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Friday, February 7, 2014
Christian Kewitsch, focolarino, orchestra director in a school in Hamburg. The choice of God lived in professional life and art as a priviledged way to bear witness and to transmit evangelical values.

“Since I felt the call to give myself to God in the Focolare, it seemed that the world of art and many years of studying music, no longer had a place in my life. But, paradoxically, various encounters and relationships that came about were pushing me to listen to my artistic side and to follow its stimulus. I always had a great trust in my friends of the Focolare, who never tried to give me answers but instead stood by me, sharing my doubts and questions. In the meantime I was also doing other jobs, and so it seemed to me that the artistic world was like a train that had already left the station which I was not able to ride.

In the meantime I disovered that what God gives us never corresponds exactly to our thoughts. For example, I looked for a job in the field of music in some of the most difficult areas in my city, among the migrants and the poorest, so as to place myself at their service. But in many years of intense searching I came up with nothing. It was one of my colleagues, instead, who told me that the school where I anm working now, was offering me a completely different challenge but just as fascinating: young people full of material wealth, but often impoverished spiritually, complete satisfaction in everything but experiencing profound dissatisfaction.

So now it has been two and a half years that I have been working at the Christianeum in  Hamburg High School specializing in humanities, a school of vast musical activities with choirs, brass bands and orchestras that involve about a hundred teens. I direct the two symphony orchestras of the school: one with teens from 10 to 12 years of age (at present it has 65 membrs) and that of the youth from 13 to 18 (52 members).

This job requires above all the ability to create relationships with the teens, and also with the parents and with my colleagues. Many times it meant to learn to forgive (myself and the others), starting again each time, believing in the others over and beyond any sort of disillusionment, to commit myself without vested interests, paying attention to each single person and not just to the group. And all these with the premise of the continuous search to acquire an always greater professional competence, striving to involve as many colleagues as possible; in fact, we are three who take care of the orchestra. Before deciding on anything, we try to understand what the others are thinking, listening to each other with attention. Thus we experience the reciprocity of love with the teens and the adults. I was surprised when they noted that in the musical activities of the school “there is always more the breath of the good spirit that creates an atmosphere of friendly collegiality that takes in everyone”.

I can sense that my life is unified inasmuch as I remain consistent with my life’s choices  and I experience the same freshness and novelty of the times when I started to live the Gospel convinced then up to now, that only in this way, together with many others, can the world be changed”.

Profile Christian Kewitsch