This was the theme for the weekend when Chatham Songsters, under the leadership of Carolynn Woodman, visited Stowmarket Corps last weekend.
The Songsters were made to feel very welcome when, after a short rehearsal to become accustomed to the local acoustics, a superb buffet tea was provided which was also enjoyed by Stowmarket Songsters and those who were to be the billet hosts for the weekend. Friendships were therefore formed even before the serious singing began.
The Saturday concert dwelt on the theme of ‘Hope; a light in the darkness’ and began with ‘One Voice’, a number featured by Barry Manilow in the 1970s. Other Songster contributions were ‘Carry the light’, ‘Godspell Medley’, ‘Eatnemen Vuelie’, ‘Love shine a light’, ‘Keep the flame alive’, ‘Why I love Jesus’ and ‘Shine on us’.
Solo items were contributed by Martin Davis (Vocal – Befriended), Adrian Horwood (Euphonium – Travelling along) and Ruth Hardy (Elocution – When I became a Christian). The Brass Group presented ‘Toward the victory’ and the Timbrels ‘Victory’. Heather Scott brought scripture and a thought.
The Sunday morning meeting, led by Tim Scott, took the theme ‘Hope; for the present’. The Songsters opened with ‘God loves you’ and also contributed ‘Give me Jesus’, ‘When we cannot see our way’ and ‘In Christ alone’ and using ‘Look at Jesus’ as a benediction. The congregation joined in two songs, God’s love to me is wonderful’ and ‘Trust and obey’. Scripture chosen was from Romans 8:18-28 and testimonies were given by Kevin Abbott and Emma Davis. In his talk Tim asked the question ‘Is hope enough’, comparing it with the greater dimension ‘faith’.
‘Hope; for the future’ was the theme for the final meeting of the weekend which the Songsters began with ‘Our God’ and ‘Beautiful Christ’. ‘O that will be glory’, ‘Grace’, ‘Jesus will still be there’ and ‘I’m in hid hands’ were further inclusions from the Songsters who concluded, as on Saturday evening, with ‘Shine on us’. The Male Voices brought ‘We’re on our way to heaven – but’ and the Ladies ‘Fairest of ten thousand’. Stowmarket Band and Songsters each contributed an item and the united Songsters of both corps squeezed onto the platform to bring ‘Midnight Cry’.
Paul and Ruth Woodhouse spoke about Chatham Tweenagers‘ Matumaini Project and Charlie Gouyet testified. A Piano Trio (one keyboard) was performed by Emma and Lisa Davis together with the Songsters’ accompanist Carole Horwood (Liberty).
This was a weekend full of joy, fellowship and challenge and we give the glory to God.