Getting The Spirit

Up several flights of stairs into a small but airy blue sanctuary with high windows, the singing hasn’t started, but the drums and organ are warming up, seats full and pews stocked with paper fans from the local funeral home. Needless to say, getting the spirit raises temperatures. Amen. This Saturday I met Carrie up in Harlem for the fourth annual gospel choir festival at the Elmendorf Reformed Church. Our friend Laura was singing, the proceeds went to autism research, and the noise promised to be joyous unto the lord and anyone else who might be listening. The church itself (now in its fifth home uptown) was founded 350 years ago, and, as the MC Elder Kevin Spooner said “it feels like some of us have been here that long”. Amen. Four choirs. Organ, piano, bass, drums.The crowd instructed to sing out if the spirit moved us, and moved we were. And afterwards, we waltzed out into the warm Saturday Harlem night to Sylvia’s for fried chicken. Amen.

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