Students ‘ring’ in the holiday season at Annual Festival of Carols

The Beacon School trio was joined by fellow students from schools throughout the island, as the official kick-off to the holiday season with their performances at the Annual Festival of Carols hosted by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology under the theme, “Come let us worship the King.” The event was held at Community at Heart Tabernacle, Church of God of Prophecy on Tuesday, December 5. (Photo: Sharell Lockhart)

Praises of glory and honor unto the King of kings, Christ the Lord, rang out in the sanctuary of Community at Heart Tabernacle, Church of God of Prophecy on Tuesday, December 5, 2017, as the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology hosted its Annual Festival of Carols under the theme, “Come let us worship the King.”

Masterfully infusing Bahamian flare into each of the Christmas carol performances, students representing both public and private schools across Grand Bahama got everyone into the spirit of the holiday season by reminding all that Jesus Christ is the ultimate gift, selflessly given by God to redeem mankind.

Gaylene Pinder, Senior Education Officer smiled sweetly as she listened to the angelic voices of the Beacon School Trio singing ‘Mary did you know?’ meanwhile Ivan Butler, West Grand Bahama, Bimini and the Cays District Superintendent jigged to a stirring rendition of the ‘Little Drummer Boy’ by Bartlett Hill Primary School and Yvonne Ward, East Grand Bahama and the Cays District Superintendent’s eyes twinkled with reverent hope, as Sister Mary Patricia Russell Junior High School bellers played Christmas ‘Hand Bells’.

On hand at the Festival of Carols were Bishop George and Minister Damaris Thompson, who were commended for their faithful support of the annual event, Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Incorporated GB Chapter executive board member Elcina Duncombe, Grand Bahama Youth Choir (GBYC) executive director Kevin Tomlinson along with numerous education officials and parents, who were left awestruck by the sheer talent of their children.

According to District Superintendent Ward, “Grand Bahamians have so much to be thankful for, whether one lives in the east or the west, especially in the light of Hurricane Matthew.

“Certainly, we give God thanks as there were no lives lost unlike some of our brothers and sisters in The Bahamas and countries around the world, who were more adversely affected by recent hurricanes, we returned to most of our schools in the shortest possible timeframe.

“Although recovery island-wide and throughout our nation is still ongoing and many homes have yet to have their roofs repaired, when we consider that the Christ Child had nowhere to lay His head when He came into the world, we are indeed truly blessed.

“As we usher in another Advent Season, let us lift our voices as an excellent expression of thankfulness and appreciation to God for the wonderful gift of his Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord and King!”

District Superintendent Butler happily agreed with the sentiments expressed by Ward and engaged all to readily embrace the message that Jesus spoke to help mankind light a path of hope and peace, despite the troubling times.

Urging all to share the good news of Salvation with others, Butler stated, “Jesus is the reason for this and all seasons hence we must share His message of peace, love and goodwill to all.

“Furthermore, as we enjoy the wondrous, melodious performances of the Festival of Carols as so eloquently delivered by the youth of Grand Bahama, it is hoped that all families are blessed with good health, happiness, peace and prosperity both in this holiday season and in the coming New Year.”

The District Superintendents extended gratitude to Pinder, who serves as the Festival of Carols Chairperson as well as committee members Sandra Missick, Terah Smith, Verona Missick and Desiree Rolle-Forbes, ushers Ann Russell, Agnes Rolle, Darlene Hayes, Adagio Forbes, musical director Ricardo Major and all teachers, students, parents and the technical team of Community at Heart Tabernacle, Church of God of Prophecy and moderators, Head girl and Deputy head girl Kylah Davis and Elysha Darville of Eight Mile Rock High School and Jack Hayward Senior High School respectively.

Appreciative of God’s love for all, Pinder encouraged everyone to remember that Christ is the ultimate gift and the Lord loves us all, as biblical scripture declares outright in John 3:16 which states, “For God so loved the world, that He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

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