Athens Review, Athens, Texas


July 5, 2014

CSUMC provided a memorable experience

Athens — My wife Jean and I went to a very interesting, and what I consider a very unique event last Saturday night.

I had heard that the church where we are members, Carroll Springs United Methodist Church, was having an event in which people sitting in the audience would sing their favorite hymns into a microphone.

I have been a member of Toastmasters International for more than 30 years, and could remember my first trip to a mic’ in front of a lot of people as a nervous experience, to say the least. But that was just to give a short speech – not sing. 

Certainly, I believed that to sing in front of a group would be even more challenging.  Therefore, Jean and I went to the gathering Saturday to watch what others were doing, and perhaps at the next one, I may openly participate, doing more than applauding. We thought – well we might, but perhaps not.  The jury was still out.

I watched as people, both members of CSUMC, and those who are not, were singing their hearts out. I learned that there was some thought about making it an entertaining performance. 

But, the most important part of singing to the group was to communicate their feelings about the Lord Jesus Christ. 

They were people of all backgrounds, ages and genders.

After some congregational gospel hymns, the service is opened up to anyone who would like to sing, play or offer another musical gifts. Solos, duets, or groups could offer two pieces each. Recorded background tracks on cassettes, CD's, or digital media could be used.  A pianist and bass player were also available for live accompaniment.

The Rev. Steven C. Newcomb, Sr., pastor of the church, said the event can be classified as a tradition.

“Our monthly services of singing are truly incredible opportunities to worship God through music. Although they start like a traditional ‘hymn sing,’ the movement into a time of opportunity for any and all present to offer special offerings of song, not only allows those individuals or groups who play or sing to worship through their offerings, but also provides a powerful worship experience for everyone in the room,” the pastor said. “Anyone who wishes to offer special music may do so with up to two pieces. Our service starts at 6 p.m. on the fourth Saturday of each month, and goes until we are done. The singing is followed by a time of table fellowship, with food provided by the members of Carroll Springs UMC.”

The church is located at 5810 County Road 4600, Athens. The pastor’s e-mail is

Congratulations to all who sang. It was a wonderful evening of fellowship, as Pastor Newcomb has indicated.  I’m sure most everyone left feeling as high on God and beautiful memories as Jean and I were.

And, the food after the event was as truly wonderful as it always is when CSUMC church members spend their time cooking before the church events.

A special thanks goes to, not only those that performed, but also to those who organized the event.  The Rev. Newcomb comes to mind, as well as the song leader for the church, Dana Mitchell. Certainly, Melinda Mitchell played a big part, as well as many others that I saw moving around helping others with microphones, musical instruments and various other duties.

Jeff Riggs is Associate Editor of the Athens Daily Review.

Text Only
  • Wilson mug.JPG Rolling into something new

    She did it.
    My baby girl rolled over for the first time this past week while daddy and mommy were watching closely.
    As other major news broke across the county, watching my baby roll over for the first time was by far the biggest news of the week for me. Odd.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Joe new mug.jpg Fanfare is a time to prepare for another season

    I love to see the talent our student athletes have across Henderson County. To know that each player puts in the blood, sweat and tears to play for a district championship and hopefully a state title is something special to see.
    Another great in the world of sports is a player who is retiring this season in New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter.
    Jeter once said, “There may be people who have more talent than you, but there's no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do — and I believe that.”

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • kathi New  copy.jpeg The greatest country in the world has hungry children

    No child should go hungry. We are the greatest country in the world, yet we have hungry children.
    An article I recently read said that if a child in school can't afford lunch, they will be given a sandwich and water. I was told the sandwich is cheese between two pieces of bread.
    I hope everyone realizes that is what they serve in the county jail. Not that I know this from personal experience. I was told from someone who did know from experience.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wilson mug.JPG Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase

    Hakuna Matata! What a wonderful phrase.
    Hakuna Matata! Ain't no passing craze.
    It means no worries for the rest of your days.
    It's our problem-free philosophy.
    Hakuna Matata!
    Congratulations, if you have watched the Lion King a couple of times you now have this song stuck in your head for the rest of the day.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jeff's mug.jpg It was a week in the depth of heat, then cooler

    Sunday and Monday of this week have been very uncomfortable.  The air conditioner at our house has been down, and the temperature outside and in the house have been way up.
    Thank God for the blessing of the cool temperatures and the rain that fell on Tuesday, then on Wednesday.  It changed things just a little bit.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Time away is necessary for everyone

    I can remember as a kid writing essays on “How I Spent My Summer Vacation.” As the years pass, and we are more in-tune with the workplace, those vacations get shorter and shorter.
    Do you ever have those days  when you just need a vacation? Sometimes you just need to get away.
    Taking time off work should be fun and rejuvenating. We all need a recharge every now and then. But vacations aren't what they use to be. We rarely disconnect ourselves from our jobs.

    July 12, 2014

  • Joe new mug.jpg Student athletes: Time to wake up and get to work

    Hey student athletes, it is about time for you to wake up and get to work.
    Your summer is coming to an end, and the early morning wake up calls for practices are right around the corner.
    I am talking to the football players, volleyball players, cross country kids, band members, drill team members and cheerleaders.

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wilson mug.JPG Remember who you are

    Are you running so fast that you have forgotten why you started the race in the first place?
    Life moving at a blistering pace that it is tough to keep up?
    Maybe it is time to stop, take a deep look into the pool of water and remember. Remember who you are.
    On numerous occasions, I have had to do just that. Ironically, various movies have caused me to look inside.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jeff's mug.jpg CSUMC provided a memorable experience

    My wife Jean and I went to a very interesting, and what I consider a very unique event last Saturday night.
    I had heard that the church where we are members, Carroll Springs United Methodist Church, was having an event in which people sitting in the audience would sing their favorite hymns into a microphone.

    July 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rich mug.jpg Independence ultimately won on battlefield

    I always enjoy celebrating Independence Day, and hearing some of the stirring words written in the Declaration of Independence.
    Thomas Jefferson wrote that our Creator has given us certain rights, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The way I see it, if I have life and liberty, that gives me a pretty good start on the third one.
    But as eloquent as our founding fathers were, and how moving the texts they left behind, one fact can’t be overlooked. Our independence was ultimately won and secured on the battlefield.

    July 3, 2014 1 Photo

Biz Marquee
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue