While the many Christian denominations in Colorado have unique doctrines and different approaches to worship, they all share a fervent belief in Jesus Christ and a tradition of praising him in song.
Late in 2017, four congregations in the southwest suburbs of Denver gathered to do just that. The 20th Annual Interfaith Concert featured around 225 musicians from the Columbine Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, the Columbine United Church, St. Frances Cabrini Parish and St. Philip Lutheran Church. Around 600 people attended the performance.
“This is a wonderful event that brings us together to make a joyful noise as we focus not on our differences but on our common faith in Jesus Christ,” said Rev. Brad Doty, assistant pastor of St. Philip Lutheran Church.
The unique event began in 1997 with only two churches participating: The Columbine Stake and St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Parish. For twenty years both churches have continued to perform together, while welcoming up to three other local churches to join every year. Held in the fall, the Interfaith Concert has become a beloved start to the holiday season.
This year’s concert allowed the choirs to shine individually and as a group. Each choir shared their own selection and then joined together for the four final songs. The evening ended with “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing,” which was also performed at the very first concert.
Being the 20th anniversary of the concert, it was fitting that some of the people who helped make the event what it is were recognized. Dan Wyatt was celebrated for directing the St. Francis Cabrini choir every year. And Rebecca Jensen and Melinda Baird, who conceived of the idea initially more than two decades ago in the Columbine Stake, were in attendance.
While the attendees of the performance enjoyed inspiring music for one night, the bridges built between many people of faith will last much longer.