It’s rehearsal time for the York College Concert Choir. Students head into Gurganus, dropping their backpacks on the desks and stage in the multipurpose room. Hugs and high fives are shared as the singers gather on the risers, shuffling through their sheet music. Then conversations stop, there’s a moment of stillness, a pitch is given, and voices are united as rehearsal begins with the fall of Dr. Roush’s baton.
More than just music is made on those risers, says Rachel (Nowlin) James. Hearts are touched, friendships begun, memories are forged, and above all, God is glorified.
The choir has an impact on thousands of audience members each year, as they bring the good news in song to churches in Nebraska and beyond. But perhaps the deeper impact is on the choir members themselves. Many former members agree that their time on the risers was one of the most formative experiences of their lives.
That was certainly the case for James. “Choir was the heart of my York College days,” she says. The music and the friends she made have had a lasting impact on her. That’s why she and her husband Richard ’97 have pledged a matching gift for the choral rehearsal hall in the soon-to-be constructed performing arts center.
“Richard and I are at a place in life where we can do something special and challenge everyone else who stood on the risers to help YC build a new performing arts center,” says Rachel, who encourages other former choir members to join in and give. The James’s gift will match other gifts for the performing arts center dollar for dollar up to $100,000.
This effort is not much different from choir itself, says Rachel. “Every person, every part, blends whatever we can give with everyone else’s gift to create something wonderful.”
Rachel says her gift is intended to honor the legacy of Dr. Roush, who has built the Concert Choir program over the past 29 years at York College. His musicianship and mentoring has had an impact on the lives of hundreds of choir members and thousands of audience members in his nearly three decades of service. “Though music had been a part of my life before college, Dr. Roush encouraged me to consider how our repertoire could be more than just musically appealing. The art was also praise and worship,” says Rachel.
The gift will also honor the lives of Richard’s grandparents, Wayne and Eunice Moody. Longtime supporters of York College and of the fine arts, the Moodys encouraged many students to attend YC, including their grandson. Mr. Moody also served on the YC Board of Trustees and was committed to maintaining a Christian College in the North Central states. The choral rehearsal hall in the new performing arts center will bear the Moody name.
Take advantage of this matching gift opportunity and make a gift for the performing arts center today!
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