Last year, it was half way around the world. This year it was the state next door.
But the meaning of the Louisiana College Chorale's Spring Tour was not in any way diminished by its close proximity. In fact, one moment stood out - when the LC singers visited a youth detention center. Following the concert, more than 40 of the young people housed their made public professions of faith in Jesus Christ.
"Only God can take a group of 'high church' musicians singing chorale music... and only God can bring salvation through that, and He did," said student conductor John Simmons. "It was really an awesome time, and God really used it."
Another moment that stood out to senior Chorale president Alana Pate was a visit to a special needs home. Whatever barriers that may have existed by their handicaps were easily overcome by the power of music.
"Just to be able to love on them knowing that most of them probably don't have a lot of visitors, it was really great," Pate said.
With precious memories fresh on their minds and hearts, the LC Chorale shared their stories and their songs back home Thursday night. The annual Spring Tour Concert featured all the songs that the Chorale performed in Texas as well as churches in Shreveport and Mansfield, La.
The Spring Tour is an effort the students work on as soon as the school year starts in the fall. Though much of their first semester is spent on Christmas music, the singers did have to quickly polish their spring selections since Spring Break came much earlier this year.
Even so, Dr. Fred Guilbert was again able to blend the many talents of his students into a musical production that once again touched many hearts and lives.
"We strive for a level of excellence that can be collegiate in nature, and we challenge the students musically because some of them are so gifted and talented," Dr. Guilbert said. "But the spirit of the song - the message of the song - the spirit of the group as they perform the song... I want the kids to sing with intensity and passion. And mainly for the Lord."
Watch excerpts and interviews from this year's concert here: