By Rev. Lori Ethridge
Minister to Senior Adults
Last Sunday morning when I cranked my car to drive in to church, I was already anticipating the Nine Lessons and Carols worship services. This is my second Christmas season being a part of Marietta FUMC, and I remembered how spectacular those worship services were in 2015. Imagine my surprise when on the radio I heard Krista Tippet interviewing Alice Parker. Many of you may know that Alice Parker is the “rock star” of choral music and author of Melodious Accord: Good Singing in Church. She studied and conducted with Robert Shaw at Julliard, and collaborated with him on arrangements of folk songs, spirituals and hymns that are still performed around the world today. Mrs. Parker will also celebrate her 91st birthday on December 16, 2016, and still makes joyful music with the choirs she conducts!
The timing of hearing this interview could not have been more perfect, priming the pump so to speak, for the beautifully inspiring morning worship services of Nine Lessons and Carols. Mrs. Parker said in the interview, “Singing is able to touch and join human beings in ways few other arts can.” I was so happy to affirm the truth of this quote through my experience of participating in those glorious worship services. I look forward to this Sunday’s Sing Noel event in order to join my voice with many others in the singing of favorite Christmas carols in the sanctuary at 5 p.m. According to Alice Parker, “We are all one in song.” She went on to say in the interview that when we sing, we throw out our line. When another adds his or her voice, that line becomes a rope, and when another joins in, that rope becomes a cable, and eventually a bridge is built. I can hardly wait to build that bridge in song!