The children’s choir has an annual outreach through music when can fit it in, usually at the end of the choir year. This entire event is important, as through it children participate in caring for others and the church in several small and big ways:
- We clean out our folders, sort music, and straighten up the choir room
- We organize ourselves and our folders for singing at a retirement home
- We talk about the infirmities of age and how we can help
- We sing with and for those who hear our performance, and greet them after we sing
- We go eat pizza with our choir and families afterwards (YAY!!)
For our final get together this school year the Our Saviour Children’s Choir visited Westminster Health Center, Westminster Manor, and Westminster Towers. We have visited Westminster previously, and it is always a marathon! Thank goodness for my fantastic helper, Judy Crozier. She understands children and anticipates their needs, as well as being a stickler for good worship and leadership habits. The kids love her and so do I.
On the day we sang, we gathered in the small Health Center Chapel by getting ourselves organized and singing through some of the harder music. We then went upstairs and sang a few pieces unaccompanied to those in the Health Center, many of whom do not get out except for meals. After greeting them and shaking hands, we walked through the building to the Manor and sang a few unaccompanied song at mealtime in the cafeteria. A lot of those people know us and they are always complimentary of the children, who converse with them a few minutes before running off down the hall to the Towers.
At the Towers we use the piano and have a more formal presentation. The music consists of songs we have sung over the previous year, and included J. S. Bach’s “Loving Shepherd” (the tune is “Sheep may safely graze”); “Hodie Christus natus est” by Michael Bedford; “Jesus was born”, a piece which the children’s choir composed for Christmas; and a gospel song, “This little light of mine”, on which every single child sang a short solo; and several other pieces. We closed singing our Royal Schol of Church Musicians song, “Non nobis, Domine” by William Byrd, preceded by singing two hymns with the audience, “Amazing Grace” and “All things bright and beautiful”.
The audience loves that our children sing well and sing a variety of music, rather than all contemporary or pop songs, and they particularly remark that we sing in other languages, especially Latin. One woman told the children she had been a music teacher and appreciated their good musicianship, and another said both her daughters majored in Latin in college and complimented the children on their pronunciation.
We all went to eat pizza afterwards, and had a good time. This summer we will keep in contact, and will start back weekly rehearsals in the fall. Thanks to all parents and others who help us with this choir.