Grande Ronde Community Church hosts musical missionaries
Celebrant Singers, an internationally-known Christian music group, will appear in concert Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Grande Ronde Community Church, 410 Fir St., in La Grande.
Admission is free, but a freewill offering will be received for their ministry.
Since 1977, Celebrant Singers have sung to more than six million people in live concerts and to countless more via radio and television.
From a command performance for Pope John Paul II to the halls of the Pentagon, from Iran and Cuba to war-torn Northern Ireland, from the glitz and glamour of Monte Carlo to the streets of Calcutta, the California-based musical missionaries have crisscrossed the globe with their message of music.
They have performed with multiple troupes of ten singers, live orchestra, lights and sound, presenting thousands of concerts featuring their signature close, energetic vocal harmonies in an eclectic blend of contemporary, liturgical, gospel and praise and worship music.
Each concert is seasoned with international testimonies and finished off with a time of personal prayer ministry.
Celebrant Singers is interdenominational, ecumenical and international.
Group members are dedicated and talented young adults representing many major Christian traditions and hail from all parts of the United States, Canada and several other countries. Sharing their faith and their lives with others is job No. 1 for Celebrant Singers, eclipsing even their concerts.
While most contemporary Christian music groups have a largely Protestant audience, Celebrant Singers also have a widespread ministry among Roman Catholics.
Since their inception they’ve sung in more than 5,000 Catholic parishes in North America alone and countless thousands more overseas. They’ve enjoyed multiple private audiences with Pope John Paul II and provided music for the late Mother Teresa’s Nobel Peace Prize reception.
Group founder, California native Jon Stemkoski is the creative, driving force behind Celebrant Singers. He’s written dozens of songs, produced 13 recordings, conducted and preached the gospel in all fifty states and 93 countries thus far in his 30-year career.
Stemkoski started the group with $150 in his pocket after receiving the inspiration in Poland in 1975. The first team began ministering through music and prayer in 1977.
Immediately following their concert, Celebrant Singers will hold auditions for future ministry teams. There’s even a plan to launch a brand new group for the “over 40 crowd” next year. The new group will be called Reprise! This group will specialize in short term, 21-day outreaches in the U. S. and overseas.
Stemkoski says, “Hundred’s of excellent and dedicated musicians over 40 approach me at Celebrant Singers concerts every year saying, ‘What’ve you got for us?’ So we’re responding.
“We’re looking for vocalists, brass, woodwinds, strings, keyboardists, rhythm players, technicians, bus drivers and interpreters for the hearing impaired, for Celebrant Singers and our newest venture, Reprise!”
There are two summer teams with ministry itineraries which cover a 10-week period in June, July and August.
The organization is prayerfully considering developing teams of international Celebrant Singers in France, Latin America and India.
The organization is not financed by any corporation or religious denomination. The annual budget is raised through donations, support raised by individual teams members, offerings at services in North America and through the sale of CDs, cassettes and other products.