The Singing Church

Somehow the sung word reaches us deeper than many sermons or devotions can. And so it’s always special when a church sings from the bottom of its heart. We had such occasion on Feb 8th with Rev. James Hart Brumm, pastor of the Blooming Grove Reformed Church in DeFreestville, NY, across the Hudson River from Albany.

James met with the Senior Choir for a rehearsal in the morning and shared numerous stories from his rich life in the church. The he led the singing during worship, assisted by our organist and choir director Ben Berman and our Bell Choir director Erie Beemsterboer. Prior to his coming, we had furnished James with a wish list of songs and hymns from Sing! A New Creation and asked that he would introduce us to these. We could not have found a better teacher – James had contributed to this hymnal and was a member of the committee that had created it.

Following worship, we had a great lunch and a little autograph party with James in the Randolph Room. Here participants could obtain a copy of Liturgy Among the Thorns, an introduction to Reformed worship, Christian education, architecture, etc. James edited this book; it is part of the Historical Series of our denomination. All proceeds above the production cost of the book will benefit our historic preservation project. Thank you, James, for a wonderful Sunday at church. And thank you to our Education & Worship Committee that put a beautiful lunch together.

About Rev. Dr. Hartmut Kramer-Mills

Hartmut Kramer-Mills, a native of Jena, Germany, began his theological education at Heidelberg University. After the Middle Exam in 1986 he received a scholarship from the World Alliance of Reformed Churches for McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. He graduated from McCormick with a Master of Divinity in 1988. He graduated from Marburg University in Germany with the Ecclesiastical Exam in 1990, and received a Dr. theol. from Greifswald University, Germany, in 1997. From 1990 to 1991 he was vicar at St. Wenzel in Naumburg, Germany. He was ordained minister of word and sacrament in 1993 through the Protestant Church of the Church Province of Saxony. From 1993 to 1998 he served as assistant pastor in Stoessen, Goerschen, and Rathewitz, Germany. At the same time he was lecturer for Church History at Erfurt College in Germany. From 1999 to 2000 he served the Spotswood Reformed Church in New Jersey as interim pastor. Since 2000 he and his wife serve the First Reformed Church in New Brunswick, New Jersey, as co-pastors.
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