Spring 2022 Orientation

On the 4th, there was an orientation for this Spring Quarter.

In addition to the subject introduction, through this orientation, Jubilee School Director Kwon shared with the students in detail the direction of the school’s development for the next 1 or 2 years.

There were two key points. The first was ‘Applied Christian Music’ and the second was ‘Summer Songwriting Camp’.

Through this orientation, Jubilee School gave students an accurate understanding of ‘Applied Music’ and explained to them what ‘Applied Christian Music’ that Jubilee School aims for and how education is conducted.

In addition, we had time to introduce the more advanced ‘Songwriting Camp’.

Details can be found in the distributed brochure.

The 2022 Winter Quarter has been successfully completed.

On March 22nd, the 2022 Winter Quarter was successfully completed.

At the same time, the Office of Student Affairs made a surprising announcement. According to the Office of Student Affairs, students’ class satisfaction and academic achievement, based on the professor’s evaluation report, recorded an all-time high this winter quarter.

In particular, some of the theoretical subjects that introduced new teaching methods showed outstanding results.

The professors in charge of the theory course applied a teaching method that combines the theory of cognitive science in this winter quarter so that students can effectively acquire music theories.

The core of the new teaching method they applied is ‘output-practice’ and ‘time-interval’. ‘Output-practice’ is to get students to use the theory they have learned. To this end, the faculty allowed students to take time to teach the theory they had learned to others. In addition, the professors applied the ‘pomodoro’ technique to maximize the ‘first effect’ and ‘latest effect’ to maximize the students’ concentration.

This teaching method aims to study in a way that suits the mechanisms of the brain.

This has been talked about since last year’s teaching seminar. The professors designed the class so that it can be applied to the actual class and applied it this time. And that effort paid off well.

We would like to express my gratitude to the professors who worked hard and to the students who did their best to participate in the study.

Singing a New Song: Instructions from the Psalms – Dr. Merril Smoak

Several times in the Psalms we find the admonition to “sing a new song.” As worship leaders and church musicians this should immediately get our attention. We are always looking for a new song to learn and then teach to our congregations. Let’s examine these references to “singing a new song” found in the songbook of the ancient Hebrews.

Psalm 33:3
Sing to him [God] a new song;
     play skillfully on the strings, with loud shouts.

Psalm 96:1
Oh sing to the Lord a new song;
     sing to the Lord, all the earth!

Psalm 98:1
Oh sing to the Lord a new song,
     for he has done marvelous things!

Psalm 144:9
I will sing a new song to you, O God;
     upon a ten-stringed harp I will play to you [God],

Psalm 149:1
Praise the Lord!
Sing to the Lord a new song,
     his praise in the assembly of the godly!

Here are 10 things we learn about music and worship from examining these verses:

  • Sing! Throughout the Psalms we find references to singing. God has created human beings with the physical ability to sing. With our own bodies we create music. We call this singing.
  • These verses teach us that our singing is to have a purposeful direction. We are to sing directly to the LORD. Our physical cognitive process (our minds) enable us to lift our singing voices up to God as praise and worship.
  • We are directed to sing a “new song” to the LORD. What does this mean? We will discuss this in detail below.
  • Musical instruments are a part of singing a new song to the LORD.
  • Loud shouts of joy are a part of singing a new song to the LORD.
  • “All the earth” is to sing to the LORD. This includes humans and all of God’s creation (rivers, mountains, tress, etc.).
  • We sing to the LORD because “he has done marvelous things!”
  • Instrumentalists play their instruments and make music to the LORD.
  • Singing a new song to the LORD is synonymous with praising the LORD.
  • We are to sing a new song to the LORD with other people who love the LORD. We do this each Sunday morning when we come together to worship the LORD.

