Sanctuary Choir

Sanctuary Choir under the Direction of Bethany Sherry

Easter Sunday was celebrated with the Cantata “A Living Hope.” The Holy Week story was told through music by Tom Fettke and Thomas Grassi. The work used melodies of the nineteenth–century American hymnody, There were Shaker melodies and spirituals intertwined within this sacred story and included three soloists, moving seamlessly through the story with narration.

Why Join Our Sanctuary Choir?

All my life, I have been a part of the church music program in one capacity or another. I started in the children’s choir; this was a very hard time for my parents, as I did NOT want to get up and sing in front of people. However, looking back, my Dad had my number, and all my reasons were thwarted (I think he knew he was bigger than me and no reason would be good enough.) So I ‘joined.’

My Mom thought it a good idea for me to take piano lessons. Mom was not a slacker. She was every bit as persuasive as my Dad. Do you know how long a half hour practice time every day was? There was a timer on the stove. I hated that timer on the stove.

After children’s choir, I went on to ‘junior high choir’ and graduated to the High School age choir. By this time, I had gained some skill on the piano and I became an accompanist for the Raytown High School Choir and the Church Choir.

There was an epiphany when I went to a organ recital at the RLDS Auditorium. The organ was amazing, and the music was enthralling. Organ it was.

I am now 69 years old, my degree is in organ performance with emphasis in education, I spent 10 years on staff of the (now) Community of Christ Auditorium and Temple complex.

I presented recitals for the tourists who came in to see these spectacular instruments. And all the while, I played for churches throughout the Kansas City area, mainly United Methodist.. with a few United Church of Christ stints as well.

C of C Auditorium Organ

How did I get from hating it (music) to embracing so fully? Right. Mom & Dad. But when it became my choice, I was hooked.

So this is what I would like you to know about the church choir.

First, there is a big difference in going to worship, than creating worship. The choir is an amazing opportunity to create an atmosphere for others to worship. For some, it may be awkward at first, but not for long. You quickly become integral to something that is bigger than yourself. You participate in a different type of worship. It becomes more meaningful for you, and soon a part of how you worship.

Or, should I say worship becomes a part of you…

A good director can take care of so many ‘issues’ that plague so many people. Believe it or not, many choirs are made up of people who don’t know how to read music. If you cant ‘sing on key,’ the director knows how to pull you ‘on key.’ Reading music is looking at what goes up and goes down on the page.. giving you clues which way to go. Your memory and the guy next to you does the rest of the job.

When worship becomes a part of you, you will stop having to go to church – You will find that worship is a part of you and you will be excited to be there. It becomes fun and many people will depend on you as well. You will find that you belong at the church.

OK, there are health reasons as well.

Singing lowers your stress levels (!!!)
Singing is a natural anti-depressant
Singing easily increases your oxygen intake and improves circulation
Singing improves your posture
Singing improves mental-alertness
Choir is a confidence booster
Singing strengthens your throat muscles which can reduce snoring (you know who you are)

We will close with this.

Christianity is at a crossroads. We must either proclaim our faith, or the forces out there will proclaim a faith for you. The time for sitting on the outside is quickly fading. Our culture is getting weaker. There are those who believe very disturbing things and they are targeting you and your family.

If we don’t take up the way and proclaim Christ, we will find our way rockier and rockier. Christianity is now the most assaulted religion in the world. We must make our choices and soon. Those who think it cant happen here are fooling themselves. Even some congress members in Washington DC are capitulating to others who don’t agree with the freedoms the Constitution guarantees.

Singing in the choir is not the only choice we make anymore. It’s just the first easy step in keeping our way of life.

You do not have to make a weekly commitment to the church choir. We appreciate any participation you can offer – even if it’s only once a month! Practice only lasts about an hour but that hour can reduce stress, improve your health, and help your church become stronger and better able to present special music on a weekly basis.

Come, Join us in the Church Choir!

–Ric Price

Thanks go to Christy of the Prospect United Methodist Church for her article 20 reasons to join the Church Choir. I stole from it shamelessly.

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