We began our first full day in South Dakota – without hours on the bus – with a brief prayer circle outside the hotel singing “the sun comes up, it’s a new day dawning. It’s time to sing your song again…” as we began our concerts today.
We had time to explore downtown Rapid City – a fun western frontier town – before our first concert at 2:00. The students did a great job and the people were very responsive! They really appreciated the patriotic music and even sang along on some of the praise songs. This area is largely unchurched.
At breakfast, we met the pastor of the United Methodist church we are using for some of our meals. He shared with us that 70% of the communities are not active in any church. He has been a big help to Connection Church – which is Southern Baptist – and he challenged us to learn from the experience of different denominations working together to reach people.
Once the concert ended and we had packed up the truck, we headed to the Ft. Hays Chuck Wagon Dinner and Music Show. The band leader asked our choir to sing a song, so we did a brief version of “Deep in the Heart of Texas” and “Glory, Glory, Hallelujah.” After the show, we headed out to Mt. Rushmore again to see the Lighting Ceremony. It is a majestic sight at night!
We are about to head to Connection Church for worship this morning, and prepare for our second concert tonight. God has blessed us with safe travels, good health and beautiful weather all along the way. Our mission project begins Monday morning, so continue to pray for us!