December 09, 2023

‘Then sings my soul’

Members of the group Grace Alone perform during the Local Talent Night at The Gathering Place Sunday, Nov. 5.

If you weren’t smiling or tapping your toes Sunday night, you weren’t at a local talent night at The Gathering Place in Greenfield — the latest edition of the Good News Concert Series there.

One by one, 16 acts took the stage on the night to share their music with a message.

Freeland said he couldn’t be more happy with how well this local talent night went. An estimated 130 people were in attendance.

“[Sunday] night was way beyond what I ever expected,” event planner Gary Freeland said. Trent Buckner was key in getting a lot of the acts on the show bill. “We just put it out there for people to volunteer. We had varied types of Christian music, presentations, voices, piano — it was just fantastic and I really enjoyed it.”

Freeland began the Good News Concert Series several months ago to bring gospel music to Greenfield. Each first Sunday of the month, a variety of acts have played The Gathering Place, which is the former home of the Greenfield First Presbyterian Church.

The series has developed quite a following. While a lot of it is Southern Gospel-style, other Christian groups have also performed.

“These are people who really practice at it and do it a lot. These are people who, three or four times a month, they’re doing good news music,” Freeland said. “To me ‘good news music’ is about the good news of Jesus Christ.”

Going forward, Freeland plans to call back some of the acts who have performed here before because they were well-received, and he will keep his eyes and ears open for future acts.

Performers at the local talent night were Phil and Cheryl Cannon; Mechidel and Cherubim Mercado; the three tenors of Stuart (Steve Kroeger, Joe Reece and Chris Siebrasse, with others); Melody Olson; Sara Piearson; Grace Alone (Karen Schulteis, Sue Schulteis, Terry Cooper, Shelly Golightly, Connie Sheehy, Kay Adair and Katrina Schulteis); Pastor Ben Turner; Zoey Van Donselaar; The Greenfield United Methodist Church Mens Quartet (Dan Dickinson, Sam Schwartz, Keland Schwartz and Lee Ashmore); Pastor Steven Broers; Galen Schwochow; Gospel in Song (Mildred Loe); Sing 4 Him (Kenneth McWhorter, Loe, Schwochow, Buckner); Connie Lundy; Buckner; and Freeland.

Steven Broers of Fontanelle performs "I Can Only Imagine" by MercyMe and "House of the Lord" by Phil Wickham during the Local Talent Night.

A free-will offering went to The Gathering Place. Freeland said that the facility has been a very fitting space to host these concerts in. Future enhancements, which may include ramps, would help even more for groups to get heavy equipment up and down the stairs.

The Good News Concert Series will have a special edition in April, when Freeland plans to have three different acts perform here.

“There are a lot of people excited about a lot of different types of music within the Christian environment. We do have a core group who likes the Southern Gospel music. The Fontanelle Lutheran Church did a separate concert on another Sunday, and that was really nice,” Freeland said. “It has been nice getting to know so many people from different Christian faiths at these events. It is wonderful to see brothers and sisters in Christ in one place. This is also a neutral location, in that it’s not anyone else’s church.”

Caleb Nelson

Caleb Nelson

Caleb Nelson has served as News Editor of the Adair County Free Press and Fontanelle Observer since Oct. 2017. He and his wife Kilee live in Greenfield. In Greenfield and the greater Adair County area, he values the opportunity to tell peoples' stories, enjoys playing guitar, following all levels of sports, and being a part of his local church.