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The Prineville Nazarene Church will be presenting its second-annual Christmas cantata next week for the public to enjoy

 - Pictures above are the choir members for the 2018 Christmas Cantata. Last year's choir was strictly members of the Prineville Nazarene Church. This year, the group consists of four different congregations. The Multi-Church Choir will preform "Joy, Joy, Joy" on Dec. 13 and Dec. 15 at Prineville Nazarene Church.

The Prineville Nazarene Church will be presenting its second-annual Christmas cantata next week for the public to enjoy.

On Dec. 13 and 15, "Joy, Joy, Joy" will be filling the sanctuary with voices from a multi-church choir, with one morning and one evening performance.

"There is something really special about Christmas music that pulls people together," said Dixie Parriman, who is directing the choir for the cantata.

She said the practices have gone well so far this season. The cantata has been open to members of other congregations, and they have had four other church congregations represented so far. Although the majority of the choir members have been from the Church of the Nazarene, she is hopeful that the participants from other churches will grow from year to year.

Parriman explained that a cantata consists of choir and narration. There is a little bit of acting, but it is mostly a choir presentation and some narration. The cantata will be a modernized version of the Christmas story.

"It has some fun stuff in it, and it has a song that represents the prophets when they were waiting for the Messiah to be born," she added.

There are approximately 35 participants, including some children and pre-teen members. They began rehearsing in October, meeting every Sunday from 3 to 5 p.m.

Dixie and Pastor Andy Parriman of the Nazarene Church came to Prineville two years ago. Andy grew up in Ohio, and she grew up in Virginia. The met in college in Connecticut and slowly worked their way back west. After living in Idaho and then Tillamook, Oregon, they appreciate the sunshine in Central Oregon.

"I love it here," said Andy. "I could spend the rest of my life here."

They were tired of the rain on the coast, as the family enjoys backpacking, hiking and camping.

"There's a freedom out west that's not out east," added Andy. He said that back east there is a lot of open space, and residents there do not drive any distance to adventure outdoors. "Here, you just drive two hours."

He went on to say that the couple feels like they fit much better in Central Oregon than they did back in the eastern states. Dixie has a BA in music education and taught band in secondary education for a number of years. She was also previously part of a wind and string ensemble.

"In my first life, I was a nurse," said Dixie. "In my second life, I was a music teacher."

Currently, she homeschools her children and volunteers at church. Dixie enjoys directing the cantata each year.

"When we were on the coast was the first time for me to jump into thinking about having a group of people and putting a cantata together," she said. "When I came here, there were more people, and I said, 'Let's try it,' and people jumped right on board."

Andy reflected that he wants this event to be more than a Nazarene Church event.

"We want this to be a place where the community can get together and have a good time together," he said, "a safe place where they can come and explore and a safe place to journey in their faith."

"I think music is so powerful. It pulls people together so you don't have to know each other, but you can make music together, and that is beautiful thing," Dixie concluded. "My plan is definitely to do it again next year, and however many people want to come are certainly welcome."


Second Annual Christmas cantata, "Joy, Joy, Joy" will be at the Prineville Nazarene Church

Address: 780 E First Street, Prineville, OR 97754

For more information: call 541-447-5710

Times: Friday, Dec. 13 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 15 at 10:30 a.m.

All of the public is welcome and the program is free to attend.

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