In continuation of Maranatha Baptist University’s 50th year celebrations, its three choirs combined to open Fall Festival singing the traditional melody and moving harmonies of Dan Forrest’s arrangement of “How Firm a Foundation.” And while 140 individual voices sang, they moved as one voice in the rise and fall of the music, communicating this victorious message:
“The soul that on Jesus hath leaned for repose
I will not, I will not desert to his foes;
That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I’ll never, no never, no never forsake.”
Fall Festival 2017
Fall Festival focused on each decade of Maranatha since the start leading up to the present day. The beginning of the program displayed the firm foundation of Maranatha and ended with an eye toward the future.
The Heritage Singers proclaimed in song, “God Leads His Dear Children Along,” transitioning the focus of the program from how the Lord orchestrated MBU’s beginnings, to how He continued to lead Maranatha forward through eras of war, economic downturn, and political uncertainty.
The program was a blend of music, pictorial displays, alumni testimonials, and reader’s theatre. The story of Maranatha was told in an engaging way by three MBU students: Elizabeth Conrad, Amelia Johnson and DeVante Neal. The narrators left the audience laughing and, at other times, growing teary-eyed over the powerful message of God’s provision and direction.
Fall Festival Program
Each of the songs in the program – “Victory in Jesus,” “Great is Thy Faithfulness,” and “Be Thou My Vision” – focused on praising God for what He had or is accomplishing in and through Maranatha.
Performers of the musical numbers included Dr. David Ledgerwood on piano; the combined choirs of Chorale, Madrigal, and Chamber; Orchestra; Heritage Singers; and the Handbell Choir accompanying the Ladies Chorus in “Unless the Lord Builds the House,” written and conducted by Carol Ruffin.
To conclude the evening, Maranatha alumni left their seats and joined the choirs in singing the University’s hymn, “To the Praise of His Glory.” The evening finished with an emphasis of “Advancing ‘til He Comes.”
Even though Maranatha has been in existence for 50 years, to paraphrase a line from the program, “it’s just getting started.”
The complete recording of Fall Festival is available for viewing — click here.