Over the Years: New Student Welcome Night

6 08 2008

The new school year at Cal is right around the corner.  For us, that translates into getting geared up and preparing for the biggest event of Gracepoint Fellowship Church‘s college department calendar: New Student Welcome Night (NSWN).  

As I was talking with Jason Tarn yesterday, we realized that this upcoming NSWN will mark the 10th year that I’ve done the music for the event.  My first time was when I was a 4th year at Cal.  In terms of the music I don’t remember that much.  I do remember that I had both my guitars (fender strat and a Taylor 614ce) that night, and that I broke strings on both the guitars during the praise set.  Boy, was I nervous…

That was in 2050 VLSB (Valley Life Sciences Building), kind of a “home” for me since that was the first place I led worship for our college department Bible studies.  We’ve since moved to Wheeler, and now Pauley Ballroom for this year.  And every year, it’s such a wonderful time to see so many young students coming to find out about our group, taking the opportunity to hear the message of the gospel, many for the first time.  It could even be their first step toward crossing the line of faith. 

I went over to Jeannie Lee’s office to share with her the realization that a decade has gone by, and I’m still doing NSWN. (Patrick and Jeannie Lee were the senior class directors when I was a senior way back when.) We laughed and joked about how old we’re getting…

After 10 years, we laugh. Another 10 years, we’ll cry…

C’mon, you vocalists. We need to raise up worship leaders. <sigh>

James Kim
Gracepoint Fellowship Church – Worship Director

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6 responses

6 08 2008
eileen

10 years?!? Oh my! 10 years ago I got my driver’s license 🙂

A funny moment at Centrifuge – Ben Koo is prepping the students right before the night begins. James, our still ultra cool daddy of Jesse, and band listening in.

Elise Koo (to the best of my memory): “James? I’m .. I’m sorry…Not that I don’t trust you… but some of the youth have expressed concern…. with what you’re wearing.”

Just 10 minutes before I had asked him if that’s what he’s wearing. Trust me, some $1.99 Korean market slippers would’ve topped off the ahjushee look!

6 08 2008
Paul Chen

Hey I was there 10 years ago with James…

But hey I’d say I am proud of the fellow keyboardists though, finally after 10 years we’ve got some. But if we keep planting churches we’d better raise up some more, fast! 🙂

Oh that Taylor 614ce. That was the best of all I’ve heard. Man, if I can just listen to its pristine sound once more, as I pluck the strings with my fingers, man they don’t make Taylors the way they used to,

7 08 2008
DL

haha, 10 years is a loooong time. amazing!

i love the story that’s told every year after each welcome night, which goes something this like:

right after the program, many freshmen are in awe of james who has the aura of ‘Cool’ about him especially after leading the time of rocking praise. that is until of course, they actually meet him in person, talk to him for a few minutes, and find out how what an ‘interesting’ guy he is to say the least.

7 08 2008
KJ

Wow… happy 10th anniversary James. You still definitely have that “cool” aura about you, but I think you should put those chip bags and ice cream cartons aside if you want to maintain the undergrad look. Come on, it’s for ministry. If that’s not enough motivation, I don’t know what is!

8 08 2008
Daniel

10 years! wow, has it been that long? my first time ever playing the drums for church was also the NSWN of my soph year, 10 years ago. and every NSWN is still an unique and exciting adventure as we see how God works among a new crop of college students. i’ll keep playing as long as my arms don’t fall off and i don’t go deaf (although after this Saturday’s Centrifuge event by our Element Youth Group, i think my hearing’s life-span got shortened by about 20 years).

3 09 2008
Carmen

10 years ago I was a freshmen and attended my first New Student Welcome Night. James led us into a prayer that no one understood what he was mumbling through… Now I marvel how he leads the congregation with loud and confident prayers and helping us to reflect and pause before entering worship.

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