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The Salvation Army Visit to Tarvin for Praise & Puds

1st October 2019 @ 6:06am – by Charles Bradley
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tmc salvation army band sept 2019

The Band and Songsters of Chester Salvation Army are old friends of ours at Tarvin Methodist Church, having been visiting us to lead a Carol Service in December each year since the mid-1980s. However, several years ago, we decided that we ought to do something else – something different from the carols, tea and mince pies which previously characterised all of their visits. The invitation went out for them to pay an extra visit to us each September for an evening less-restricted by custom and formality – an evening where we could praise the Lord by singing along with the brass band through a wider range of hymns, an evening of wonderful musicianship and harmony – and of lashings of lovely puddings to follow. The invitation was accompanied with the instruction: 'Come hungry!'

tmc  songsters sept 2019

This year, the evening was on Thursday 19th September and Tarvin Methodist Church was well-attended, with very few seats being left empty. The evening lived up to expectation. The band was in fine form and the choice of hymns and songs was such that everyone was able joyously to participate.The songsters, too, made a marvellous sound; all the more appreciated because they and the band are pretty much the same folk. Humour featured largely, too, especially when audience participation was requested for a display of the use of what in my schooldays were called tambourines but which the Salvation Army always refer to with the old biblical name of timbrels. A sequence which seemed easy and uncomplicated clearly wasn't, but Rachael and Sybil coped well and earned a round of applause.

tmc copy of timbrels in training sept 2019

All too soon, the evening's music was concluded – but our sorrow was mitigated considerably by the availability of a table full of Tarvin Methodist Church ladies' famous puddings, which everyone enjoyed hugely. Indeed, for some of us it was difficult to realise when we should stop and, at the end of the evening, there remained only a few crumbs – testimony to the enjoyment which the puddings had provided.

tmc enjoying the puds sept 2019

There was no charge for the evening – everyone just "sang for their supper". However, a retiring collection for the work of the Chester Salvation Army raised over £230, which will be used to fund the splendid work done by the "Army", week in and week out, amongst the neediest within our community. What a superb evening! We must do it again NEXT September!

ED: Click on photographs to enlarge.

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