Choir sings for deceased pastor

Traditional worship services may be suspended amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but choir members from Second Presbyterian Church, one of the largest congregations in our hometown of Memphis, found a way to honor and remember a beloved clergyman who succumbed to the disease.

Social-distancing never sounded quite like this – so mournful, yet dignified and moving.

Traditional worship services may be suspended amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but choir members from Second Presbyterian Church, one of the largest congregations in our hometown of Memphis, found a way to honor and remember a beloved clergyman who succumbed to the disease.

The Rev. Tim Russell, a 62-year-old assistant pastor to middle adults, died of COVID-19 complications March 30.

While maintaining a safe space between one another, some two dozen choir members gathered outside Russell’s home and sang the traditional Christian hymn “Blessed Assurance” to his widow, Kathe, who stepped out onto the front porch to watch.

Accompanied by birds chirping in the background on a pleasant spring day, the members lifted their voices for the chorus:

This is my story, this is my song,

Praising my Savior all the day long;

This is my story, this is my song,

Praising my Savior all the day long

A video of the event, shared on social media, found a large, receptive audience eager for an uplifting message amid the pandemic. It was featured on NBC’s Nightly News broadcast and the TODAY Show.

The Nightly News aired the video as part of a regular segment called “There’s Good News Tonight.”

Something we could all use a little more of.

DISCOVER