As the Greater Northwest Area enters the season of Lent, again experiencing a time of physical distancing, one local church musician is inviting all United Methodists in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington to celebrate Holy Week and Easter together through music.

James Payne, music director at Clarkston UMC in Clarkston, Wash., is inviting folks – choirs, singers and musicians in the local church – to join him in a virtual mass choir to celebrate Holy Week and Easter. “During this time, we long to be together. Although we cannot physically be together, we can join together in song and worship from a distance.” 

In partnership, the Regional Media Center and the Office of Connectional Ministries (PNW) are asking all local church pastors and leaders to encourage members of their congregation – professional and amateur, paid and unpaid musicians alike – to participate in this virtual mass choir to remind us that even though we’re apart, we can still raise our voices in holy harmony as we celebrate our togetherness in Christ.

Here’s how to participate:

There are two songs available as options to join in singing. You may choose to sign up for one or both of the songs. Recordings are due by February 26.

  1. Crown of Thorns – sheet music
  2. Christ Has Conquered the Grave – sheet music

More details, including how to shoot your video, which recording devices you’ll need, mp3 practice and sing-along guides and instructions to sign up can be found at

The final videos will be available for use by all local churches and ministries with the Alaska, Oregon-Idaho or Pacific Northwest Conferences. No participation in the choir is required.

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