meant for harm can be redeemed for good. And it will be accomplished for the people," Tilton said.

The story of the concert crisis made national headlines. How it turned out is also newsworthy.

Copyright 2012 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved