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Why Should We Pay Tribute to Ann Posey? by Milton Horne

Why should we pay tribute to Ann Posey
(upon retirement as church organist from Second Baptist Church)?
By Milton Horne

At the risk of being dramatic (but then, I’m a musician and can take such license of heart over mind), it’s not like Don McLean’s lyric in response to the death of “the Big Bopper” and Buddy Holly--”the day the music died…”, or Robert’s lovely “Widmung” to his Clara (Du meine Seele…), but with Ann’s retirement, it does feel like we are moving out of earth’s orbit and into interplanetary travel. Her steady gravity of love, patience, diligence, skill, and grace has kept us in meaningful (and proper, to me) orbit while we participated in Christian worship all of these years.

I won’t bore her (the eventual reader of this) with my love of her technical keyboard skill combined with a tasteful appreciation of a wide range of music and mediums for music (yes, she likes the electronic piano as well as organ and violin!). What I will miss most, though, is her teacher’s heart: that perspicacious commitment to us her students, for worship through music. She met us where we were, brought us along as we were willing to follow, and patiently led us to follow her to greater heights of love through music. She never “dumbed it down” by either cynically insisting upon only the older music, or uncritically embracing the more superficial (my opinion), mantra-like new stuff. Keeping worship in orbit is always a balance between opposing forces.

In a word, I pay tribute to Ann, because she has enriched my life and my experience of worship for all these years. We should do this together, because, as I suspect, she has done this for
each of us, by maintaining that balance, the balance known only by a teacher whose passion extends to both her students and her art.

at Saturday, January 5, 2019
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Winging in the New Year by Kim Kankiewicz

Are you among the forty-percent of Americans who make New Year’s resolutions? I am. Despite the common knowledge that most New Year’s resolutions are abandoned within weeks, and despite the mixed success of my own resolutions, I continue to set goals at the start of each year. I’m motivated by the opportunity for renewal and the occasion to think intentionally about the future.

My approach to goal setting and the nature of my goals have changed over time. These days January is more about recalibration than new endeavors, and my resolutions are more about impact than image. Still, I wonder about the role of resolutions in a life of faith. What does God think of my plan to write a book or to add distance to my jogging route? Will these accomplishments serve God’s purpose for my life and the lives of others?

I was pondering these questions as I went to bed after the countdown to New Year’s Day. Five hours later, I awoke to a phone call from my son, Jack, who was in his room across the hall. He’d been startled from his sleep by a bat swooping overhead and was afraid to get out of bed. Suddenly our lowkey holiday was centered on the flying rodent perched out of reach on Jack’s wall. We knew from experience that unless we captured the bat and had it tested, public health officials would consider Jack “exposed” and recommend rabies shots. (Here’s where I mention that I was inoculated against rabies in Minnesota in 2011. My growling dog roused me from sleep and alerted me to a bat swooping overhead while my husband, Adam, was out of town. I did what anyone would do: I screamed for five minutes and then called the police. The kind dispatcher sent a very tall officer to catch and release the bat. When I brought my dog in for a precautionary rabies booster the next day, the vet suggested that I needed shots too. Our county’s health department agreed.)

It turns out that nobody is available to help you capture a flying rodent on New Year’s Day. After waiting a few hours for the 24/7 pest control company to call us back, we decided to take matters into our own hands. When I say we, I mean Adam, who for once was home for the occasion. (Here’s where I mention the deer mouse infestation of 2017, which occurred during a Hantavirus outbreak in our neighborhood in Washington State. Adam had moved to Missouri for a new job while the kids and I stayed behind to finish the school year and sell our house—after eradicating the deer mice.)

Adam more than made up for his previous absences by locating the New Year’s bat, which had hidden behind Jack’s radiator, and coaxing it into a wastebasket with a wire hanger. He later transferred the bat to a sealed bucket with holes in the lid so that I could take it to the health department on January 2. As I write this, we’re awaiting lab results. 

The likelihood that the bat has rabies and bit Jack in his sleep is less than half a percent, but that’s not something you want to leave to chance. Which brings me back to resolutions. A winged intruder wasn’t part of our plan for the new year. As we reprioritized the first days of 2019 in response to changing circumstances, it occurred to me that New Year’s resolutions are about revisiting priorities as time marches on—which the Bible calls us to do. (Psalm 90:10-12) Change can come like a thief (or a bat) in the night, and our days on earth are limited. May we consider throughout the year how the goals we’re pursuing align with God’s purpose.

at Friday, January 4, 2019
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A Tribute to Ann Posey by Don E. Long

When my family first came to Second Baptist one of the first people I met was Ann Posey. I had been a Church Orchestra Director and performer for many years and I was hoping that the orchestra at 2BC had need of another Trombone player. As soon as the orchestra started rehearsing again, Ann had music ready for me and, as she does with all new members, made me feel right at home in the orchestra.

The Second Baptist Orchestra is comprised of members with just a few years of experience through those who have been playing for well over fifty years. Ann continually chooses accessible music for the orchestra’s varying ability levels while at the same time providing exciting and challenging musical opportunities. She also successfully reaches out to the instrumental community in the greater Kansas City area to bring in instrumentalists as needed to complete the needs of the orchestra.

Leading instrumental musicians is not an easy task. Many of us, myself chief among them, would not be considered “low maintenance” by any stretch of the imagination. From physical demands to the tactful correction of an experienced performer, Ann was adept at navigating this virtual minefield of needs and personalities, always keeping her smile and calm demeanor.  

One of my favorite memories of Ann is the kind postcards she made time to send after Advent, Easter, summertime, and music for special events. I’ll miss those handwritten cards of thanks and affirmation which made each of us feel valued as musicians.

at Thursday, January 3, 2019
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