Sun. Jan 23rd, 2022

I recall four years ago, in 2009, a feeling that was indescribable as I entered the rehearsal of the WCU Gospel Choir for the first time. It was a bit overwhelming, quite unusual, but in retrospect, simply warm and loving. The consuming harmony, the flow of unity, and the swarming love of God captured me as I stood in the face of strangers feeling like I was their family. Furthermore, the scary feelings of the transition into my first year of college, the course expectations and assignments, seemed to calm when I entered this small room.
Years passed and I grew into a family of perfect strangers, who in their own respective way, cultivated me into a more responsible and better student. I grew into a lover of people, an expressionist, sharing, gentle, patient individual. Though not overnight, I experienced complete transformation.
Every rehearsal was a relief, every person was a bundle of joy, every note was heartfelt (even those that were off key). And slowly, but surely I began to learn the importance of a college life. A life not restricted to academics but also personal growth, and maybe even equally, the freedom to establish a community, to network, to express, and to enjoy.
I am a senior now, and I continue to represent the Gospel Choir, serving on the executive board, and contributing ideas to promote our organization. In all ways, we still acknowledge God, and therefore accept all that wish to come; people of all races, sizes, and walks of life are welcome. We have a place for everyone, whether to dance, mime, sing, play an instrument, plan events, capture photos, organize our web database, conduct socials, advertise and advise, record minutes, manage our account, participate in community service, the opportunities are endless. And most importantly there are NO AUDITIONS.
We take pride in participating in events such as, the WCU Homecoming, Martin Luther King Annual Celebration, AIDS Walk, Kwanza Celebration, Banana Day, countless programs sponsored by SGA, Relay For Life, Freshmen move- in , and of course our two featured concerts: Joy Night (Fall Semester) and Year End Gospel Explosion (Spring Semester). We have collaborated with organizations such as: The Social Work Club, The Wellness Center, The Black Student Union, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, Sykes After Dark, etc. But we look forward to also collaborating with other diverse organizations on campus to promote love and unity.
Through love, we glue together the pieces of diversity and accomplish the impossible, the unexpected. Love motivates us in our careers, in our families, in our friendships in our organizations and in our studies. It provides meaning, even through the challenges. And because of love, I joined the West Chester University Gospel Choir and have not turned back since. I guarantee that if you had just one moment to experience the love of God like I did, at the WCU Gospel Choir Rehearsal (Thursday’s at 7:30 p.m. in Swope 320), it would change your life forever too.
Kristen Martin is a fourth-year student majoring in religious studies and English writing with a minor in theatre. She can be reached at KM726264@wcupa.edu.
 

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