Extensions of Faith choir to mark 10th anniversary

NEIGHBORS

November 28, 1999|By Christina Bittner | Christina Bittner,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

IN 1989, four friends from different churches in the Pumphrey community had a desire to sing gospel and spiritual music together. They sang in one another's churches, in schools and at banquets.

Others who heard their concerts decided to join. Now 44 voices strong, the Extensions of Faith Interdenominational Praise Choir will celebrate its 10th anniversary at 5 p.m. Dec. 5 at North County High School in a joint concert with the Wilmington Chester Mass Choir from Wilmington, Del.

Known for its high-energy performances, Extensions of Faith receives invitations to sing a year in advance. The choir has performed throughout the area, from Frederick to Annapolis. The holiday season is its busiest time, and the twice-a-month practice sessions become weekly.

Performances feature popular gospel pieces along with traditional spirituals and hymns.

Spokeswoman Ramocille Johnson said the choir aims to draw from the rich legacy of gospel music. "We will reshape and revise on the gospel style. We include music from the 1950s and '60s that may not be heard much now," she said.

Johnson said membership in the choir grew by word of mouth. "People heard us sing, we gathered a following and others wanted to join. Some people have changed over the years, but we have a core of very dedicated people that maintains the integrity of the choir. We are multidenominational; our members belong to 28 different churches."

They include people from all walks of life who are willing to make a commitment to the choir. "We have members who are corporate executives, police officers, housewives and teachers. They are dedicated not only to the choir, but also to their church and community. They have families and juggle a lot of things to be a part of the choir," Johnson said.

Drummer Walter Caldwell, bassist D'Andre White, Sean Williams on the congas and percussionist Venus Walker accompany the choir.

The group will begin work soon on its first CD. "We have to get the music prepared, shape it and decide what to sing and how to orchestrate it. There is an option to record in a studio or church, or at a live performance. We'll do a demo first, and then if it's good we'll do the CD," Johnson said.

Tickets for the anniversary concert are $20. Proceeds will support the Unity Day Ministry of St. John United Methodist Church and the Extensions of Faith Outreach Missions.

Information: St. John United Methodist, 410-636-2578.

Singers begin season

The Arundel Singers, a Brooklyn Park group formed 23 years ago as the Bicentennial Chorus, will kick off its fall concert season at 3 p.m. Dec. 5 at the Brooklyn Heights United Methodist Church, 110 Townsend Ave.

Admission is free, but donations will be accepted. Information: 410-789-3688.

Library's Family Place

The Brooklyn Branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library will begin a new session next month of its Family Place program, which promotes literacy and healthy child development.

At 10: 30 a.m. on Thursdays in December, participants will have a chance to meet one-on-one with specialists in child development, hearing and speech, movement, play and nutrition. Past speakers have included representatives from the Johns Hopkins Children's Center, Loyola College and Gymboree.

Parents and caregivers will have an opportunity to network with one another and learn about community programs beneficial to families with young children. Parents and caregivers for children ages 3 and younger are eligible to participate. Infants and siblings up to age 5 are also welcome.

The library is at 300 E. Patapsco Ave. Information or to register: 410-396-1120.

The gift of bricks

Looking for a unique holiday gift for a former Brooklyn Park High School student?

The school's alumni association is selling original bricks from the school building, circa 1954 -- each with the painted letters BPHS -- for $10.

Bricks can also be personalized with the student's name and year of graduation for $20.

The alumni association and Chesapeake Center for the Creative Arts will share the proceeds.

To ensure delivery by Christmas, orders should be received by Dec. 5. To order or for more information: 410-636-3269 or 410-789-7214.

Dinner with Santa

Members of Cub Scout Pack 188 invite everyone to a spaghetti dinner with Santa from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday at Resurrection Lutheran Church, 601 Hammonds Lane.

Tickets are $3 for children ages 4 to 12, and $5 for adults. Those age 3 and younger will be admitted free. Children will have the opportunity to make crafts and play games, as well as tell Santa their Christmas dreams and have pictures taken with him.

Information: Cubmaster Kay Zogg, 410-636-6516.

Craft bazaar

English Counsel Christian Church, 2733 Daisy Ave. in Baltimore Highlands, will hold its 20th annual Holiday Craft Bazaar from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

Tables may be rented for $8. Breakfast and lunch will be sold. For more information or to rent a table: 410-247-7990.

Light Night

Light Night, the weekly children's ministry of the Townsend Avenue Baptist Church, will begin its second trimester at 7 p.m. Wednesday.

Each session includes a 40-minute worship-and-lesson period, then time for club activities including Bible memory, stories, music, indoor sports, model building, games and crafts.

Children from kindergarten to seventh grade are welcome. A parent or guardian must register the child.

The church is at 4200 Townsend Ave. in Brooklyn. For information or to register a child: 410-355-0347.

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