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Worship time at the Baptist World Congress is generally well-prepared and impressively offered, often incorporating different languages, which is entirely appropriate for a global organization comprised of more than 115 member bodies. This year’s meeting in Honolulu is no exception.

The preaching is often good and other elements are well done, but my favorite part is the music, especially when it involves a children’s choir. I was pleased when the Thursday night celebration began with 20 minute’s worth of the World Vision Korean Children’s Choir, which is celebrating its 50th year (obviously not with the same children Billy Kim first recruited in 1960). I’ve seen traveling choirs from the group several times through the years, and have enjoyed every carefully choreographed performance.

There must have been more than two hundred children on the stage in Honolulu, singing in both Korean and in English, mixing upbeat versions of songs ranging from “Amazing Grace” to “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot,” with a few old American folk tunes thrown in.

The children’s training must be rigorous: their angelic smiles and impeccable behavior (on stage, at least) are a match for their delightful harmonies, colorful costumes, and energetic dance routines. Part of me would like to peek in and see if they behave with such sweet innocence at home.

The other part of me, however, simply savors the image the children portray: the world needs more of their sweetness and I, for one, could use a good dose of their energy.

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