Area churches preparing quot;God For Usquot;

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 15, 2000

Tim Murfin, minister of music at First Baptist Church and organizer of the "God For Us" musical, gives the more than 70-member choir instructions on how to make the program a success.

Photo by Alicia Weldon

By Alicia Weldon

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Staff Writer

Area churches have been practicing to show that God really is for us.

Local choirs are preparing for a worship experience entitled "God For Us," to be shown at the Ritz Theatre on Saturday, July 15 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, July 16 at 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tickets are free, but the churches ask that anyone interested call 382-5892, 382-5872 or 382-6224 to get tickets ahead of time due to limited seating.

The 75-voice choir will perform the musical celebration, featuring music of praise and testimonies from those participating in the event. The same show will be performed at each of the times to allow many people in the community to come and enjoy the show.

Tim Murfin, minister of music at First Baptist Church of Greenville and organizer of the event, said "God For Us" is a program that has been put on by many churches in the country.

"I've been to one in a Birmingham church, which gave me the idea," Murfin said. "It just made me say, This is what we need in Greenville'."

He added that the five churches involved have been practicing at the churches since February, adding to the experience they gained by practicing at the Ritz Theatre last Tuesday through Thursday nights.

"We felt we needed something here in Greenville as a community to bring us together," Murfin said. "There have been musicals done with the churches in the past but not in a long time. Hopefully it will be a stepping stone for future things among the churches."

He said the music featured in the program helps bring those in attendance into an attitude of worship, bringing with it the realization that God is for you.

Each of the practices begin with a time of prayer and devotion with those of all ages participating in the event, helping them to get in tune with the real reason for doing the program for the public. A prayer list was made for the choir, pairing each person off with another, so they can pray for the other during the program.

"I don't want this to be just a performance or time to show off," Murfin said. "It's a unified thing among the churches coming together singing for the Lord, not just about individual people."

The individuals working hard to prepare for the event agree with Murfin's views of the program.

Renee Powell, a member of First Baptist Church, said it is wonderful to see something they have worked on for a long time come together in the end.

"It's very spiritually uplifting and wonderful for the community to come together like this," Powell said. "I enjoy being a part of it."

Dennis Scofield, a First Methodist Church choir member, said if at least one life is touched by the program, then it is all worth the time and effort.

"Several times during the practice as my voice was giving out, I felt a surge of energy," Scofield said. "It was like the Lord was helping me become stronger. Since the biggest problem all the churches face is coming together for the same thing, this program has allowed us all to come together in worship and praise."