Bringing glory to God with choirs and recorders
People already made music in biblical times. King David had 4,000 people play musical instruments to the glory of God. Jesus and His disciples sang a hymn at the Last Supper. And in order to ensure that music remains a firm component of our faith life, it is encouraged and supported all around the world.
Music is a wonderful gift
So writes District Elder Emery from Canada in a letter to all Canadian brothers and sisters. In his letter, he expresses how much he misses participating in live divine services. His hope is that many brothers and sisters will come back to the choir when it is possible again. He notes that one positive thing about the online services was the fact that he was able to become better acquainted with new and different musical styles and songs.
He goes on to emphasise how important it is to support and encourage children in singing, piano, organ, and other instrumental lessons. And the District Elder also shared his own experience: as a child, every time his district rector visited the congregation, he would ask the children about their progress in their music lessons and even ask them to perform. This motivated the young brothers and sisters in faith to continue practising and helped them find joy in making music.
The music department of the Regional Church of Congo Southeast also wants to support and promote musicians. It was for this reason that deputy music director Eric Mwamba organised a meeting for all orchestra leaders, organists, and choir directors. On 10 October they assembled in various churches and other locations to meet virtually in a video conference.
Around 185 leading figures in the areas of choral, orchestral, and organ music thus worked together to develop a training programme, plan activities, and discuss the organisation of choirs and orchestras. They also made plans to compile a collection of hymns for the entire Regional Church. The first training courses are set to take place on Sunday, and more are planned for December. The music department of the Regional Church of Congo Southeast is hoping to get back to full musical capacity again soon after the pandemic has passed.
A long trek for recorders
In February 2021, a shipment of recorders embarked on a journey of some 7,600 kilometres from Amsterdam, Netherlands to Paramaribo, Suriname. The reason? The International School of Amsterdam had donated recorders to the New Apostolic charity known as the Stichting Corantijn for the Sunday School children of the Paramaribo congregation. The children began by learning to play the scales and then several songs. Soon after, they were already performing in front of an enthusiastic audience comprised of their parents.
A song of thanks for music leaders
In order to show their gratitude to music leaders who had to contend with such challenges during the pandemic, the Music Work Groups from Austria and Switzerland invited all those responsible for music in their working area to a prayer and virtual meeting. Apostle Matthias Pfützner led the prayer, which took place in the church in St. Gallen and was transmitted live via IPTV. In addition to a spiritual part, there was also an practical part in which the music leaders had the opportunity to share their concerns and joys by way of an online survey. The Work Groups will include the results in their agendas for the future. And of course the evening also had the benefit of a musical framework—not only to the joy of those responsible for music, but also to the praise of God.
You can read about the great musical celebration to the glory of God organised by David in 1 Chronicles 23: 5. And the passage in which Jesus sings with his disciples at the Lord's Supper is found in Matthew 26: 30.
Democratic Republic of the Congo, Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, Canada, Suriname, Congregational life