First-Plymouth uses gigs to help pay off neighbor’s medical debt

LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) – Concerts offering spiritual experiences headline First Church-Plymouth’s community programs on Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

Good Friday April 15, 7 p.m., concert, Were you there? will take place in the Sanctuary of First-Plymouth and online at www.firstplymouth.org. The Holy Saturday concert, “Handel’s Messiah,” will take place on April 16 at 5:30 p.m., in the sanctuary and online.

On Good Friday, soloists Icy Simpson, Ariel Merivil and Marques Garrett will be featured with the First-Plymouth Chamber Choir (Schola cantorum) in heartbreaking renditions of Negro spirituals. This spiritually powerful music is sure to deepen our experience with the passion of Christ. Scriptures, prayers and pastoral reflections will offer a counterpoint to the musical expressions guiding our way to the Cross.

The Good Friday service will follow the seven last words of Christ on the cross. Each section will include a scripture and then a song or spoken reflection to further express the text. Black spiritual songs share biblical stories that demonstrate God’s faithfulness and human resilience in the face of hardship. These songs represent powerful testimonies of faith carried by a community that has endured deep suffering and yet kept hope through it all.

Voluntary donations will help First-Plymouth’s JustNeighbors initiative pay off a neighbor’s medical debt in Lincoln. Childcare provided.

On Holy Saturday, Handel’s Messiah will also feature the Schola Cantorum as well as soloists Simpson, Garrett and Matthew Clegg. The singers will be accompanied by strings, trumpets and timpani in excerpts from the irresistible Messiah, a beloved musical expression of the hope and joy that Easter brings.

First performed in 1742, Handel’s Messiah includes the iconic “Hallelujah Chorus,” perhaps the most recognized piece of choral music ever composed and one that continues to be performed frequently nearly 300 years later.

The Schola Cantorum Choir of First-Plymouth recently sang in Chicago, as the only church choir selected to perform at the American Choral Directors Association’s Midwest Regional Convention. Conductor Tom Trenney won second prize in the 2021 American Choral Conductors Award, and he will conduct two choral/orchestra performances at Carnegie Hall next season.

This Holy Saturday concert will take place in the Sanctuary of First-Plymouth and online at www.firstplymouth.org. Voluntary donations will help First-Plymouth’s JustNeighbors initiative pay off a neighbor’s medical debt in Lincoln. Childcare provided.

First-Plymouth Church is a progressive and inclusive congregational church dedicated to its mission of increasing love of God and neighbor. More information about the church, its programs and services is available at firstplymouth.org.

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