September 24, 2010
The Singing Churchmen of Oklahoma, who are celebrating their 50th anniversary, will help OBU celebrate 100 years with a concert on Thursday, Sept. 30, at 7 p.m. in Potter Auditorium in Raley Chapel. The community is invited to attend the free performance.
"The Singing Churchmen have represented Oklahoma and Oklahoma Baptists around the world presenting the Gospel through music," said Dr. Paul Hammond, dean of the Warren M. Angell College of Fine Arts. "It is our pleasure to bring them to the OBU campus as part of the OBU Centennial Celebration."
The Singing Churchmen of Oklahoma was organized in 1960 by the Church Music Department of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma. Under the direction of Dr. Ken Gabrielse, worship and music specialist for the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, the choral group represents one of most successful male choral organizations in the Southern Baptist Convention. The Singing Churchmen of Oklahoma is comprised of more than 350 full-time, part-time, bi-vocational and volunteer ministers of music from across the state.
In addition to church and convention-related concerts, the Singing Churchmen have presented concerts throughout the United States and abroad including: the Gaither Praise Gatherings in Cincinnati, Ohio, and Indianapolis, Ind.; Medallion Concert Series in Minneapolis, Minn.; PraiSing I and II in Nashville, Tenn.; and the Baptist World Alliance in Tokyo. They have also participated in several mission endeavors, including trips to Spain on two occasions; Latvia, Estonia and Russia in 1993; and China in 1996, including concerts in Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Hong Kong.
In 2003, the Singing Churchmen of Oklahoma traveled to Australia to present concerts and lead training conferences in Sydney, Newcastle and Brisbane in the spring of 2003. They also raised more than $25,000 for church planting in New South Wales and Brisbane. The internationally known Sydney Opera House was a concert venue for this mission trip, as well as other prominent concert halls across the country.
In April 2009, the Singing Churchmen traveled to Armenia and Israel for a concert and mission tour where public concerts were attended by hundreds of people in each country who had no prior affiliation with any evangelical church.
The Churchmen have produced several recordings during their 50- year history, including "Foundations," a live joint concert with the Singing Churchwomen and the Oklahoma Baptist Symphony in May 2005. The most recent SCM recording is entitled "Come to Jesus."
The purpose of this unique group is to spread the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ through the vehicle of music.