THE CHOIRS

          The Christian Church has always loved song. Music in the church is very important. The more spiritually powerful (lifskraftigare) a church is, the more powerfully she sings. May the church's song flourish! Every Christian ought to be a great singer to "God and the Lamb, who saved us with His blood". But even the song by the choir is of the highest importance. And the one, who does not understand or appreciate choir music is missing, truly, an important factor in the evangelizing of the world and the edification of the church.

Fred Rose Choir singing began here quite early. In the Presbyterian Church, choir singing was used sometimes when Brother Andr. Swanson was leading or directing the choir. But the one who founded the choir in Grand Rapids is the now homegone Fred Rose. He began to gather the singers and train them in the beginning of 1884, when the "missionhouse" was completed. Choir members were then only eight in number. Later the number increased to sixteen members. Brother Rose laid down a faithful work with the choir, never tired and overcame all hindrances. He was in the middle of the work he loved so much, when he was called home. it was at Christmas time, that he took sick 1899. It was a trying time for the choir and the church because two of the best singers and the leader has passed away in a little over one weeks time. Mr. Rose heard during his sickness, that the young, lovely Anna Wadell had gone home, when he said: "She has been allowed to move up to the higher choir." She sang alto and was the church's faithful organist. The other one, who died was Nels Lindberg, a very good bass singer. Rose and Lindberg were buried the same day at the same time. It was a very touching funeral service in the church that surely every attending person will never forget.

Those who moved on to sing in the "higher choir" and who so faithfully stood at their "post" down here, are waving to the present members of the choir and shouting: "Be faithful at your post, the reward is great to sing praises to God and the Lamb."

After Rose's death, the choir was led for some time by Pastor Nyren. After him, Ida Wolin was elected as choir leader and directed the choir for some time. She had then been organist since 1896 and had been singing in the choir for many years. She was also gifted with a good voice and was the soloist of the choir as long as she was a member thereof. She also sang solos often at the other meetings of the church and was well liked. Miss Wolin was also organist for the Sunday School for many years. She moved last spring to Seattle, Washington. The number of members in the choir is now 28. Of those, there is one, who has been along since the choir was started namely Fred Lundberg. The Lord will reward his faithfulness. The choir is now being led by the undersigned. Since 1902 there is now a children's choir or "juniorkoren" having 40 members. We also have a women's choir (damkor) with 17 voices. All of these choirs are led by the pastor.

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