You Don’t Look a Day Over 149

You Don’t Look a Day Over 149 June 5, 2012

Well, I can tell you that a whole weekend of celebration is hard when you’re as old as 150.  Or 42, for that matter.

This past weekend Calvary celebrated 150 years here on the corner of H and 8th Streets, NW.  One concert, one fancy dinner, and one huge worship service later, the church staff limped their way into church on Monday morning feeling like they’d completed a marathon.  Just barely.

Some highlights:

  • An incredible concert with a piece composed just for this occasion by Josh Coyne and performed by Calvary’s incomparable music staff and friends.
  • A bomb threat that required the FBI to come into the building with bomb sniffing dogs on Friday.
  • The steeple bells rang again after many years of silence, leading one neighbor to stop by the church office with her thanks, exclaiming: “I now feel like I’m part of a community.”
  • A formal gala the likes of which Calvary has not seen in some time had Woodward Hall looking amazing.  The event quickly became affectionately referred to as the “Calvary Prom.”
  • Former Calvary organist Jay Parotta gave our grand organ quite a workout with an incredible show at the organ bench Friday night.
  • Sunday morning worship had the sanctuary filled with worshippers who sang “The Church’s One Foundation” in such a way that it brought tears to your eyes.
  • A champagne toast offered by Trustee chairman Ken Butler exclaimed with gusto: “May we all raise our glasses to toast our outstanding, visionary clergy, committed lay leadership, and may Calvary Baptist Church grace the corner of H and 8th streets, with its steeple bells ringing, for another 150 years!”
  • Washington Theatre Lab directors Buzz Mauro and Deb Gottesman sang “Honey Bun” to the pastor.  Embarrassing.
  • Kevin Biggins, who played Calvary’s organ from the time he was 15 years old, returned having finished college to play Sunday worship again just as wonderfully as he did when he left.
  • Flash flood and tornado warnings kept many people home on Friday night.
  • The church administrator wore a tuxedo!
  • We showed a video of Calvary members talking about what Calvary means to them now.
  • Many, many friends from years gone by returned to see what Calvary is up to now.  There were so many joy-filled reunions all over the church all weekend long.

All of these things truly happened, and many more, on this wonderful, exhausting weekend.  The very best part of all was seeing how much and how well Calvary has impacted the community and been such a beacon of light in so many lives for so many years!

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