The Alabama Baptist Children’s Honor Choir returned from its annual tour energized about the significant ministry opportunities it experienced, even beyond the music performed during two concerts in Lynn Haven, Fla.
The March 1-3 tour by the auditioned choir, which included 151 students in grades 4-6, took it to an area that had been ravaged by Hurricane Michael in October.
The choir, sponsored by the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions, brought a message of hope through music and word to two communities impacted by natural disasters.
At the first performance, a Saturday afternoon mini-concert held in a public park, Alabama Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers served hamburgers and hotdogs to attendees. That evening the choir presented a full concert at Emerald Coast Fellowship. At both locations, concertgoers received more than the gift of music and the message of the Gospel – gift cards provided through Alabama Baptist Disaster Relief were distributed to help area residents rebuild homes and lives.
State Missionary Karen Gosselin, who plans the tour and directs the choir, said the performance had been scheduled in the community long before Hurricane Michael hit, but she felt the Lord had called the choir to still travel and perform there for a reason.
“We felt that ‘for such a time as this’ Children’s Honor Choir just might be the method of hope from God that the residents hit hard by the storm could use,” Gosselin said, referencing Esther 4:14. “The songs already chosen for the children were of strength, hope, and belief!”
On Sunday, March 3, the choir performed in both services at Hillcrest Baptist Church in Enterprise, Ala. A few days prior, the community had recognized the 10-year anniversary of a tragic tornado, so several church members said they appreciated the choir’s songs for focusing on believing in the Lord even during difficult circumstances.
The choir performed 10 songs, and several included sign language, art, and dance. Some of the children also had speaking roles used as transitions between songs.
Gosselin said this tour was the most impactful she had been on because it was about more than the performances. She added that she enjoyed seeing the children not only learn their music but also learn how they as Alabama Baptists can participate in disaster relief and help those in need.”
Many times children do not see parents give,” Gosselin said. “I wanted them to see how the Cooperative Program works – to know how money is used to help people and, specifically in disaster relief, how people come to the rescue. I wanted them to see the Alabama Baptist ‘Yellow Shirt Army’ and let them be a part of it on their tour.”