The Words of the Higashibaba Family
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
We would first of all like to thank everyone who participated in last year's contest. There were entries from all over the world and many different aspects of our church work were represented, including missionary countries, home church members, and so forth. It was a very moving and inspiring experience to receive and listen to the many songs. Thank you very much.
Last year's prize went to an English brother named David Earle. David wrote a very powerful and uplifting song called "Marching to the Promised Land." His song will go into the collection with past years' winners, and eventually a final theme song will be chosen from among them.
The inspiration and direction for an annual home church theme song contra came from Mr. David S.C. Kim, president of the Unification Theological Seminary in Barrytown, New York.
Here are some guidelines to help you catch President Kim's vision. Because home church is the final goal in God's providence, President Kim is looking for a theme song about home church which can reflect and represent the worldwide movement.
First of all, therefore, the song should be of a universal nature. Such a song could be sung by brothers and sisters from any country or any culture. As President Kim said (and I wish you could hear his passionate voice!) "Black, white, yellow, doesn't matter! Everybody can sing!"
Secondly, President Kim is looking for a song which can be sung by a group of any size Imagine a congregation of 10,000 brothers and sisters, he advised. For this reason the song needs to be simple and melodious.
Thirdly, President Kim is looking for a song which, while it is simple, has a message of our faith and hope as it is fulfilled through home church.
Hymns and Holy Songs generally have the qualities of universality, simplicity, and depth. Use such songs as your guideline. As you will discover, there is a lot of room for variety and character even within such specifications. (Compare "Song of the Heavenly Soldiers" with "Blessing of Glory," for example.)
Based on his spiritual insight President Kim offered one more suggestion. It is good to end your song, at least in the final verse, with an ascending interval or phrase.
To clarify further, songs with a specific style such as Swiss yodeling, Islamic calls to faith, American country and western music or the like are very beautiful but require special skills and so are not suitable for large international congregations. Be sure your song is "singable" by everyone.
The specific requirements are:
Include the theme and/or words about home church in the lyrics.
Submit a copy of all the lyrics.
Submit a tape recording of your song.
Submit a manuscript of the musical notation (optional but desirable).
Be sure to include your address and mission so that you can be contacted in the future.
President Kim is offering a $50.00 prize to each year's winner. The deadline for your entries is May 15, 1985. Please send your songs to:
Home Church Theme Song Contest
c/o Andrea Higashibaba
10 Dock Road
Barrytown, N.Y. 12507
All entries will be kept in President Kim's archives to give testimony to God's providence in this time. President Kim has also said that he will be our "spiritual postman" and take the final winning song to Father for approval. Please submit your songs in joyful anticipation and assurance of their beauty to God and True Parents.
Thank you all for your work for True Parents throughout the world. Let us remember that home church is our goal and destiny. Let us work together to fulfill that destiny.
In True Parents' Names