Gottfried Schiele and Eberhard Haberkorn took a trip to Namibia on what they dubbed the “Bell’s Tour” in July 2019, as part of the 60th anniversary celebrations of Evangeliums Rundfunk (ERF) Medien, TWR’s German partner.
Eberhard Haberkorn, TWR German Ministry Coordinator for Southern Africa, takes us through the journey…and says…
(Photos by Gottfried Schiele)
“Embarking on what would be a very long trip, I travelled north from KwaZulu Natal (KZN) to our TWR offices in Croydon. Gottfried Schiele and I had to do some creative packing to get three big protective cases for the handbells, a folding table, speakers and another two cases with sound equipment, our luggage and promotional material, into our VW Polo. And we succeeded!
After two days on the road, our first bell’s concert was held on the farm Dabis, close to the town Helmeringhausen in the southern part of Namibia. We were received with great enthusiasm by our hosts, the owners of the guest farm.
We were surprised that over 40 people attended with keen interest. Some even travelled over 150 km to be there! After the concert, Gottfried invited the audience to ring the bells themselves and ask questions.
The next day a group of about 20 German tourists visited the farm. After a sunset tour of a small part of the farm, we staged an impromptu concert which was a great experience for the visitors, having never seen nor heard of handbells.
The next two days we travelled towards Walvisbay and Swakopmund.
The concert on Saturday evening in the Swakopmund Stadtmission (city mission) was also well attended by friends of ERF and others. On Sunday morning we participated at the church Service at the Lutheran Church. Gottfried accompanied the hymns with his bells and played a few pieces afterwards. I shared about the Oasis Project with the congregation.On Tuesday we headed north to Otjiwarongo, where we had some time to recuperate. (Photos by Gottfried Schiele)
The next morning we held a concert at the German school, which was well received by pupils as well as teachers. The same evening, a concert was held at the Otjiwarongo Retirement Village.
Our next trip was to Tsumeb for an evening concert in the Church Hall; also well visited and appreciated.
The next morning, we travelled 60 km to Grootfontein to treat the scholars of the German School in town. Afterwards, Gottfried taught four music students the “ins and outs” of the handbells, which they clearly enjoyed!