Saturday, June 27, 2009

Tour 2009 - Day 8

Day 8 – 2009 DUMC Summer Youth Tour

It seems we’ve just made new friends and the time has come too soon to bid them farewell. Londonderry was so good to us. The great news was that after a night of thunderstorms, the morning brought blue skies and sunshine – perfect for a day at Canobie Lake, a charming amusement park in Salem, NH. We lathered with sunscreen and fanned out to ride the rides and enjoy the water park. The Tall Friends (chaperones) ventured to the carousel and bumper cars (woo hoo), while the kids piled onto the antique cars and rode The Corkscrew. One of the highlights was an antique 1939 wooden roller coaster called The Yankee Cannonball. We feasted on ice cream sundaes named “When the Fat Lady Sings”, “The Wicked Honkytonk” and “Fat Man on a Dirty Couch”, as well as the usual Dippin’ Dots, cheeseburgers and caramel apples. Our visit to the park culminated with a wild water ride on The Boston Tea Party and as Walt, Catherine and Nick got a surprising spectator splash, the kids burst into song: “We are riding in the light of God, we are riding in the light of God . . . We are soaking in the light of God, we are soaking in the light of God.” There are many ways to praise our Lord, and don’t you love the spontaneous joy they just can’t contain? As the clouds rolled in and the rain began to fall, we were back on the bus and on our way to Westborough, MA. This was our final formal concert, performed at Westborough UMC, where the Rev. John Wesley Taylor presides in the pulpit and Brother Al presides in the kitchen. We were treated to a marvelous Caribbean meal that kept them coming back for more. Though we love our spaghetti dinners, this was quite a treat! The days have been long, the voices are becoming strained, there are the occasional snippy moments (and that’s just the Tall People!). But when the black dresses, ties and game faces go on, our youth sing from their hearts and touch lives in ways they cannot imagine. A comment tonight reflects what we’ve heard in every venue. A woman told us how she and her husband debated about whether or not to come, as he is in poor health and she did not think he was up to it. He told her he somehow felt he really needed to come. By intermission they both felt their souls had been restored . . . she believed God had worked through our choir and orchestra to lift them up. They, and many others, left with smiles on their faces. These concerts are more than just young people making beautiful music. They are truly witnessing their faith and fulfilling the purpose of this MISSION tour. It is almost 11:00, we have just pulled into the Hyatt, and - go figure - the kids have gotten their second wind. We’re scheduled for lights out at 11:15. We’ll just hope for the best!

God Bless !
Jackie Perry

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