Now, what does it mean to “sing a new song?” Here are four suggestions to consider:

  • Yes, obviously it can mean to write new words and compose new melodies to form a brand new song. This has happened throughout Christian history and it must continue today. We always need new songs of praise and worship to express our love for God, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The writer of Lamentations helps us with this understanding:
    The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
              his mercies never come to an end;
    they are new every morning;
         great is your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)
  • It could also simply mean that the words and music are new to the singers. The singers have found a song that was previously written and it is new to them. This happens all the time. As Christians we have a rich heritage of hymns and songs that have been written in the past by persons who have loved the LORD. Let’s keep on looking for that one special song to express our love for the LORD.
  • Non-Christians and new Believers could all of a sudden decide to sing the songs of Yahweh. Yes! This is wonderful! Non-Christians are being prompted by the Holy Spirit to become believers in Jesus. As they experience singing new songs about God’s love for them they will soon become followers of Jesus. New Believers must sing new songs about forgiveness of sins and the joy of their salvation because of Jesus’ death on the cross. This reminds us of the reference to singing a new song in John’s Revelation:
    And they sang a new song, saying,
    Worthy are you to take the scroll
         and to open its seals,
    for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God
         from every tribe and language and people and nation,
         (Revelation 5:9)
  • Here is one last possibility about the meaning of singing a new song. There are many worship songs that we have been singing for many years. The words and melody are very familiar. Then, all of a sudden while singing one of these songs a particular word or phrase jumps out at us with a fresh, new understanding. We are now singing this familiar song as a new song. This reminds us of Paul’s instructions to the church in Corinth:
    What am I to do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will pray with my mind [understanding] also; I will sing praise with my spirit, but I will sing with my mind [understanding] also.
         (1 Corinthians 14:15)

There is one more reference to singing a new song in the Psalms.

Psalm 40:3
He put a new song in my mouth,
     a song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear,
     and put their trust in the Lord.

This is amazing! God himself puts a new song in our mouths and we lift this new song back to God as a new song of praise! AND (!) because of this new song many people will see and fear the LORD and put their trust in the LORD! The singing of this new song will lead to new Believers!

Amen! Let’s continue to lift new songs unto the LORD!

– Dr. Merril Smoak

About Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, in the United States, holiday (third Monday in January) honouring the achievements of Martin Luther King, Jr. A Baptist minister who advocated the use of nonviolent means to end racial segregation, he first came to national prominence during a bus boycott by African Americans in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1955. He founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957 and led the 1963 March on Washington.

The most influential of African American civil rights leaders during the 1960s, he was instrumental in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed discrimination in public accommodations, facilities, and employment, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. King was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1964. He was assassinated on April 4, 1968.

Always Singing – A Note from Dr. Merril Smoak about Music & Worship

Christians Musicians Are Always Giving Thanks

Christian musicians are always looking for scripture verses that mention music and singing.  These verses guide us in our song selection and deepen our understanding of how to lead others in worship.  In the New Testament, we find two examples of these selected Bible verses:  Ephesians 5:15-20 and Colossians 3:15-17.  These two well-known passages mention the familiar “psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs” of the first century Christian church.  These verses are singularly important because they teach us that singing was an important part of early Christian worship. 

Yes, singing is an important part of our Sunday worship, but as we read and study Ephesians 5:15-20 and Colossians 3:15-17 other themes emerge that must impact our worship leadership.  Note these phrases:

         “always giving thanks”       Ephesians 5:20

         “And be thankful”               Colossians 3:15

         “with gratitude”                  Colossians 3:16

         “giving thanks”                   Colossians 3:17

In these verses Paul reminds us of the link between singing and giving thanks that was already established in the Old Testament:

         “It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
         to sing praises to your name, O Most High
”          Psalm 92:1

As we sing together during times of worship we are giving thanks.  As we pray we are giving thanks.  As Christians, we live a life of everyday giving thanks to God for his blessings, mercy, and grace.  We continually give thanks to God for his Son Jesus and the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives.  Thanks be to God!

