McDaniel College used to have a relationship with the United Methodist Church; some graduating students went on to become preachers. When that link was broken around 30 years ago, a spiritual void was left within the campus community. Even the position of "college chaplain" was dissolved.

In the fall of 1994, Dr. Margaret Boudreaux, Music Dept. Chairwoman and the Director of the College Choir, approached Eric B. Byrd about starting a gospel choir. Byrd had just graduated from Western Maryland College (now McDaniel College) in 1993 with a music degree. After repeated denials, Byrd finally relented and agreed to start a new 1 credit college course entitled Gospel Choir. The objective of the class is to teach spirituals, traditional and contemporary Black Gospel Music. The first rehearsal was held in the Fall of 1994 with 17 singers; as of the Spring of 2004, the choir has 80+ members. (next)


United Methodist Church

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