12 November 2018 | The Lesser Light Collective, a group of 30 Adventist artists which created two groundbreaking musical dramas over the last decade, is disbanding. Jennifer Jill Schwirzer, a well-known Adventist author and key leader in the group announced last week that it has come to “the end of the road.”
The group created and produced “The Lamb Wins” and “The King Dreams,” musical dramas that tell the stories of Daniel and Revelation. Because of the active touring of the team, largely due to the efforts of Lee and Hillary Givhan, who met and married through their involvement in the group, the musicals were presented in more than 30 states across North America. In addition, every teacher of 11th grade Bible in Adventist secondary schools in the denomination’s North American Division has received recordings as part of the Encounter curriculum.
“The end of a road can be beautiful when it spills out onto a lovely meadow, lake, or mountain scene,” Schwirzer wrote on her Facebook page. “The end of a ministry can be beautiful, too, when we carry away precious memories.”
The group got started at the Chestnut Hill Adventist Church in Philadelphia, and is an excellent example of how the arts, fellowship and faith can come together in creative, innovative projects. For many believers, and especially for younger adults, just sitting and listening to sermons heavy with ideas and assertions does not nurture faith. They need to get involved in something which actualizes their skills and brings them into close relationships with others.
“It all started with an idea God whispered to me during my devotions one day,” remembers Schwirzer. “Why not turn the Book of Revelation into a collection of songs?” She has written a memoir of her 15 years in Philadelphia, tentatively called “Philly and Me.” It should be published next year. Watch Adventist Today for an announcement.
The Lesser Light Collective “never became a household name,” wrote Schwirzer, “but it gave young people a first shot at music ministry. It never won a Grammy, but angels did backflips over the songs. It never made millions, but it kept food on some tables and fed many with rich spiritual food. And most of all, it bound hearts together in a common endeavor to share the love of God through the arts. We’re at the end of the road, but when we reflect on how God led, all we see is beauty.”
The CDs continue to be sold, as well as a coloring book, “Vibrant Visions.” There is a documentary chronicling the project which can be seen on YouTube, as well as a video of the kickoff concert of “The King Dreams.”
The CDs and book can be obtained here.
The documentary and the video of the first production of “The King Dreams” are available below.
The video of the concert is here.