Our Impact

      May 3rd!  When I hear this date spoken out loud I immediately think back to the early 1990s when I was minister of music at First Baptist Church, Shepherdsville, KY, just south of Louisville.  It is the birthday of Elaine Swann, a special needs adult child of an alto in the Sanctuary Choir.  Elaine’s dad was an active deacon.  Each night after choir rehearsal, Elaine would make her way over to the organist and together they would pour out their touching rendition of “Silent Night”.  It was common place until the Christmas season rolled around and you heard her singing it on Christmas Eve.  Then it became a tear-jerker.

Elaine died just a few years ago, and up to that point I called her almost every May 3rd, to wish her a happy birthday.  I’ve been fortunate to meet several persons like Elaine over the course of my ministry.  I often wonder what it will be like to meet them in heaven when they are fully restored.  What impact did I have on them?

That leads me to think about ministry in general around the local church like ours.  We have so many things going on – meetings, rehearsals, prayer groups, community events, training, etc.  I realize it gets crazy at times, but, we need to remember that what we do now, that may seem like busy-work, may lead to decisions that have eternal significance.  The text of a song or the care shown by a Sunday School class may turn out to be the spark that starts a fire, or the wind that whips it into a blaze.

So, in our day to day, week to week, or month to month ministries and activities, be aware that your participation, faithfulness, and down-right hard work will probably have spiritual impact on someone, although you may never know it.

Carry on my friends!  Bill

 

Special Music

     I owe a great deal of thanks to members of our music ministry for all their hard work during Holy Week and Easter Sunday.  First, Sanctuary Choir, thank you so much for your beautiful choral work.  Orchestra, fantastic festive finish and hymn accompaniment Easter!  Sanctuary Bells, the work paid off!  Thank you for your hours of practice and determination.  Handbells is such a unique musical experience, aurally and visually.  Alice, Angela, David, Cindy, Penny, Wayne, and technicians, thank you for your contributions to our mid-day Holy week services.

Coming up May 3, 2017, at 6pm, we will host the group Brass Works from Chattanooga, TN.  This is a regional brass ensemble composed of music ministers and laypersons.  Of special interest to me are two members.  Carroll Wallace, recently retired Christian Church Minister, trombone player, and fellow graduate of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, KY, will be leading the group.  Carroll and I crossed paths in Seminary.  We both played in Seminary Winds under Douglas Smith, Professor of Instrumental Music.  Dan Hanson serves as one of the trumpet players.  Dan was my minister of music from about the 6th grade though my high school years.  Dan had a great influence on me and my vocational calling.  It will be a thrill for me to be a part of this event May 3.  I ask you to join us in our Sanctuary at 6pm to hear some great sacred music made by some very gifted and talented individuals.  You will not want to miss it!

Bill

 

Holy Week

     Holy Week is upon us!  There are many opportunities for us to observe and experience the drama which played out in the last few days of Jesus’ life on earth.  My hopes are you can take advantage of these gatherings without creating too much stress in your daily lives.  I am thankful for all the work our many volunteers put in during this season.

Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday, focusing on Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem.  Monday-Friday Mid-day Services run 12:15 to 12:45 followed by a lunch you can eat here or take with you.  Maundy Thursday at 7:30, our music ministry will present music and readings leading us through those final hours before the crucifixion and culminating with a live crucifixion scene.  Then we will gather Easter Sunday morning to celebrate specifically the resurrection of Christ.

I need to thank Alice, Angela, David Herring, and Greg Deahl for playing on “Take Our Bread” this past Sunday.  It’s great to have all this talent around. 

Orchestra and Children’s Choirs – There will be no rehearsals Monday, April 17.

Gratefully, Bill

 

Musical Growth

     Greetings Congregation!  Thank you so much for your robust participation in our congregational singing, especially with the new pieces placed in front of you lately.  The most recent, Worthy of Worship, is a great hymn of praise written by Church Music Professor and author Terry York.  His colleague Mark Blankenship composed the tune JUDSON exclusively for York’s text.  The tune is named after Judson Baptist Church, Nashville, where the two were both members at the time.  York included rich theology, declaring “How we worship God” (stanza 2) and 11 names for God in stanza 3.  It is worth singing again soon.  Thanks also to the Orchestra,  Alice, and Rocky, for their enhancement of the musical vehicle for the text.

This Sunday, we will be led by our Music Time for Pre-Schoolers,   directed by Donna McMurtrie and helpers.  We are always on the hunt for good people to help lead our children’s choir ministry.  If you feel that might be a good fit for you, just let me know.  Training is available for the basics and inspiration.  Being a trained musician IS NOT a prerequisite.  We need folks who are faithful, dependable, and  willing to serve.  Keep in mind that as our Children’s Choirs grow, we will eventually divide into 3 groups; pre-school, younger children, and older children with a director and helpers for each.  The possibilities are endless!

Gratefully,

Bill

 

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