12 Jan


Judy Wills

I’ve mentioned before that shortly after we moved to Florida, we joined the church where we now worship.  And within six months of that time, I became the church secretary.

Within a year, two of our pastors had left for other churches – our Minister of Music and our Youth Pastor.  Our current Minister of Music, Rick, came to us within a year of that time.


One day he came to me with an idea of having the congregation “vote on” or suggest their top 10 favorite hymns, and we would present the “winners” one Sunday at a time, for 10 Sundays.  He would give the background of the hymn, i.e. when it was written, who wrote it, if there was any kind of story or history behind the writing or composing of that hymn, and then give the title of the hymn, and we would sing it.

And so we put together an insert to the bulletin for several Sundays, asking the congregation to give us their favorite hymn titles.  Rick then compiled the list of those hymns submitted, and came up with the final 10 favorites.  The list of favorites was quite extensive.

And then he gave me a threat – “If you tell ANYONE what the favorites are, I will do you bodily harm!!”  And then we both laughed.  But it gave me a good reason to NOT tell anyone what the finalists were.  And I did have several people ask me if I knew what the top 10 were.  Of course!  I said.  But Rick threatened me with bodily harm if I spilled the beans!

I found it fun, and the congregation thoroughly enjoyed finding out, Sunday by Sunday, something about the hymns we were singing.  That always seems to mean more when we sing a song, and know the history behind it.  And Rick always told the history of the hymn before he announced the title. 

I must admit that I don’t remember in what order those hymns were, but Rick started with number 10, and worked his way up to number one – one each Sunday.

That final Sunday was full of suspense.  And Rick really did it up right.  He began with, “the Number One Hymn chosen by most of you…well, could it be Jesus Loves Me?”  I heard a collective “ohh” from the congregation.  

“Or could it be How Great Thou Art?”  Another collective “ohh” from the congregation.

But then he said. “Or could it be Amazing Grace?”  The collective “ohh” was louder this time.  And then he began telling the story/history of a song, and finally said, “Yes, it is Amazing Grace.”  I could almost hear a collective chuckle from the congregation.  

It was a fun – and informative – time for our congregation.  So many of the songs we sing are just songs we sing.  This gave us some background into how and why composers and song-writers do what they do.  The inspiration behind the songs we do sing.  It really brings meaning to the music we sing.

To God Be The Glory

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

3 Responses to “NAME THAT TUNE”

  1. Onisha Ellis January 20, 2020 at 2:21 pm #

    I would have enjoyed this game! I love each of the songs.


  2. Richard Steele January 15, 2020 at 11:01 am #

    Thanks for reminding me of an amazing journey our church took involving worship and the wonder of the church gathering to sing His glorious praise! And NO I wouldn’t have done bodily harm to my favorite secretary!!!!


  3. divoran09 January 12, 2020 at 5:16 pm #

    loved it

    Liked by 1 person

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