Oddwalk Ministries

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Ongoing Creation

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The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: 306 God is the sovereign master of his plan. But to carry it out he also makes use of his creatures’ co-operation. This use is not a sign of weakness, but rather a token of almighty God’s greatness and goodness. For God grants his creatures not only their…

Joy at NPM

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Hi all, Orin here, continuing his usual busy summer of acronyms: a couple weeks ago was YSP, this week is the annual convention for NPM, National Association of Pastoral Musicians.  (Next week is another YNIA which Shannon and I will do together, Shannon already told you about one of those.) Anyway, yesterday was travel day, which is why this Jesus-Justice-Joy post is a day later than usual.

Just as YSP brought me a certain joy (which a tired me told you a tiny bit about in a video), every year NPM brings me a joy as well. While of course I am a church music director in addition to my Oddwalk fun, I’m here this week also as a composer of music for the Church as well.

Here’s a photo from the exhibit hall last night of a book from GIA that both Shannon and I have songs published in, called Crossgeneration.

 

Knowing it’s selfish mostly, it does bring me a bit of joy to see that music that I and Shannon have written in print – but beyond my own ego, part of that joy is it being still available to the wider Church to help them pray in song. (I hope to sneak photos of other octavos in print with WLP and OCP later today!)

Another joy this week is being able to reconnect in person with so many other composers I have gotten to know over recent years. There is a certain fellowship and camaraderie in that particular group of people, with a particular ministry to and for the Church.  Here are a few of us out to dinner last night, photo credit to Kate Basi.

 

Sharp eyes will see my wife Erin in the photo. Another joy is being able to spend a chunk of this week with her, taking a little personal time here and there to just be us, away from home and most of the responsibilities and worries there.

All of these joys are rooted in Christ and my faith in him.  It is Christ who gathers, who forms community, and gives us talents to praise him in song.  St. Augustine purportedly once said that “The one who sings prays twice.”  If so – and I think that’s right – there’s a whole lotta prayin’ goin’ on in Cincinnati this week at NPM.  Thanks for reading!  —Orin

Are you a recognizable Christian?

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As we here at Oddwalk continue along our journey of more intentional blogging, it’s my (Orin’s) turn to share a bit about the second word of our tagline, “Justice.” Though that tag line has only accompanied us for some 16 or so months now, justice has always been an important piece of who we are…

Oddwalk at NCCYM 2016

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img_0394Where will you find us at NCCYM? Just check our handy guide:

— 12/1 3:15pm – Netsourcing session, music & liturgy N09
— 12/1 7:00pm – National Youth Ministry Award introduction
— 12/2 8:00pm – Youth Ministry Extravaganza
— 12/3 8:00am – Music Ministry for Daily Mass
— 12/3 2:15pm – Part of Great Ideas workshop

And of course in the exhibit hall when it’s open. Check your program books for more details. Hope to say hi to many friends old and new!

Playing Catchup

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Hey folks – just a few updates for you, exciting things have been happening!

Any Given Sunday – Shannon had a reflection there recently for Divine Mercy Sunday, and Orin will in a couple weeks. Check out Shannon’s here.

Another Publication! – Orin has another piece in print at WLP, “The Lord Is My Shepherd” – a choral setting of Psalm 23 he wrote for his last Shrine mass about 3 years ago. Check out the sample score and listen to a bit of audio here.

Week of the Young Child Concert – For the 10th anniversary of this celebration, Orin joined Shannon and Chris & Isaiah Korte for a program in Kirksville MO, and we all were featured on the local news! Watch below.

Songs We Should Never Record – NCCYM 2014

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songsweshouldneverrecordHello everybody! Boy, did we have a blast at NCCYM in San Antonio this past weekend – we hope you did too. We’re happy to make available to our visitors, absolutely free, various versions of our small piece of the Friday Night Youth Ministry Extravaganza, “Songs We Should Never Record.” Many people have asked us about video, audio, or lyrics – and they’re all here!

First, the video:

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And, an mp3 you are free to download!
♫ SongsWeShouldNeverRecord.mp3 ♫
(use the pic above for artwork – click to enlarge – if you like!)

And a pdf with all the lyrics and a few of the images from the show: songsweshouldneverrecord.pdf

The mp3 is also out on the pOddcast now, if you are a subscriber!

We also want to add a special word of thanks to our friend Mike Kivett, who penned the words to “There They Go, Lord.” Mike is a great live audio technician, he helped us with our first couple self-produced CDs, and most importantly is an all around good egg. When he heard some our silly stuff we were asking him to record, he shared with us his little creation, and we’re certainly glad he did. Thanks, Mike!

And thanks as well to the NFCYM for a great conference as always, and great NCYCs the other years. See you next fall in Indy!


PS – A couple people have asked us about the lyrics to the “Stand By Your Man” parody we sang as part of the finale of the night. Those words were written by Bob Rice, here they are:

Sometimes its hard to be a pastor,
Caring for all those ministries.
Absolving all those sins, the roof is caving in,
And the youth room needs a 55 inch flat screen high definition TV.

Stand by your man,
Give him an ear to listen.
It’s hard, he’s always giving,
And you are kind of needy.
Stand by your man,
And even if he’s awkward,
Make him look as cool as you can,
Baby! Stand by your man.

