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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Music spreads joy

New York youth use musicals to benefit orphans in Kenya

A little music goes a long way to bring joy to kids at Christ Lutheran Church, Woodstock, N.Y., and to children orphaned by HIV/AIDS in Hamisi, Kenya.

Christ Lutheran
became aware of Crossroads Springs Institution after a member visited Kenya in 2004. Since then the school and care center for orphans has been a beneficiary of the church's Mission Endowment Fund, which supports projects locally, nationally and globally.

Last year the Sunday school classes decided to help too. The 12 youth, ages 5 to 12, offered an adaptation of Godspell in the spring and Wish You Were Here at Christmastime. Between freewill offerings from the musicals and matching funds from Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, the youth raised more than $1,000 for Crossroads Springs.

Preperformance photo shoots are part
Preperformance photo shoots are part of Wish You Were Here, the troupe's Christmas production. The children "traveled" to the Holy Land and witnessed the birth of Christ firsthand.

The musicals are written or adapted by Barbara Pickhardt, the children's choral group director. She schedules rehearsals before Sunday school. Additional rehearsals are held prior to the productions, but there are no problems getting these busy kids to attend. "By then, children and parents are so inspired that they show up," said parishioner Eleanor Anderson.


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