Sunday has almost always been my favorite day of the week. I say “almost” because there were about three years in my life that I didn’t play the organ for church on Sunday.
During those three years, I was away at college and skipped attending church on Sundays. But as time went on, I began to yearn for that Sunday morning “pick me up” with God that started my week out right – and I missed playing the organ at church.
As a piano major at UN-L, I was keeping busy practicing four hours a day and preparing for recitals, so it wasn’t as though I was completely away from a keyboard – but I missed serving at a church.
One day out of the blue, a friend of mine (a voice major at UN-L) who was the choir director at Grace UMC in Lincoln told me that the church was looking for a pianist for Sunday morning worship. The sanctuary organ had been ruined in a tragic church fire and plans were being made to build a new organ (Gene Bediant Organ Company of Lincoln, NE) – but that could take some time. I told my friend I was interested in doing this because I knew it would be fun working with her and the choir – and I knew that eventually the organ would be completed and I could go back to being a church organist. God definitely had a hand in my decision, and I have been playing the organ for church somewhere ever since that time!
Fast forward – Sunday is still my favorite day of the week. Yes, what I do on Sunday requires a lot of work and planning – selecting appropriate hymns, solos, organ, brass and other instrumental works for the liturgical year, registering and rehearsing on our magnificent pipe organ, and working with my amazing colleagues weekly on the Worship Planning Team. But I tell you, the work is worth the effort when on Sunday morning we can glorify God together through music and the spoken word.
Even now during this uncertain time with social distancing, quarantine, face masks, and the unknown future, FUMCFW is exceedingly fortunate to have in place a system that allows us to continue to worship every single Sunday. The amazing team of Melinda Smoot, Director of Communications, along with Richard McQuillar, Emily McDermott, Austin Patton, Paul Hughes, Hans Grim and Lisa Waschka is the reason we are able to bring you worship in the Sanctuary, The Gathering, Disciple Church, and eleven:eleven – either with pre-recorded or live-stream access.
In the weeks ahead, our wonderful Choral Union under the direction of Robert Stovall will be presenting a “virtual choir” arrangement of “Come, Thou Fount.” Dace Sultanov, cellist and I will collaborate to bring you some beautiful cello/piano classical music that hopefully you will enjoy hearing. Hans Grim will continue to bring you some incredible songs that he has pre-recorded. And, we will be able to do this with the help of our Communications team.
Our hats are off to you all, and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all you’re doing to Love God, Serve People, and Transform Lives.
Organist and Associate Director of Music & Worship Arts