Bryan College’s chorale singers recently completed a ten-day tour where they visited multiple churches and schools in Tennessee, Kentucky, and Indiana. The group of forty-two students put on twelve shows in ten days under the direction of Dr. Kimberly Keck, with Ms. Erica Holloway serving as tour coordinator. Many of the locations visited were made possible through relationships with alumni and the families of current students.
Students had the unique opportunity of performing several selections in chapel at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. While in Kentucky, the entire group was also able to visit the Ark Encounter, a full-size replica of Noah’s Ark.
Chorale’s mission statement is “Encounter God. Encourage His People. Expand His Kingdom. Expressed in Music; Equipped in Truth.” Through their performances, Chorale hopes to show the love of Christ in a powerful way by creating a unique space where the audience can be reminded of God’s steadfastness, grace, and love.
Chorale President Emily Garmon (Piano Pedagogy, ‘19) frequently reminds chorale members that “ministry happens on and off the risers”. Hotels, host homes, and other experiences outside of performances present numerous opportunities for students to share the Gospel and their mission to “encounter/encourage/expand” in the name of Christ.
In addition to proclaiming the Gospel to unbelievers, Chorale also seeks to encourage churches through the unique medium of music. The power of music to speak to people on a deeper level and its tendency to remain with the listener long after the concert ends make the songs performed by chorale a strong tool in reminding believers of Scriptural truths.
The tight-knit group of students bid farewell to thirteen seniors at their annual Chorale Banquet. Garmon reflected fondly on her time in chorale throughout her college career, saying-
As a senior, Chorale itself is what I will miss most after graduation. This group and this ministry has been so formative in my walk with Christ. To be part of a group who is in the same season of life is special enough, but on top of that, it’s a group who has a similar focus in mind: knowing Christ and making him known. Chorale has felt like a “home base” in college of sorts… but even more than that, Chorale tour for me has meant seeing God move in powerful ways and being humbled in service unto Him. Being the president of the choir this year, I entered this position thinking of all the wonderful things I was going to contribute to the group and had a point-by-point plan of how I was going to be an effective leader. Thank God He breaks us away from our point-by-point plans. He has used this year especially to humble me in ways I couldn’t have possibly imagined. He gave me a platform for ministry, building relationships, and for sharing my testimony. Each concert this year, I spoke about my personal story, which has been marked with significant tragedy. It was so emotionally draining each night, but I witnessed God use it in so many ways. People approached me after concerts with tears streaming down their faces, and would wrap me in their arms and thank me for sharing my testimony. I never expected this ministry would be so impactful, not only to the listeners of the music, but also for us as the singers. Chorale, in essence, has been a family to me in the midst of college strife. It has by far been the most life-giving aspect of Bryan College, and the group where I can most tangibly see people striving to put Christ Above All.
Congratulations to chorale on another successful tour and making His name known!
You can hear additional student testimony from Joshua Goodpaster and the impact of chorale on his life here.
See pictures, video, and more from tour on the Chorale Facebook page.