MP3 Debbie Fortnum - Oasis of Thirst
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12 MP3 Songs
GOSPEL: Contemporary Gospel, POP: Today's Top 40
Debbie was born in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada on April 9, 1970. When she was five years old, she lived in the house next door to the church. One day, while sitting down at the church piano, discovered that she could play it without ever being taught! Debbie composed her first song at age six and has never looked back.
She was raised in another little country church in Veneta, Oregon where her father pastored. She was baptised there at age 8...
At age 9, Debbie felt called into full-time ministry and soon thereafter was struck with a debilitating disease, where she endured a three year battle of pain and gradual blindness. It was in this painful season of her pre-teen years that God prepared her for a life of worship, songwriting and ministry. As she read and memorized the Bible plus hundreds of hymns, she began to write worship songs and hymns that expressed both her faith in God and the Scriptures which were guiding her strength. But her health and eyesight continually deteriorated until she was declared legally blind.
God graciously infused immense faith in her during those years. As she propped her Bible up, she'd sing the Word of God for hours, spontaneously writing songs to Him from the Scriptures. As a 10 year old, she chose a theme song to help her during this trying season of life: "It Is Well With My Soul".
Three years later, Debbie experienced the miraculous Hand of God instantly heal her, restoring her to perfect health with perfect vision!
Not long after her healing, at age 12, Debbie sang and played the piano for the first time publicly. She continued to sing/play for many venues throughout Junior High and High School including banquets, weddings, funerals, retreats, community events, and civic celebrations. She became the full time pianist for her father's church at age 13, and helped develop the worship team as the chief musician. At age 15 she wrote the town's theme song simply entitled, "Veneta". In addition to music, Debbie was very involved with sports and leadership.
After high school, Debbie attended CANADIAN BIBLE COLLEGE in Regina, SK, furthering the development of other ministries by singing and leading worship for Youth / Missions Conferences, Chapels, and Concert Choirs, Vocal Training, and won first place in a Canadian Bible College Themesong Songwriting Contest.
She graduated in 1990 with a Diploma of Christian Ministries, with an emphasis in Evangelism & Church Planting.
It was also during this time that Debbie met a handsome Senior at CBC, named Scott Fortnum. In fact, the moment she saw him, Debbie knew that Scott Fortnum would one day be her husband.
The summer that she graduated from CBC, August 1990, married Rev. K. Scott Fortnum, the College Ministries Pastor at Sevenoaks Alliance Church in Abbotsford, B.C. After a few months, Debbie began serving alongside him through her worship and small group discipleship ministry.
One year later, in 1991, she formed an interdenominational College Worship Ministry with monthly Youth / Young Adult Worship Gatherings, the first of its kind in the area. By 1996, over 30 different denominations were represented at these monthly youth / college worship gatherings, called "Awakenings". Debbie often invited--and was accompanied by singers, worship leaders, songwriters and musicians from other denominations.
In mid-1996, Scott received an invitation to pastor a small church in Yarrow, BC to serve as Sr. Pastor. There were no plans for a small, rural farm town (!), but through a series of heart-changing events, God graciously led them to the tiny little church in Yarrow, whose doors were just about to close, and whose sheep were hurting.
Instantly, they knew this was exactly where God had placed them, so they buckled down and jumped into ministry! Scott boldly preached the Gospel, and Debbie formed a strong worship ministry leading, equipping and forming multiple worship teams within their rapidly growing congregation -- which has now tripled in size, holding double Sunday worship services!
Debbie officially stepped down from YAC Worship Ministry and handed it to the capable hands of a full time Worship Pastor, Dwayne Toews (also Administration & Lay Leadership Development). Debbie has also served as lay Director of the Women's Ministries at YAC.
Throughout the 1990's, Debbie was asked to sing and speak at Conferences, Retreats, and Worship and Evangelistic Events throughout the USA and Canada, even though none of her music had yet been recorded.
Through yet another series of events, Debbie's friends introduced her to Evangelist Dr. Ravi Zacharias. As a result, she was headed to Nashville to meet Dick and Melodie Tunney, Producer and Arranger for her first project, "Oasis of Thirst". Dick Tunney, internationally acclaimed musical director and producer, and Melodie is the founding member of the Grammy Award-nominated group "First Call". Both are Dove Award-winning songwriters for Steve Green, Larnelle Harris, Sandy Patti, the Imperials and many more artists.
Debbie incorporated her publishing/recording company called "Far Away Music Corporation" (https://www.tradebit.com) in the Fall of '99 to coincide with the release of her debut, "Oasis of Thirst".
Debbie's music began to receive impressive reviews immediately from newspapers, Internet music sites, and radio stations in the USA, Canada, and around the world. "Oasis of Thirst" has fixed Debbie and her music in the hearts of all who hear her musical messages of encouragement and truth. As a result, her growing, loyal following scooped up over 1,250 copies of her second CD release called "To Love and to Be Loved" before it was even released in Canada. Unprecidented sales has put Fortnum in the top 5 of all Canadian Artists in 2005!
She has shared the stage with Canadian greats such as Brian Doerksen at the National Day of Prayer, Luc Gingras and Mark Masri at the National Day of Prayer and Praise, and Lianna Klassen at the Canadian MOMS Conference, and led worship at the first ever Canadian Conference to host best selling author / speaker, Beth Moore.
Debbie is also the great (x4) granddaughter of Dr. Andrew Murray, the South African Author, Pastor, and Missionary Statesman who led a revival in the 1880's that shook the country! He has written such classics as "With Christ in the School of Prayer", "Humility", "The Ministry of Intercessory Prayer", and "The Spirit of Christ."
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