1 March 2023

Behind the mic: Sing to the Lord with the ISS

George Tanton

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A photo of Dorothy Nacekievill wearing Salvation Army uniform

Dorothy Nancekievill, leader of the International Staff Songsters (ISS), talks to George Tanton about producing Sing to the Lord with the ISS for Salvationist Radio.

How did the show come about?

I was asked to organise some vocal works for Fortress Radio. I wanted to make a monthly programme and, rather than using members of the ISS to present, I asked their families and friends. About 14 people put themselves forward and chose songs from the ISS’s vast repertoire of nearly 700 songs.

What is your role?

I choose the presenters, advise if necessary, and listen to everything before it’s signed off. During the Covid-19 lockdowns, I was very aware of the ISS’s ministry; it supported people during times of great sadness and influenced them in times of joy. The motivation was to continue that ministry.

Do you have a favourite song or genre that’s been featured?

It depends on the mood I’m in, but I love uplifting choral and accompanied music. The programme is a platform for a whole variety of things.

People have chosen older songs, newer songs, serious songs and light-hearted songs. Interestingly, one piece that’s regularly chosen is ‘Count Your Blessings’. It’s a great toe-tapping number, but that possibly reflects people’s underlying anxieties about the world.

How effective is radio in communicating the gospel?

The Covid-19 lockdowns were awful in lots of ways, but we learnt lessons through them. We acknowledged the importance of being able to effectively reach people.

A lot of people lost confidence and felt they could no longer attend meetings after the lifting of restrictions. However, the radio programme allows the Army to share love, hope and redemption with people who may be housebound or can’t get to church regularly.

We can all see God differently and for many of us it’s through music. I strongly advocate the sung word because it connects with people, particularly if they are familiar with the lyrics.

Written by

George Tanton

George Tanton

Editorial Assistant

Salvationist Radio: What's on

Sing to the Lord with the ISS is on the first Sunday of each month from 5pm.


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