500 Churches, 500 Hymns, 5 days, 25,000 notes!

Over 30 members of the choir of St John the Baptist Church Keynsham are tackling an ambitious fundraising challenge that will see them sing a hymn at 500 of the 569 churches in the Diocese of Bath and Wells over a five day period.

Their mammoth challenge is taking place between Wednesday 29th October (10am) and Sunday 2nd November (5pm).

The Bishop of Bath and Wells, Right Reverend Peter Hancock wished the choir well in their attempt and through his chaplain has offered the choir the opportunity to sing in the chapel in his palace.

The choir began their challenge at 10.00am on Wednesday 29th October at Wells Cathedral before moving across to the chapel in the adjacent Bishop’s Palace by invitation of the Bishop at approximately 10.45am. The challenge will finish at their home church of St John the Baptist Keynsham at approximately 5pm on Sunday 2nd November.

Member of the choir and one of the event organisers, Dan Crouch said, ‘We are fundraising to subsidise the cost of our 2015 tour to Holland for the children in our choir, and also to support the fund for church growth which provides support for a range of projects across the diocese. We wanted to do something that would capture people’s imagination and had not been done before. We also wanted to address the challenge of raising funds by doing something that would be fun and would build a sense of community among our members.’

St John’s Choir is a traditional mixed voice choir of around 40 singers who range in age from 7 to 89. They will be travelling across the Diocese of Bath and Wells in teams of 4-6 singing a hymn, praying for the church and community and leaving a prayer card. They will also take a photograph of themselves at the church, some of which will be shared over social media.

The choir will cover many miles across the south west in the course of their challenge. The diocese stretches from Exmoor in the east to Frome in the west and from Portishead in the north to Illminster in the south. Groups will need to cover about five churches an hour and in the course of the challenge they will sing in excess of 25,000 notes!

If you want to know more about the choir or would like to sponsor them please email:  500churches or follow their progress on twitter @500_Challenge.

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