We Will Miss You, Colette – Well Done, Good and Faithful Servant

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Colette

Colette and Shannon

Colette Kennett passed away yesterday. She was a great friend and mentor for me, especially as a professional youth minister. As I have said to many other people, there is no way that I become a youth minister (or at least a good one, hopefully) without first crossing paths with Colette.  She was a giant in youth ministry, but she was much more than that.  She was also a giant in kindness, friendship, compassion, encouragement, empowerment, and joy.  When she told you to “make it a great day”, she truly believed that you had the capability to do that.  She believed in people so much, that it often made her seem naïve and gullible.  While those things might have been true to some extent, all of it stemmed from this ability she had to see the very best in everyone and give them the benefit of the doubt.  She beat back cynicism and hatred with light and love.  Additionally, she was always laser focused on the people she was with, to the point that you felt somehow like you were part of her inner circle. It sounds silly, but that’s really how it felt. The truth is, she made everyone feel that way.  Personally, for me, I can’t tell you how often she encouraged me as a youth minister, musician, husband, and father. She believed in my potential, and made me feel like I could do anything.

As for youth ministry, speaking as former CYO teen, she and her teams created a youth ministry world that helped us live out the ideals and challenges she embodied.  I challenge you to find a more active, committed, and enthusiastic diocesan youth ministry than the one she set up.  For instance: because the biggest venue in our rural diocese could only handle around 600 people, the attendance at our annual Diocesan CYO Convention had to be regulated.  Parishes could only bring six teens, since nearly every diocesan parish brought a group.  There was so much anticipation about these events that arguments broke out in many of these parishes each year when, inevitably, some teens that wanted to go, could not.  The attendance at these conventions could have easily doubled.  It was pretty remarkable for our rural diocese.  In addition to a great convention, she encouraged and facilitated hundreds of service projects, sporting events, dances, social gatherings, prayer services, and concerts.  She facilitated a diocesan-level teen leadership council that rivaled none.  Those teens worked hard, facilitated and planned events, and would have done anything for Colette.

I could say much more, but I’ll simply say this: I miss you, Colette, and promise to now work even harder to carry your spirit and joy with me everywhere I go.

Well done, good and faithful servant.

-Shannon

 

It’s our 10th Oddiversary!

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Such Decade

SUCH DECADE

Hello everyone! Today, October 24, 2014, is the 10th anniversary of the very first Oddwalk performance!

As we said on our 5th anniversary, “Whenever Orin and Shannon are asked about Oddwalk’s origins, how we met, etc., we find ourselves using language as if we’re talking about a wedding or a marriage.  While that analogy is certainly more different than it is like, Oddwalk is certainly about relationship and relationships, and it is a day to celebrate just that!”

To celebrate this milestone,  we’ve put together a brief pOddcast from that very first Oddwalk show for the diocese of New Ulm, Minnesota. You can listen to it here, on our pOddcast page, via iTunes, etc.  You’ll here early versions of your favorite Oddwalk songs, snippets of stories, watching the 2014 world series, and a whole lot more!  Maybe you’ll discover, as we did: the more things change the more things stay the same!


Play now: 10th Oddiversary Podcast!
Play


Additionally, on our Facebook page for the last 10 days, we’ve been posting highlights of the last decade – check those out, and “like” us over there!

Thanks for the opportunities, everyone, to travel as much as we have and to offer our talents and services for the building of the Kingdom.  Looking forward to another great 10 years, maybe more!

 

Fly High, Super Sam

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Super Sam

Hello everyone.  Shannon here.  As many of you already know by now, our buddy Super Sam Santhuff passed away this past Friday, September 19th.  You may remember Sam from this blog post from this past May:

http://oddwalkministries.com/oddblog/2014/05/11/super-sam-his-light/

This morning, on a Facebook page dedicated to Sam, I shared the following reflection, which Orin has encouraged me to share here:

Yesterday, my wife Erin and I were given the great privilege of singing this song at Super Sam’s funeral. Thanks so much to Matt (Dad) and Cassie (Mom) for this amazing opportunity. It was truly an honor.

In the weeks following Cassie’s post in March revealing that Sam’s cancer had returned, I, like the rest of you, was trying to focus my prayer. I, of course, believe in a God who works miracles, but I also knew where this road could lead. To be grounded, but believe that, with God, anything is possible, is always a weird place to be. This lead me to seek guidance in scripture, and in particular, the first part of the Gospel of John, which was speaking of Jesus, the Word. Three things jumped out at me. 1. Jesus was, is, and always will be. 2. None of the life around us came to be without Jesus. 3. The Light (Jesus) shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. This was the confidence in faith that I was looking for. I was reminded that no matter where Sam’s journey led, Jesus would be present through it all. While I, of course, prayed fervently for Sam’s complete healing, I knew that no darkness, no suffering, no death could ever extinguish the light of Jesus. This is where the song came from. I was not looking to write a tribute to Sam. I was looking for a way to pray about and for Sam.

Sam reflected (and continues to reflect) God’s light for all of us. Even in his death, Sam is proving that no darkness can ever shut out God’s light. Look at what he has inspired! Look how many lives he touched! Look at how a little boy who exuded goodness was able to capture the hearts of so many! Could we not do the same? Many of us carry with us attitudes of cynicism, anger, mistrust, polarization, and selfishness. Sam carried none of those. Sam carried God’s light, not his own, which is what drew us so closely to him. Imagine the impact we could have on our communities and the rest of the world if we chose to do the same.

Here is the song, as posted on Soundcloud:

http://soundcloud.com/oddwalk/his-light

 

Super Sam – His Light

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Hello everyone, and thanks for visiting Oddwalk’s “Super Sam” page. As part of his full-time parish position, Oddwalk founding member, Shannon Cerneka, serves St. Peter School in Fulton, MO as a music teacher. One of Shannon’s kindergarten students, a little boy named Sam is currently battling a very rare and very aggressive childhood cancer called…

Shannon’s Top Ten of 2011

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Well, here ends another great year for Oddwalk Ministries. We had the opportunity to bring what we do to a lot of great places: Granite City, IL – Toledo, Ohio – Mascoutah, IL – Breese, IL – Belleville, IL – Davenport, IA – Washington DC – Buffalo, NY – Fairview Heights, IL – Hazelwood, MO…