Beginning in 1976 when Royce Dowell and Sam Prestidge drove to El Paso to listen to a skinny teenager with long hair sing tenor, and many years later having sponsored, directed the band five times, driven trucks, and sending two of my children, Baptist All-State has been a vital, energetic force in my life and countless others. My early experiences ultimately shaped and propelled me to a life in Christian Higher Education that has allowed me the opportunity to use music as a ministry tool in both churches and schools. Now 32 years later, as I watch my youngest son Jordan who orchestrated “Heart for the Nations,” worship, perform, and “dive deeper” into the Word and the teachings of Christ, and see him making friends from all over the world at the Baptist World Alliance Youth Conference in Leipzig, Germany, I am humbled and honored to be a part of this God-given institution called Baptist All-State Choir and Band.
Here I sit amidst over 5,000 students and adults excited once again about worshiping God and building our loving relationship with Him that will extend to all our activities to which we apply ourselves. It is our hope and prayer that we will use this marvelous opportunity to be a witness and a servant for Him not only in Leipzig, Germany but throughout the world as well as our hometowns in particular. Perhaps this microcosmic event will become a mega manifestation of Christian action that will be contagious and infectious to thousands or millions.
So we use our God-given gift of music to express our love, our appreciation, our joy, and our faith in this beautiful country that has opened its doors to the Baptist World Alliance. Performing in churches, hearing great music, seeing the people, eating the food, and living the German life all add up to an experience that will never be forgotten by our students. We are charmed by the culture, charged by the spirit, and challenged by God to continue to dive deeper in our relationships, our knowledge, and our love.
Today and tomorrow promise to be even better. Thanks for your prayers and your support of Baptist All-State 2008 as we continue to make music and be witnesses in Leipzig, Germany.”
Robert Tucker, Sponsor
Howard Payne University