International youth organization brings Christmas to KC September 29

Without the stress of the season, now just might be a good time to enjoy a full-scale Christmas production.

Christmas in September cantata (1)
Christmas comes  September 29 at the Music Hall thanks to the traveling performance by the International Youth Fellowship. The performance is free. 

Christmas in September

By Kathy Feist

When Paul Lim was a pastor for Good News Mission in Detroit, Mich., a college student named Darrell Jones stumbled into his Bible Conference.

“We were talking about the secret of forgiveness,” recalls Lim. “He asked, ‘Am I really being forgiven by God?’ He had lots of condemnation.”

Jones came back a second day, and on that day, Lim says, he found forgiveness after reading Ephesians Chapter 2, verse 3:

“All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy,  made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.

“Once he realized forgiveness from God, he began a new life,” Lim says.

Jones, who was a theater major, now performs as part of the International Youth Fellowship (IYF) in the world-touring Gracias Christmas Cantata, which will be appearing at the Music Hall, September 29 at 7 p.m.

IYF act 3.jpg
The third act is the Hallelujah Chorus from Handel’s Messiah, performed by the chorus and orchestra. 

The Gracias Christmas Cantata is a music and stage spectacle consisting of three parts: an opera, a musical, and the Hallelujah Chorus from Handel’s Messiah. It is a Christmas performance enjoyed without the hustle of the season.

The performers are touring 28 cities across the United States and Canada. This is the first time it will appear in Kansas City. Thanks to sponsors, admission is free.

The IYF and the Good News Mission is a Christian-faith movement started in South Korea by Ock Soo Park in 1986 and 2001 respectively. It has 178 churches in South Korea and 582 international churches. The IYF consists of young people from around the world. It provides camps for children to attend.  Both preach the secret of forgiveness. Many stories, including Lim’s own, are very similar to Jones’ story.

“The good news is God’s forgiveness,” he says.

Lim, who has been in Kansas City since February, recently moved the Good News Mission from 101st Terrace and Wornall to 7900 Jarboe. Services are Wednesday and Sunday. To find out more, visit

Tickets can be printed out by visiting




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