Monday, August 10, 2015

Rated Five Out Of Five Stars

Normally, I wouldn't devote a whole blog post to a Friday night singing because generally speaking, there's not much to tell. I go, I sing, I come home; but, today is different because there is a lot to tell about the singing I went to this past Friday night. 

Last month at the singing at Lincoln, I made plans with Erika's mom (and Erika) to go to the singing at Mt. Carmel which is between Athens and Rogersville. We finalized our plans this past week and come Friday afternoon, I met Kay at Erika's house and we drove out to Erika's office and soon the three of us were on our way. One of Erika's co-workers gave her excellent directions for back roads through Limestone County so that we were able to avoid the Friday afternoon traffic on Highway 72. The directions were a huge blessing because we got there very easily with no trouble or traffic, arriving about 30 minutes before the singing started. 

When we pulled into the parking lot, there were maybe five cars there and I've gotta admit, I wasn't too hopeful for the night ahead. We made our way inside and found a pew close to the front and spread out a little so we wouldn't be too crowded. We saw a few familiar faces here and there, but mostly the room was full of people we didn't know. About 15 minutes before the singing was to get started, I made my way to the back for a restroom break and noticed that the building was filling up fast and there were people lined up out the door to get in. Soon, men started bringing in folding chairs because we were at standing room only capacity. I'm not sure how many people that small auditorium holds, but by the time the count was done, there were 352 people packed in. 

The singing itself was fantastic. Usually at these events, we make it through all the leaders and then about halfway through again. At Mt. Carmel, there were so many leaders that we only made it through the list once. Now, that can be a good thing or a bad thing. Good because some leaders you don't necessarily want to lead again and bad because there are some leaders who I'd like to lead all night long. There was a pretty good mix of songs - slow and fast. There were some songs that really needed the pace picked up. There were familiar songs and songs that were so old even I had not heard them before. Overall, the actual singing portion of the night was fantastic. The building was swelled with song and it was so beautiful and moving. One of the black men who lead a song warned us that he might not lead like most of us were used to because to him the notes on the page were just a suggestion and that got the crowd rolling! 

When the singing was over, snacks were served. I told Erika and Kay that the folks at Mount Carmel might have to go out during the singing and make some more sandwiches because I didn't know if there would be enough food for everyone. As it turns out, in addition to the snack food the ladies at the church provided, the church also had catered fried fish, barbecue, coleslaw, hush puppies and potato salad from The Hickory Barn which is apparently somewhere close by. Y'all that fish was delightful as was the tarter sauce that accompanied it, which is a big plus! All I ate was fish and hush puppies and then went back for more. It was so good! Erika and Kay sampled not only the fish, but also the barbecue and some of the homemade treats from the ladies of the congregation. We ate until we could eat no more and there was still food left over. It was like the miracle of the five loaves and two fish. 

Since first writing this, I have learned from Erika that the folks at Mt. Carmel did in fact go out and order the catering while we were singing. They realized that they did not have enough food to feed all of those who came and placed the order with The Hickory Barn. So, that explains why there was an abundance of food and also why there was a combination of catered food and homemade food. Erika discovered this because her co-worker who had provided us the good directions was actually eating at The Hickory Barn when the catering order came in. It's a small world, y'all. It was so nice of the folks at Mt. Carmel to provide all that food for everyone. 

When we were done eating, we got in the car and made out way back to Huntsville, talking about what a great night it was at Mt. Carmel. We have it two thumbs up, five out of five stars, the best Friday night singing we've ever attended and we have already made plans to be there again next year. 


Erika said...

Oh how I love a good singing! :) It really was so good - I think b/c of the packed house. It was also nice to see a wide range of ages - sometimes I feel like I'm the youngest one there, so it was encouraging to see a lot of people younger than me.

I highly recommend Hickory Barn; it was yummy!
And a big thank you to Mt. Carmel C of C for making sure all us singers were abundantly fed!

I will definitely be there next year.

Candy said...

Your comment about the miracle of the bread and fishes made me giggle. I love when we have 5th Sunday singing at church. I need to get myself to the Dianna singing one day!