Corban events encourage the faith community
March 5, 2010
Corban sponsored two community events recently that purposed to strengthen participants’ faith in God. The first was Hymn Festival 2010, a special worship service presented by the Music Department on February 25–26 at First Presbyterian Church in Salem. The second was the 10th annual Woman to Woman Conference, which the Student Life Department hosted on campus on February 27.
Due to its popularity last year, a second performance was added to the College’s annual hymn-sing this year. In the grand setting of First Presbyterian Church of Salem, where the architecture aids both visual and acoustic aesthetics, the symphonic orchestra, piano and Moller pipe organ led more than 1,100 worshippers in two services in affirming their faith in God.
Chair of the Music Department Dan Shuholm said, “Our department’s goal for the Hymn Fest this year originated out of asking ourselves, ‘What are ways we can offer encouragement to the Salem community?’”
Their theme, “This Is Faith,” rose as their response. The program emphasized God’s faithfulness in the midst of economic difficulties and trying times.
Musical selections included such favorites as “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God” and “How Firm a Foundation.” The arrangements of John T. Bartsch Jr. lent to a well-received presentation of beloved hymns alongside more recent compositions. The medley of the hymn “How Great Thou Art” with contemporary chorus “How Great Is Our God,” by Chris Tomlin, Jesse Reeves, and Ed Cash, was one example.
Other highlights included a hymn story for the anthem, “Like a River Glorious,” shared by Virginia Cross, D.M.A., and Scripture verses, read by Professors Jim Hills and Tamara McGinnis. Soloist Don Cheney contributed to the ensembles’ performance of the theme song, which was written by local Dave Schmidt. Its lyrics state, “So strengthened by these stories of old, I’ll keep my eyes on the One who sits beside God’s throne.”
Shuholm said, “I felt people were really connecting with what we were trying to do, which was to focus on the Lord.”
The Woman to Woman conference was another place individuals came to be strengthened in faith. This one-day retreat for ladies of the Mid-Willamette Valley included two keynote addresses by speaker and teacher Susan Garlinger. It also included three breakout sessions of choice, geared to the needs and interests of women, as well as a catered luncheon.
“We received good feedback. The pace of the day was well-liked, and it was good content. I value hearing from other women about how God has been speaking to them,” said the Vice President for Student Life and Chair of the Woman to Woman Committee these last 10 years, Nancy Hedberg.
The original idea behind Woman to Woman, said Hedberg, was to provide a spiritual growth opportunity for the women students. Each year, student government helps underwrite the cost of the conference so 50 students may attend for free.
Similar to the relevance of the Hymn Festival, one of the most well-attended breakout sessions at the 2010 conference was the presentation by Julie Bernard titled, “When Life Throws You a Curve.”
Next year’s Woman to Woman speaker is author Robin Jones Gunn, winner of three Christy awards for excellence in fiction, a Gold Medallion finalist, and a Mt. Hermon Pacesetter and Writer of the Year. Hedberg said, “She spoke at our 2004 conference, and we are very excited to have her back.”
For more information on the 2011 keynote speaker, go to www.robingunn.com.
By Jenny Hirschfelder, Staff Writer, Office of Marketing & Communications
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