UTR Sings Hymns with the Greatest Generation
- Steven Koster
- Under the Radar
Music is powerful. We praise God with it, we dance to it, we celebrate key moments in life with it. We all have a ‘soundtrack’ to our lives—songs that still evoke deep memories of moments in our past. You might hear a song on the radio or a hymn in church in instantly recall a childhood memory.
Our Under the Radar program celebrates gourmet music, usually for a young adult audience. But recently, working with Nashville singers/songwriters Andrew Greer and Julie Lee, we held several performances in senior communities as part of the 10-day Chicagoland "Angel Band Hymns Tour."
Our host and producer of Under the Radar, David Trout, said, “While our core audience for UTR is ages 25-45, we know that hymns transcend time and generations. We knew this hymn-based tour would provide a great opportunity to bless an older generation. Not only did we see toes tapping and folks singing along, but it helped all of us--young and old alike--to reflect on the timeless truth in the songs." The musicians brought a spirit of worship that connected with the senior residents and inspired a contagious desire to glorify the God of all ages.
“It was a profoundly spiritual experience," commented Sharon Nelson, a volunteer at River Oaks Garden as she watched several dozen senior citizens sing along to the 1914 James C. Moore hymn, "Where We'll Never Grow Old." After the concert one resident, Pat, told Trout, "Like Julie said on stage, music will stay with you. And their music was wonderful.”
Barb Van Milligan, Coordinator of Life Enrichment at Holland Home, shared how the hymns were a living symbol of God's grace. "My mother-in-law has dementia. She can’t remember what she had for lunch. But as I watched her during the program she sang every word of every hymn--words that stay with us until the very end.”
May God be praised always, especially through songs of the ages!