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AUGUST 17, 2013

Press Photo

"Celebration of Praise" coordinated by BCF students and faculty.

"Celebration of Praise" originally started out as a simple idea of combining the two choirs led by The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) music majors Gary Medlock and Daniel McNeill. The idea grew and transformed into a mass choir from churches all around the area singing praises together and glorifying God. This idea that eventually became known as "Celebration of Praise" and was held on August 26, 2012 at Shiloh Baptist Church in Chipley, Fla., involved six area church choirs united together to create a spectacular evening of worship. The evening of praise through music was so meaningful and powerful that everyone involved desired for it to become an annual event.

On August 11, 2013 at Shiloh Baptist Church in Chipley, Fla., nine area church choirs united together to perform the second annual "Celebration of Praise." Participants included BCF student Gary Medlock of Northside Baptist Church in Ponce De Leon, Fla., BCF student Lucas Lott of Damascus Baptist Church in Graceville, Fla., BCF student Shawn Smith of Holmes Creek Baptist Church of Chipley, Fla., BCF graduate Ellis Wimberly and Dan Colletti of First Baptist Church in Chipley, Fla., BCF Music and Worship Division Chair Bill Davis of First Baptist Church in Geneva, Al., Joey Thomas of Bethlehem Baptist Church of Bonifay, Fla., David Lauen of First Baptist Church of Bonifay, Fla., and BCF graduate Daniel McNeill of Shiloh Baptist Church in Chipley, Fla.

In addition to the 7 music directors, the combined choir and orchestra of over 200 people included BCF students, faculty, and staff members performing musical arrangements of "I Shall Wear a Crown, 10,000 Reasons, I'll Take the Old Highway, Untitled Hymn, and Thou, Oh Lord." Each of the music directors had a song to direct and joined together to sing "I Then Shall Live" with Mark Morris of Morningside Baptist Church as a special guest. BCF sophomore Jessica Doyle was featured as a soloist in "My Help (Cometh from the Lord)," and Rachel Bruner presented "If My People Will Pray" on the piano. The evening also included a powerful time of congregational singing and worship through music as over 1000 voices filled the room.

"When different churches come together in an event like this and worship alongside each other, it shows a wonderful picture of what it means to be unified in Christ," stated Medlock. "I look forward to seeing what 'Celebration of Praise' turns into in the years to come and to 'Sing the glory of His name and make His praise glorious' once again."