Preparing Our Hearts…Hear! (2016)

Each week in December 2016, we’ll explore a way that we prepare our hearts for the coming of Christ into the world. For these stories and more, please download the December News for the Flock.

Dec 1: Taste| Dec. 8: See | Dec. 15: Hear | Dec. 22: Feel

Imagine gathering around majestically ornamented evergreens and imaginative nativity scenes. All your loved ones are there, and you are greeted with warm smiles and firm handshakes. At the piano, a friend draws the room together with familiar melodies. Everyone knows the words, and voices and instruments chime in, one by one. As you lift your own voice, you know in your heart that it is truly Christmas time. 

This is the Sounds of the Season, an annual free concert at Shepherd of the Valley. All of the choirs, handbells, bands and ensembles at SOTV will participate. There will be Christmas music for everyone, young and old alike, with beloved classics, new favorites, and songs you can’t help but sing along with. The big finale is a chance for everyone to sing the Hallelujah Chorus.

Many different holiday concerts have existed over the 35 years of our church.  Longtime members will remember coming to church on a December night to pack “Love Cans”, have dinner together and then enjoy a concert of music. Love Cans were coffee cans packed to the brim with sweet-smelling soaps, lotions, and other small thoughtful gifts brought in by members. The cans were then decorated and given to local families and individuals to lift their spirits during the holidays.

Earlier in the 90s, Christmas concerts featured special guests from around the community. Member and renowned jazz vocalist Paula Lammers was among the many artists who participated in those concerts. When Mark Ertl became the Director of Worship and Music in 1998, he invited all the many different music ensembles to participate – from the children’s choirs to handbells and brass ensembles and everything in between. As a result, the concert began to feel less like a performance, and more like a family get-together.

This year, open your heart—and your ears—to the Sounds of the Season and make this concert part of your holiday traditions. Join us Sunday, December 18 at 6:00 pm in the Sanctuary.

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