Music Enhances Grants Pass School, Church Programs

Anyone visiting the Grants Pass Adventist School this academic year has heard the difference. A vibrant music program has developed at over the past several months, to everyone’s delight. Brad McMurray was hired last summer to teach band and choir part-time. He has been offering bell choir as an elective, as well as individual music and vocal lessons. McMurray’s passion for Christ and music has been inspiring. His enthusiasm and sense of humor has touched every student at the school.

On Dec. 11, 2013, the school choir made a trip to the Rogue Valley Mall and performed a short program. The students entertained the crowd with Christmas music, both traditional and spiritual. How fun it was to watch busy holiday shoppers slow down to enjoy the music. It was touching to see the love of Jesus reflected in the students' faces.

The entire school participated in the Christmas program at the Grants Pass Church on Dec. 19. The bell choir performed “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.” Each class was showcased in music. The fourth- through eighth-grade choir was also featured.

McMurray, when introducing the school band, promised the crowd there may be some “squeaks and squawks.” Most of the band students had never picked up an instrument until three months prior. To hear them sit before an audience and play sections of music truly delighted the audience.

The school held its second Education Sabbath at the Grants Pass Church on Feb. 1. Again, there was a performance from the bell choir, which played the call to worship, "Holy, Holy, Holy." Phil Ermshar, principal, played a short video, "Top 10 Reasons to Attend the Grants Pass Seventh-day Adventist School."

There was special music not only from the kindergarten class but also the fourth- through eighth-grade choir. The school praise team also uplifted the audience and sang the praises of our Savior. Students Xavier Allred and August Wheeler led a brief sermonette, "Who Is My Neighbor?" Every word sung, every Scripture spoken during Education Sabbath, highlighted the year's theme of love.

In addition to being blessed with McMurray and his program, the school is blessed by the talents of Ryan and Lisa Hauck, now in the middle of their second year teaching in Grants Pass. Ryan Hauck’s energetic, uplifting guitar playing and his wife’s beautiful singing keep the kids engaged during chapel services at the school. Each and every Wednesday, the students come to school dressed just a little nicer than they would other days. They attend chapel services where not one is left seated once the music begins, which is followed with praise and prayer time. During chapel, there is also a brief sermon from a guest or the principal.

The school will be holding Walkabout Wednesdays the first and third Wednesday of each month, February through May. These are open house days where families (by appointment) can visit the school, attend chapel and have an opportunity to hear some of the beautiful music going on within the walls. For more information, please visit the school’s website.

March 10, 2014 / Oregon Conference