Gospel Spotlight: Awesome Praise Experience to tackle crime
Minister and singer Marcellus Osbourne remembers a peaceful St Catherine community called Spring Village, where you could fall asleep with your door unlocked.
This memory is smudged by crime that has pervaded the area throughout the years, prompting Osbourne to establish the Awesome Praise Experience. The free three-day event aims to empower youth and denounce crime, especially since he was directly affected when his aunt was murdered a few years ago in Spring Village.
“She was in her ’70s; raped, tied to a tree in some bushes and the person cut her throat like some animal,” Osbourne told THE WEEKEND STAR.
“That is far away from the neighbourhood I grew up in. So from a Christian perspective, we want to give youths a sense of life and encourage them to be our brother’s keeper so there won’t be instances like that again.”
The event returns for its second staging after a one-year hiatus. It will be held from March 22 to 24. It kicks off with ‘Jesus to the Streets’, which is live evangelism in neighbouring schools and hotspots across Old Harbour. The second day features an empowerment conference at the Spring Village Development Foundation, the same location for the family fun day and concert planned for the final day. The concert is headlined by Osbourne alongside former lead singer of Katalyst Crew, Radic, and Di Anointed Vale.
“We had a great turnout the first year, and I am hoping for a better turnout this year,” said Osbourne, who released his debut album, Grace For My Sorrow, in 2014.
“It’s free to the public because I don’t want people to miss out. I’m trying to reach the lost and impoverished, and would hate if they missed out because of an entry fee. But if someone comes and wants to make an offering, they can.”
The organiser shared that it is challenging to execute the event without sponsorship, but his passion to give back to his community is a constant motivation.
“We’re trying to curtail the crime and violence and give youths a positive outlook on life,” he said. “Hopefully, with more sponsorship in the future, we can have the event on a wider scale and help the development centre by buying equipment needed for the youngsters on vocational programmes.”