Territorial Musicians Minister in North, South Carolina

By: Ruthanna Corbitt

From the beautiful North Carolina Mountains of Asheville to the rich plains of South Carolina, the combined forces of the Territorial Band, Songsters and Creative Arts Ensemble gathered in the North and South Carolina Division to share the gospel of Jesus March 1-5.

Receiving a warm welcome by the Asheville, North Carolina, Corps family, under the leadership of Majors Mark and Mary Satterlee, the groups began preparation on Thursday.  Because they meet only a few times a year, the groups enjoyed the fellowship and fine-tuning of program content. Spiritual preparation began immediately with specific time set aside for prayer.

The groups joined local Salvationists and members of Asheville’s Central United Methodist Church for a Concert of Praise on Friday. The territorial band, under the leadership of Bandmaster Nick Simmons-Smith, territorial music secretary, opened with “Make His Praise Glorious.” Territorial Songster Leader Dr. Beatrice Holz skillfully conducted the songsters in challenging repertoire including “Pilgrim’s Hymn,”  “A Song of Thanksgiving,” and “An Offering.” The Territorial Creative Arts Ensemble, led by Territorial Creative Arts Director Bethany Farrell, enhanced worship with dance, costume, and dramatic Scripture readings, including the presentation of Psalm 139, “Oh, Lord, you have searched me. You know me!”

En route to Winston-Salem Saturday, the groups stopped for lunch in Hickory, North Carolina, hosted by Captains Tim and Bethany Delaney.  They were welcomed to Winston-Salem by Majors Stan and Deborah Colbert of the area command. The evening concert at the First Presbyterian Church offered a wonderful opportunity for the Salvation Army to share its mission and faith with members of the local community.

The highlight of the weekend program was certainly “The Dream Isaiah Saw,” a visually and musically dramatic presentation written in memory of people who lost their lives on Sept. 11, 2001, which featured all three groups.

The culmination of the ministry weekend was Sunday morning worship.  One songster member stated, “We enjoy all of our concerts, but we always look forward to Sunday worship!”

The individual groups went separate ways to offer support to more NSC corps. The creative arts team shared its ministry with the Charlotte Temple Corps. In place of a traditional message, the team performed its full-length show, “Story Worth Living.” The territorial songsters worshiped with the Greenville, South Carolina, Kroc Corps Community Center, where Major Pete Costas shared God’s Word on the theme “With His life, He bought you!”  A capacity crowd at the Raleigh, North Carolina, Corps welcomed the territorial band in worship and praise to the Lord. Local Bandmaster Henri Kissaska conducted the band in the march “Celebration”  to conclude the weekend of ministry.