Egypt (MNN) — The first Christian music program to be broadcast live in Egypt is touching the hearts of those who might otherwise never enter a church.
SAT-7, a Christian satellite television ministry to the Middle East and North Africa, is airing We Will Sing weekly. The program draws a wide audience and gives them a better understanding of God's true character.
We Will Sing presenter and singer, Maher Fayez, personifies the Biblical story of the prodigal son. The Lord called him from the streets to His side, and a burden was laid on Fayez's heart for those living in the situation he left.
A series of events, with which many SAT-7 viewers relate, marked the singer's journey.
At the age of 9, Fayez experienced a defining moment in his childhood. He had always loved music, and Coptic melodies attracted him to church. While in the choir, he created new renditions of old music. But the music instructor took his renditions as a distortion of sacred hymns and kicked Fayez out of the class.
He became bitter and vowed never to attend church again.
At 16, Fayez became frustrated with his parents and ran away from home. His father tried to reconcile with Fayez and asked him to come home, but Fayez refused. Despite the rejection, Fayez was aware that his father continued to pray for him.
At the age of 24, Fayez had attended the High Institute of Music in Egypt and composed 21 songs for famous secular singers. He prospered financially as a singer, but spent it on drinking, drugs and gambling. Eventually, his fame started to diminish, and Fayez began questioning his choices.
One night as he was wandering the streets, something drew him to his father's house. His arrival was an answer to years of relentless prayers. That night, the father and son prayed together, and Fayez committed his life to Christ.
Today, he is a Christian celebrity and praise leader in Egypt. His testimony resonates with millions of viewers, and his musical style connects with a wide audience, including many who don't yet follow Christ.
As a praise leader, he chooses to use a Sufi style of music. It's a Middle Eastern style used in religious worship. Once his team started to play this type of music, Fayez says, "We made friends with the street people."
In addition to his new weekly show, We Will Sing, Fayez leads weekly worship at the Church of God in Cairo. Some of the attendees are not believers in Christ, yet the music triggers tears. They tell Fayez, "Something different happens when we come…there is a different spirit in this place."
Fayez has also led worship at a number of special events broadcast by SAT-7. Recently, he led praise and worship at Count It Right, a four-day mega conference held in the Egyptian desert that attracted over 10,000 attendees daily.
Pray that through SAT-7's program, many people will come to know the Lord. Ask God to give Fayez the strength to continue his worship ministry.