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When Songs Save Lives
Dan Ucherek’s new album is supporting orphan care in Guatemala

“The songs that I write come from God and the things that He lays on my heart.”

He always knew he would be a musician. But little did he know as a child how his music would be used to change his own life – and transform the lives of others.


Dan Ucherek grew up in a musical family. “I would walk around the house singing all the time. I learned to play guitar and drums, and have been involved in worship bands since I was 13.” Music has played a greater role for Dan as well. “It’s has always been a way for me to share Christ with people of all ages, both in and out of the church. Whether sharing the Gospel in a third-world village, teaching Sunday school to kids, or playing in front of a crowd at a concert, the Lord has used it as a way to spread His name.”


Dan’s life was changed forever when his wife Christi went on a short-term mission trip to Guatemala in 2009. As her team gathered around her and prayed in the Guatemala City airport for Dan to be moved to adopt internationally, God was answering that prayer in their home state of Illinois. “When Christi and I were first dating, I told her that I would never adopt nor live overseas… obviously, God had different plans! While she was on the trip she met a little girl who God used to open my eyes to the plight of the orphan. God ultimately used this little girl to lead our family to adoption and later to full-time orphan care ministry.”

Now Dan and Christi and their three children live in Guatemala and work for Orphan Outreach. “While we were in Ethiopia in 2011 to finalize the adoption of our first son, Malakai, we felt the Lord’s call on our lives – a distinct understanding that that there is more to this life than we know, there are more people that need to hear about Jesus, that there is so much more than our own little world out there and there are people dying every day without the hope of Jesus Christ.”

Every day is different for Dan and his family as they serve Orphan Outreach’s ministry partners in Guatemala. “The culture, the people, the way things are done, everything is different. Our duties are wide-ranging, but our primary focus is to spread Jesus, come alongside the Guatemalans, and further the mission on the ground here. One of my favorite things to do is go to a ministry site and just love the children. That reminds us of why we are here, keeps our focus, and gives me an opportunity to show the children here how God has called men to lead their families as well as the Church.”

Dan’s music now shares the stories of pain and hope he has seen serving in the country he now calls home. When a generous donor offered to fund his first CD, he knew immediately that the Lord was calling him to use the music to bring light ot those in need. All of the proceeds from the new album “We All Need Jesus,” from Dan’s band The Beautiful Gate help vulnerable children through the ministry of Orphan Outreach. “The children that we serve in Guatemala need hope, love, and Jesus, and we pray that this album will help to further the ministry here.

“When you look into the children's eyes and see such a longing for a family, for a mom and dad, it’s hard to know that they will never have that in the sense that we think of it. But it is all the more reason to be there for them, mentor them, and show them that they are loved by us and by God. It’s also motivating to think that by showing them the love of Jesus, that they can some day have a healthy family relationship of their own. Our prayer is that orphans would no longer be creating more orphans.”

We All Need Jesus is available at the ITunes store for only $9.99, and proceeds support Orphan Outreach’s work in Guatemala. For Dan, the album is yet one more way people can care for orphans. “God doesn't call everyone to be missionaries or adopt or foster, but everyone can do something! Mentor a child in the foster system, participate in programs that care for children in your community that are at risk, or buy a CD that the proceeds go to international orphan care! We’re all called to do something.

“I pray God will create a ripple effect through my music to touch not only the ones who hear it, but also those who never will.”


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