High School Worship Band Performs in Philadelphia


Elijah Bergey

Momentum Youth Worship Band performing at International Christian High School, photo taken March 9, 2022

After hours of practice and hard work, members of a high school worship band were given an incredible opportunity. In the year 2020, Darla Mulhall, the music director at First Baptist Church of Perkasie, opened a worship training session for high school students. The band consists of 14 local, motivated, musically gifted high school students who are part of the youth group at First Baptist Church. After many sessions, they were given their first opportunity to perform. The band practiced on Monday afternoons in February and March, learning harmonies, and memorizing music to prepare for the performance. On March 9, 2022, the Momentum Worship Band led students from the International Christian High School in Philadelphia in worship.

ICHS is made up of approximately 30 percent of international students from different countries and 70 percent from the local area. The goal of ICHS is to provide “a quality Christian education for the under-served youth of Philadelphia and its surrounding areas”. Students from all over the world come to this school, so there are many diverse backgrounds. Many of them have difficult home lives and lack many things that others take for granted.

First Baptist Church is very blessed to have a variety of instruments and technical equipment needed to have a band. The purpose of this trip was not to go and show off musical talents, but instead to encourage the students there who may not have the opportunity to praise God in a concert-like setting with lights and energy. The Momentum Band wanted the students at ICHS to know that there are people who care for them as well as the teachers who work hard to give these underprivileged students a great education and prepare them for the future. Klay Edsall, the drummer, said that his favorite part of the trip was “being able to watch others in a different community worship the same God that I do.”

One word to describe the kids in this band would be uncommon. None of them ever look for self-attention both on and off the stage. They constantly put others before themselves. They made an effort to engage with the students, learn their names, and find common interests. For many of them, it was their first performance in front of an audience, but the smiles and energy from the audience immediately took nerves away. Adah Weigner, one of the lead singers, said, “it was so special to worship with the teens and it helped grow my confidence in performing”. After the band’s first performance, they have grown as musicians and became closer than before.

By the end of the day, the director of ICHS said he would love to have the band back again to encourage the students and continue to build relationships that were started just this week. The Momentum Worship Band hopes to perform at more schools throughout the end of this school year and will continue to improve their performing abilities.