Musicians mix music, ministries

The soulful sounds of gospel music filled the air in the First United Methodist Church of Baldwin City during Baker University's second annual Gospel Choir Extravaganza Saturday afternoon.

Junior Ray Davis, who directs the choir, said the Mungano-sponsored event showcased not only Baker's own gospel choir, but also different gospel groups from the area. The event also included some poetry and praise dancing.

"It's just a couple of groups coming together and singing and worshiping," Davis said.

Freshman Di-tu Dissassa said groups came from the University of Kansas, MidAmerica Nazarene University and a few local churches.

Sophomore Lauren Cooper said Baker's gospel choir performed three songs, including one performed with the other groups.

"The songs that we sing are really simple." Cooper said. "Anyone can participate."

Dissassa and Cooper also sang with junior Allison Williams and sophomore Bailey Boehm as part of a group called BE MANIFEST.

"We just wanted to uplift the name of the Lord through songs," Dissassa said.

Davis said Mungano decided to hold the event last year as a part of Black History Month. He wanted to get involved because of his musical background, especially in his church, where he has been performing musically for more than 15 years.

"I just wanted to bring something different to the campus, and I know music is something that can bring people of different races and ethnic backgrounds together," Davis said.

Davis said between 150 and 200 people were in attendance, which was more than he expected.

Baker's gospel choir, which consists of about 16 members, usually meets at 9 p.m. Thursdays in the Clarice L. Osborne Memorial Chapel.

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