As we continue to watch the ongoing events surrounding refugees and immigration; the heart-wrenching separation of families; the uncertainty of life in detention centers; the longing of many for safety and security; many of us feel a need to respond to this crisis happening before our very eyes.
Like so many of us, music producer, composer, and musician Bobby Fisher looked for ways that he could make a difference but what could one person do? What does any musician do when he needs backup? He calls other musicians. What do musicians do? They play music! Through the efforts of Bobby Fisher, Bellarmine Chapel, and The Pierson-Young-Project,
a musical event was born.
"Share the Journey; a Concert for Compassion" was created in 2018 as a benefit concert featuring local music artists and performers invited to donate their talents and resources to raise money for two organizations working on the frontline to address this crisis; The Kino Border Initiative and the League of United Latin American Citizens are both organizations that work extensively to serve and assist refugees, detainees, and immigrant families.
Thanks to the generosity and support from the performers, those who attended, and donors, the first Share the Journey Concert was a huge success, raising over $4,500 dollars.
Now in 2019 the music community will once again come together to use the power of music to make a difference. Single artists and groups from various music genres such as folk, contemporary Christian, gospel, indie, etc. will perform and monies will once again be raised through ticket sales, artists merchandise sales, and donations.
We thank you for last years success and we look forward to performing for you again!!!
One of my proudest accomplishments as a songwriter was to write the song “Hope is Alive.” I wrote it as the title track for an audio-visual production for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.
It was created to bring awareness to the ministry of Cincinnati’s Catholic inner-city schools. Since then, it has been the title track for The Mother of Christ Gospel Choir CD and the title track for the first Pierson-Young Project CD.
It has truly been a blessing to have the song embraced by so many people. My prayer is that more and more people will be touched by it and grasp the message behind it. I’m thankful and humbled that God has allowed me to be an instrument for such a profound message. Lately I’ve been pondering a few thoughts I would like to share.
The phrase “hope is alive” is not an original thought by me and in some ways, it has become almost common place. Many of us have heard Rev. Jessie Jackson using the phrase “keep hope alive” for years; especially in his run for Presidency. It has been the theme and message of other songwriters, speech writers, sermons, productions, etc.
However, I want to talk about the message in the context of my universe. Recently I began taking a hard look at what it means to be an advocate of the hope message in the midst of an environment, culture, and mindset of hopelessness. Is it naïve to continue the hope campaign when everything looks so bleak? Am I wearing rose-colored glasses and just not seeing what everybody else sees? Is it foolish to hope?
On the other hand, if I don’t have hope; then what do I have?
If I don’t have hope then what I have, -is what I see and hear daily from those who have chosen to live without hope or very little of it. I see the bitterness, resentment, anxiety, loss of direction, fear, lack of vision, a disregard for humanity, and probably many other things too numerous to mention.
Most importantly, without hope my personal relationship with my God would take a serious hit. My faith takes a hit. What I also realized was that I have to be a willing participant in hope, not just for me but for others.
“It’s every day we walk these roads unknown. The journey may be long but we never walk alone. My brothers and sisters will walk with me, with God as our guide, hope is, hope is alive. Hope is Alive!”
What does that mean? If I am not part of the hope, I’m part of the hopelessness. God has given me a choice between hope and hopelessness. It is my choice to make and no one can take it from me.
“I call heaven and earth today to witness against you: I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live.” -Deuteronomy 30:19
That’s a serious proposition. The choice I make determines how I will live my life and how I will treat others as I travel on this life’s journey. My choice for hopelessness cannot be blamed on a group, an ideal, a concept, a person, a religion, or even a political party. My choice for hope will call for action on my part within my neighborhood, in my family, in my daily dealings with people.
It may not mean activism but it will certainly mean compassion without bitterness, judgement, or prejudice. It means that I must seek the deeper truth not just the external talking points.
Rev Jackson reminds us to “keep hope alive”; but hope keeps us alive. My conclusion: I’ll choose the hope; it’s my better option!