Youth musicians minister in San Diego

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Territorial Youth Band and Chorus visit Sierra del Mar Division.

by Stephen Yalden –

The Territorial Youth Band performs at Seaport Village in San Diego. [Photo by Sophie Yalden]
The Salvation Army Western Territorial Youth Band (TYB) and Youth Chorus (TYC) recently visited California’s Sierra del Mar Division, specifically the San Diego Citadel and the El Cajon corps.

The band, led by Territorial Music Secretary Bandmaster Neil Smith, and the chorus, led by Northwest Divisional Music Director Matt Woods, presented a balanced program that catered to all tastes.

On Saturday afternoon, a large crowd gathered at the popular tourist spot, Seaport Village, to hear the groups perform. Group members distributed flyers, inviting onlookers to the evening concert at the San Diego Citadel Corps; this resulted in attendance of more than 200 people.

Youth chorus member Sarah Kalentermidis said, “I believe we were created to worship God. In TYC we do just that…. We encourage each other in our faith and testify God’s working in our lives through our fellowship and the songs.”

Fellow chorus member Katerina Bordoy said, “Music is one of the best ways to connect with someone and I’m glad we as young Salvationists have opportunities like this to help spread the gospel.”

At the evening concert, the band’s items included the march “Redcliffe,” “Dance Like David,” “In the Love of Jesus” and a piece by William Himes written in memory of Bandmaster James Anderson—recently promoted to Glory—called “This I Know,” which featured his first composition, “Jesus Loves Me.”

The chorus’s offerings included “Living Fire,” Praise to the Lord,” and “Onward”; the final song was a rendition of “Sit Down, You’re Rocking the Boat,” from the musical Guys and Dolls.

James Allen provided a piano solo.

After Territorial Youth Secretary Major Ivan Wild brought the devotional message, the band played their final piece, Dudley Bright’s “Paean,” and Corps Officer Major Gwyn Jones closed in prayer.

Band member Jennifer Crowell said, “The TYB has…enabled me to step up and become the confident young woman I am called to be in Christ. The many leaders that guide the TYB have shown me what it means to live a life that is pleasing to God.”

On Sunday morning, the Youth Chorus took their ministry to the El Cajon Corps, while the Youth Band returned to the San Diego Citadel Corps to participate in their morning service.

Chaperon Jon Tollerud commented on the ministry of these young people: “It is a joy to see our young people grow not only in musicianship but also in their walk with God. When I converse with them, I see Christ’s love reflecting in them. I am also impressed by their attitude of service when we engage in community activities such as our visit to Seaport Village. To see our kids sharing God’s love not just through music but also through evangelism promises a bright future for The Salvation Army.”

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