The Ministry of Music at First United Methodist Church strives to glorify God in worship, minister to its members in ways that enable both musical and spiritual growth, and provide quality musical events for the entertainment and inspiration of the community of Roswell. With the Chancel Choir, Silver Chords, Heaven ConneXion, Wesley Singers, Cherub Choir, Kaler Bell Choir, and encounter Praise Team, First Church’s music ministries involve nearly 150.
Adult Musical Organizations
CHANCEL CHOIR - Wednesdays, 7:15-8:30 p.m. - childcare is provided First Church’s Chancel Choir is one of the finest in Eastern New Mexico. Under the direction of John Fuss, the choir rehearses in the Choir Room every week, from mid-August through June, and performs every Sunday in worship. Major choral works, such as Händel’s The Messiah, Vivaldi’s Magnificat and Gloria, Leavitt’s Missa Festiva and Requiem, Rutter’s Requiem, Fauré’s Requiem, Mozart’s Requiem, Ellingboe’s Requiem, Haydn’s Mass in D, and Schubert’s Mass in G, are performed with orchestra during Advent and Lent. The choir also sings in the annual Salute to Veterans program and the Christmas Eve Candlelight Service. The only requirement to join the Chancel Choir is a love of singing and a commitment to serve God. Contact John Fuss for more information.
SILVER CHORDS - Tuesdays, 2:00-3:00 p.m. The ministry of the Silver Chords is unique because its ministry is almost exclusively outside the church. Silver Chords is comprised of mostly retired adults who enjoy singing Southern-Gospel-style choral arrangements of hymns and other sacred songs. Under the direction of John Fuss, the choir meets in the Choir Room for 10-12 weeks in both Fall and Spring in the Choir Room. The first 4-5 weeks are spent preparing a 45-minute program which is then sung for the residents in the city’s 7 nursing homes and retirements facilities, as well as for the inmates at the Roswell Correctional Center.
KALER BELL CHOIR - Wednesdays, 6:05-7:05 p.m. - childcare is provided The Kaler Bell Choir, named to honor former Director of Music, Ralph Kaler, plays a variety of sacred pieces in worship throughout the year on the church’s 4-octave sets of handbells and choirchimes®. Under the direction of John Fuss, the ensemble meets in Room 213, from September through May. In addition to performing in worship, the ensemble presents a Christmas Concert/Ring-a-Long, a Spring Concert/Ring-a-Long and plays at the annual Salute to Veterans Program. The ability to read music, especially rhythmic notation is very helpful. Contact John Fuss for more information.
Youth Musical Organizations
HEAVEN CONNEXION - Sundays, 4:30 pm. Heaven ConneXion is for youth in grades 6-12. Under the direction of John Fuss, the choir meets weekly, during the school year, in the Choir Room. In addition to singing in worship on a regular basis and the Christmas Eve Candlelight Service, the members of Heaven ConneXion enjoy taking regularly-scheduled choir tours. Previous National tours have visited the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia, the mid-Atlantic States and Washington D.C., the Desert Southwest and Southern California, the Mid-South and New Orleans, and the Midwest, as well as regional tours in Texas, New Mexico, and Colorado.
Children's Musical Organizations
WESLEY SINGERS - Wednesdays, 6:00-7:00 p.m. The Wesley Singers is for elementary-aged children in grades 1-6. Under the direction of Michelle Olson the choir meets weekly, during the school year, in Room 114. The children sing in worship on a regular basis as well as the Christmas Eve Candlelight service. The Wesley Singers also go to the homes of shut-in members and sing Christmas carols. The children often take a weekend “mini choir tour” in May to give them an idea of what they will experience on Heaven ConneXion tours. For more information, contact Michelle Olson.
CHERUB CHOIR - Wednesdays, 4:15-5:00 p.m. The Cherub Choir is designed for pre-school children who are at least 3 years old. Led by John Fuss, the Cherub Choir meets weekly, throughout the school year, in Room 204. A variety of games, songs and other musical activities are designed to help the children learn to work within a group setting and use music to praise God. The children sing in worship 4-5 times during the year. For more information, contact John Fuss.
JOHN R. FUSS, LLP- Director of Music Ministries
MICHELLE OLSON - Organist
MICHELLE OLSON - Wesley Singers Director
KAREN FUSS - Heaven ConneXion Accompanist