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Freedom Sings!


My excitement grew as I walked into my first in-person station rehearsal, which was held at Little Rock A.M.E. Zion Church and led by Minstrel Sid Oliver. My excitement continued to grow as we began learning a repertoire of music spanning times and genres. The atmosphere was charged with eagerness as vocalists embraced the assignment to worship in song. Additional stations, including a virtual option, were also equipped and energized! All about Zion, The A.M.E. Zion International Mass Choir was preparing to minister at the Board of Bishops and International Ministers and Lay Association meeting in Rock Hill, South Carolina.

In the Piedmont Leadership Training Institute (September 2023), Bishop Darryl B. Starnes challenged leaders in his Keynote Message: “We prove that we are thriving as a dynamic movement by what we are becoming.” Under the leadership of Dr. Lisa Moore (Director of Music Ministry), the A.M.E. Zion Church International Mass Choir began the process of becoming. When this mighty musical machine connected before the first worship assignment, the presence of God with the people was evident; the power of God through the music was apparent. A unified body mounted the choir stand and rendered, “All Hail The Power Of Jesus Name”... The command to praise was unmistakably established!

To say I enjoyed engaging in this experience would be a gross understatement! Dr. Moore strategically selected each piece - the goal: “To present an array of songs allowing attendees to find their worship voice within the music.” The anointing and humbleness of Dr. Moore and the team made learning the music a pleasure; they made singing the music a praise! The engulfing fire there inspired me for my local worship assignment. And I am not alone.

The musicians who served alongside Dr. Moore shared their feelings, and one of several recurring themes was the respect of the gifted for the gifted – the comradery of the different aspects that made up the whole. All the anointings unified, made the whole much stronger, and glorified God greater! Willingness, servanthood, excitement, communication, variety, and unification made this team a powerful replica of the 5-fold ministry model.

Vocalists who served had similar sentiments. The overarching feeling was JOY about having participated! Vocalists sang, but there was an overwhelming sadness when the end arrived. Sis. Sarita Garrett remarked, “It was an amazing experience... I love how everyone was able to come together from different areas and be on one accord to sing praises to God. The presence of God did not only meet us at every service but also dwelled with us during our rehearsals. I'm looking forward to singing with the Mass Choir again.”

People entered as attendees and left, having engaged as worshipers. My most favorite moment was the spontaneous worship provoked through the impromptu rendering of “Draw Me Nearer!” A unified Zion fervently called out for God!!! Zion’s International Mass Choir is becoming a mighty movement for God! This mighty movement sings of A Mighty Fortress and continues to become for General Conference 2024!

Zion’s International Mass Choir, Freedom, Sings, Dr. Lisa Moore, Music Ministry


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