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Gospel Soundcheck

ChapmanFamilyphoto.JPGGrammy- and Dove-Award winning artist Steven Curtis Chapman, along with his wife MaryBeth and eldest children Emily, Caleb, and Will, are scheduled to appear Wednesday, August 6 on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” Their interview with Robin Roberts, done at the family home in TN, will air during the 8 am (ET) hour.
The family will then appear in a live interview from L.A. on “Larry King Live” on August 7th, and will be featured in an upcoming issue of People magazine.
The Chapmans will be opening their hearts about the loss of their daughter and sister Maria Chapman this past May 21st.
The decision to speak publicly was not an easy one, and these will be the first interviews the family has participated in since Maria’s death.


In mid-July, Chapman returned to the stage, and has been openly sharing his feelings about losing his youngest adopted daughter.
Chapman’s manager, Jim Houser, said in a press release:

“Initially Steven talked about never doing any concerts or media ever again. But quickly God began to show Steven that if he ever believed the songs he was writing, singing and recording before May 21st and Maria’s loss, that they must still be true now. It’s the family’s hope that these appearances will serve as a chance to proclaim to a watching world what they know and are deeply convinced of even in these difficult days, the Gospel is true and faith in Christ is our Hope.”

Chapman has written a new verse to his current single, “Yours,” from his latest project, This Moment. “Yours” will be available for purchase via digital service providers including iTunes, Amazon, Rhapsody, and Napster, starting today, with 100% of Chapman’s royalties from the sales of this single being donated to Shaohannah’s Hope, the organization the Chapmans founded several years ago to help families reduce the financial barrier of adoption. As of July 2008 Shaohannah’s Hope has provided grants to over 1700 families wishing to adopt orphans in the United States and around the world.
Producer Matt Bronlewee and co-writer on “Yours” Jonas Myrin have also joined the effort with 100% of their royalties from the single going to Shaohannah’s Hope. Additionally, monies received by Sparrow records from the sales of this single, after deduction of expenses and royalties, will be donated to Shaohannah’s Hope.
For more about Steven Curtis Chapman, visit his website. To learn more about Shaohannah’s Hope, visit the organization’s website.
According to a statement issued by Chapman’s manager, Jim Houser, the family had just hours before the accident celebrated the engagement of eldest daughter Emily, and were preparing for a party later that evening to celebrate their son Caleb’s high school graduation.
I’m always at a loss when reporting stories like this, and my heart goes out to the Chapman family. What do you do, what do you say?
I had a chance to sit down with Steven Curtis Chapman during Gospel Music Week this past April. Chapman took time to share the story of how Maria came to join his family.
It started when his daughter Emily was in grade school, long before the Chapman family had considered adopting any children, long before Shaohannah joined their family, long before they dedicated their lives in ministry to orphans.
Chapman says that when Emily was six or seven years old, she would come home talking about a friend named Maria and how she wished Maria could come to live with the Chapman family.
Maria came from a troubled home, and her story and his daughter’s concern for her inspired Chapman to write the song, “Who’s Gonna Love Maria?” which appeared on his 1992 album, The Great Adventure.
Fast forward 15 or so years. The Chapman’s have adopted two girls from China, Shaohannah and Stevey Joy, and Chapman was again in China doing ministry when he met a little orphaned girl with a heart condition. When he asked the family caring for her what her name is, they told him, “We call her Maria.”
“And I’m like, You’ve got to be kidding me,” Chapman says, “‘cuz all I can think about is, Who’s gonna love Maria, who’s gonna love Maria?”
When he got home, Chapman told his family about Maria, admitting that, with five kids, adopting another child would be crazy. But the more the family talked and prayed about it, the more it became clear that God was giving them the green light to adopt one more time.
So they adopted Maria.
In a twist of irony, Chapman’s label released his new album, Cinderella, just days after Maria’s death. In a press release, Dan Raines & Jim Houser, Chapman’s managers, acknowledge the awkward timing and add, “[A]s many of you know this edition of the album had been planned for several months, based on the success and impact of the song ‘Cinderella.’ Perhaps, it’s more important than ever that the message of this song reach as many people as possible. May God be glorified.”
Condolences can be sent to the Chapman family at P.O. Box 150156 Nashville, TN 37215.
In lieu of flowers, the Chapman family requested that donations be made to Shaohannah’s Hope Ministry, P.O. Box 647 Nashville, TN 37065 or www.shaohannahshope.org/maria
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