Mountain Mission School Choir dazzles at Hillcrest Christian Church

BEDFORD – Sunday night, Hillcrest Christian Church hosted the Mountain Mission Choir from Virginia to sing. From 6 p.m. until 6:30., the 46 students of the Mountain Mission private school performed a beautiful arrangement of songs.

The high-school-aged students ranged from 15 to 18, and when they weren’t singing for God’s glory, they were delights to be around before and after the performance.

Family Life Minister Jimmy Johnson gave their introduction, and he was followed by the Choir Director Kyle Crafton. A small video introduced the history of the school, begun in 1921.

The video was followed by the 46-student choir performance.

Each song was introduced by a different student with either a personal story or anecdote reflecting biblical lessons and encouragement.

A complete list of the songs included:

  • All Creatures of Our God and King
  • O Sifuni Mungu (All Creatures of our God and King)
  • Be Thou My Vision
  • Home by Phillip Phillips
  • Lift Up Your Voice Unto the King
  • Joy Comes in the Morning

Clips from the performance are provided below:

Anna Mayer, a 17-year-old senior has been part of the Mountain Mission School since her missionary family’s call to serve at the school, and she has been there for nearly 12 years. She said that the school has become an extension of her family since she began going.

She plans to study mechanical engineering once she graduates, and learn languages, following her dreams of being a linguist and polyglot. She plans to attend Milligan University.

This interest in language is spurred in part by her two best friends, also at the school. One is El-Salvadorian, and the other is from Ethiopia.

Anna Mayer, 17, and best friend Salomè Alemu, 15.

Salomè came to the US from Ethiopia with her mother when she was four years old, and has found a place at the Mountain Missin School.

She speaks flawless English and her native Ethiopian, maintaining aspects of her culture even in the States. Salomè enjoys running and photography as hobbies, explaining that she likes to take pictures of the little things, “the moments most people don’t look at. A different perspective, I guess.”

The girls, part of the Mountain Mission School Choir, have been on tour as a group for the last three days and Hillcrest was their last stop. By the time they performed at Hillcrest, they’d sung at two Sunday morning services earlier that day, then traveled to Bedford for their last performance before driving back.

The drive from Grundy, Virginia, took around 6 hours for the Mission School bus.

Choir Director Kyle Crafton has been in charge of the choir for 2 years now. He hadn’t directed a choir before the Mountain Mission, and when the school asked if he would like to direct, he said “Well, I’ve never directed a choir, but I’ve directed a worship team and led a youth group, so we can figure it out.”

Kyle said he has learned “A lot,” in two years. “One of the previous directors that retired, she led the choir for 30 years, stepped back this year… She taught me some of the ropes, and things, and has been a big part of this year’s success.”