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Swahili Song Exchange

The African folk song Bwana Awabariki (“May God Give You a Blessing”) is easy for all ages to learn! It is a popular cultural song in Kenya that many of the children know and sing often. In countries other than Kenya, most children will know the Swahili hymn Hakuna Mungu Kama Wewe, another popular song meaning “There is No God Like You.”

Teaching your congregation or choir one of these songs is a great way to connect with Zoe Empowers children through the shared worship of God. In this way, we form reciprocal partnerships with the children that are not just about us giving them our resources, but also realizing that they have much to teach us in return. By learning to worship God in another language, we are tangibly reminded of the diversity of God’s people around the world, and that every tongue can sing God’s praises.

Ideas for using this resource:

  • Teach your congregation the song by using it as a benediction in worship each week. This could be used in conjunction with a Zoe Empowers fundraiser, taking a special offering in worship, a sermon series on social justice/related topics, or in preparation for sending off your church representatives on a Zoe Empowers Trip!
  • Use the song as the choral response/choir performance on a special Sunday in worship. This would work well on any Sunday that your church chooses to feature Zoe Empowers in worship, a Sunday focused on mission/special offering, or widely celebrated church days such World Communion Sunday.
  • Have someone from your church videotape the Zoe Empowers children singing the song while on a Zoe Empowers trip (most children will already know the song), bring back the video and show it in church. The video could be used as a way of teaching the congregation the song, or as a way of connecting with the children that you are partnered with as Hope Companions through the universal medium of music.