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Gospel choir doubles in size, full of new faces, hope

By Casey Flowers
On September 14, 2010

The OU gospel choir has more than doubled in size since last year, with new faces at every meeting.

Sophomore Jocelyn Clardy said the new people bring new flavors that the gospel choir has never had before.

"None of the new members have every sung this type of music before, but when you hear us perform you would never know that," she said. "Our group is very diverse and I feel more groups on campus should follow suit."

Junior Brittany Fain is the student leader of the gospel choir and has many new plans and performances in store for the choir this year.

These include performing at several different churches and hosting a gospel choir workshop. She also has long term plans to keep the choir expanding.

"We plan on next year not only recruiting singers, but musicians as well. This year is a new year because we were under construction, so we are just hitting the ground running," she said. "Hopefully by my senior year we will have at least 20 students in the choir with a band as well."

Fain said the gospel choir is about more than just singing praise songs. The members of the choir sing out of love for God and want to praise him with their voices. It is a way to minister, as well as to strengthen their spiritual lives, she said.

"Singing to me sometimes strengthens ones relationship with God. If they had a relationship it will strengthen it, and if they didn't, I think it will establish it," she said.

Clardy said it is a powerful group who are very focused on what their purpose is and why they choose to be there and sing.

"Before every rehearsal, we clear our mind of everything that has happened in our day so that the music will be from the heart," she said. "We sing from the spirit and in that, must have everything in us focused on the Lord and the wonderfulness of Him. When we sing in gospel choir we are singing to the Lord and our words have meaning."

Each member of gospel choir is touched in a different way and has similar, yet individual goals.

"I always told myself that if I could make one person see Jesus while I'm singing then it's all worth it to me. I joined gospel choir because it's an opportunity for me to express his love for me and why I am thankful," freshman Justin Smallwood said.

"Being in this choir makes me feel like I'm at home. It means so much to me because I love to sing," Fain said. "I also get to show how I worship, and show what my culture does to praise God so this group means a lot to me."

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