Sunday, December 14, 2014


Yesterday afternoon we went to a lovely Christmas program at Grace Bible Church.  We arrived 30 minutes ahead of time and had to sit in the annex, as the church was already full to overflowing.  This turned out to be an advantage, as there was a large screen so we had a much better view of the performers than if we had been sitting in the main auditorium.

The program began with the excellent small orchestra playing Bach's Sleepers Wake chorale.  Lovely!  There was a large mixed choir, very well trained, and a perfectly wonderful soloist named Sandra Harris.  Wow! could she sing!

There were a few quiet, contemplative songs, but most of them were the sort of music you'd typically hear in a large, evangelical church.  Quite loud, with upward modulations in key toward the end, and building up to a really loud, rambunctious finish.

Altogether enjoyable, and a very Christ-centered program.

This was a notable contrast to the entertainment another choir offered to our potluck dinner meeting at church this past Tuesday.  This was a small choir of seniors.  (Well, the choir on Saturday was pretty much all seniors, also, except for the soloist.)  Now, I think it's wonderful that there are outlets like this for seniors who have always loved to sing.  I'm talking about your average church choir member--not much training, but loves to sing.

It was obvious that they had worked hard on their music, which was all accompanied by taped music.  But it was also striking that none of their music mentioned the Christ of Christmas.  It was all about the trappings of the holiday, with a lot of attention to Santa Claus, Rudolph, sleigh rides, "chestnuts roasting" etc.

I enjoyed this choir, in a sort of "campy" way, and also genuinely enjoyed their love of singing.  Still I went home impressed with how empty Christmas is without the baby born in Bethlehem, the real reason for the season.

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