Chris Tomlin discusses his experience with CompassionArt …

1. Why did you decide to participate in the CompassionArt project?

Chris Tomlin:  I have a deep love for and friendship with Martin and Anna Smith. When Martin came to me with the idea of this project it was an easy "yes" on my part. The pure motive behind this huge endeavor is inspiring and so honoring to God. I know that this project pleases the heart of God and will find His favor.

2. What is your vision/hope for CompassionArt?

Chris:  My hope is that this project is a huge financial success. And without shame, I can say that out loud because every cent goes to the "least and the last." And now the model has been set regarding the artists, publishers, record companies, etc. So I hope this reproduces itself among other streams in the music and art world. I am so proud that the people of faith are leading the way in this one. I really see "on earth as it is in heaven" stamped on this one!

3. Would you briefly share a favorite moment from the CompassionArt retreat and/or recording process?

Chris:  I didn't get to make it to the retreat for some health reasons and was so disappointed to miss out as I had been planning on being there for about a year. But it was great to meet up at Martin's house a short time after and still be a part of the writing process. Being together with some of my favorite people and writing with them was very special. Then, turning up the next day at Abbey Road and recording was over the top.

4. What is your favorite song on the CompassionArt record, and why?

Chris:  "Come to the Water." I was fortunate enough to have a part in writing this one. I love the energy of it and the collaboration with Martin, Kirk [Franklin] and the Watoto Choir. If you have heard my recent album, Hello Love, you know I have a heart and love for the Watoto kids, so it was especially cool to record this song with them.

5. Tell us a little bit about the charity that you chose and why it’s personally important to you.

Chris:  I chose Baby Watoto. This is part of the overall Watoto ministry in Kampala, Uganda, but specifically targets the babies that are being left on the streets, in the dumps, on the church doors because the mother has no resource or hope for the child. They call the facility Bulrushes because Moses was found in the "bulrushes." How fitting ... I've had the privilege of walking through this facility and seeing about 90 babies being cared for and loved at one time.  These babies would otherwise be dead. Can you imagine the scene of feeding 90 babies at once and putting them down for a nap? Amazing! They are doing such a great job that the local hospitals are bringing their sick babies to them because, in many cases, the care is better. I give these men and women a standing ovation for what they are doing.



For more information concerning the CompassionArt project, check out compassionart.co.uk.

For more information about Chris Tomlin, log on to christomlin.com.



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**This feature first published on February 19, 2009.