Let’s take a closer look at Paul’s teachings on “giving thanks” in these verses from Ephesians and Colossians.  Here is Ephesians 5:19-20

        “Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Notice that the phrase “always giving thanks” is a continuation of the sentence “Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord.”  In verse 20 Paul answers three questions:           

To whom do we give thanks?         “to God”

For what do we give thanks?          “for everything”

How do we give thanks?                “in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ”

We give thanks to God for everything in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ!  Amen!

Here is Colossians 3:16b-17

       “…singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.  And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”

Again Paul links “singing” with “gratitude” (giving thanks).  He then reminds us that our spoken words and our actions are all to be done in the name of the Lord Jesus as we give thanks to God through Jesus.

On November 25 of this year, we will celebrate a national holiday called Thanksgiving Day.  As Christians, we understand that setting aside one day per year to give thanks is certainly not enough!  Every moment of every day we give thanks to God for our very breath and our new life in Christ Jesus.

Here are the words to one of my favorite closing worship songs:

         Giving thanks, giving thanks,
         To God through Christ our Lord.
         Giving thanks, giving thanks,
         To God through Christ our Lord.

Christian musicians and worship leaders always remember to live a life of daily giving thanks as you prepare to lead your people in worship by singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs.  Thanks be to God!

A Brief History of Veteran’s Day

In 1918, on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, an armistice was declared between the Allied nations and Germany in World War I.

Just over 116,000 Americans died in World War I, defending the lives and freedom of our European allies.

The following year, U.S. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration to honor the soldiers who fought in that war. The day was originally known as Armistice Day.

November 11th became a federal holiday in the United States in 1938. In the aftermath of World War II and the Korean War, the holiday became known as Veterans Day.

It is estimated that more than 1 million Americans have died in all U.S. wars. The effects of PTSD are being widely recognized every day. According to a report by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, an average of 20 veterans die per day from suicide.

Today, there is a projected total of 1.3 million active duty service men and women in the U.S. military, with an additional 800,000 serving in reserve components.

While women have played a pivotal role in all wars dating back to the Revolutionary War, it was in 2013 when the military’s ban on women serving in combat was lifted. About one in every five active duty military today are women, equal to approximately 250,000 today.

Today there are approximately 21 million veterans alive in the U.S.

On the first Armistice Day, the nationwide celebration included parades, public meetings and a two-minute suspension of business at 11 a.m.

The first celebration using the term Veterans Day occurred in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1947. This “National Veterans Day” celebration included a parade and other festivities, to honor all veterans.

From “Building Homes for Heroes”

2021 Fall Quarter Orientation

On Friday, September 14th, there was the 2021 Fall Quarter Orientation.

The schedule for this fall quarter, which students must be aware of in relation to classes, is as follows.

  1. September 17 – Last day to register
  2. September 23 – Fall quarter begins (first day of classes) / Add/Drop course without charge begins
  3. September 29 – Last day to add/drop courses without charge
  4. September 30 – Late add/drop courses with fee begins
  5. October 6 – Last day to add courses with fee
  6. October 13 – Last day to drop courses with fee / Last day to apply for Fall quarter Leave of Absence
  7. December 13 – Last day of classes
  8. December 14 to 17 -Final exam period
  9. December 17 – Fall quarter ends

The orientation was conducted with director Kwon’s warm greetings to the students, the representative professor’s advice on academic achievement, the testimonies of alumni, and a special song by the winner of last summer’s song camp.

We hope this fall quarter will also become a Jubilee School that can fully fulfill the mission of music education in God.

This summer’s quarter’s academic achievement hits the top.

The summer quarter ended with the final exam period on September 9, and as we saw in the mood of the staff and student results, this quarter has been quite successful.
Students’ academic achievement is the highest we have seen compared to all other school quarters.

The most significant achievement we had was the combined teaching method of group lectures and one-on-one advising or study sessions. This method is a hybrid method in which both professors and students are satisfied because the students get the chance to understand the lessons better, and lecturers get personal feedback from each student.

The one-on-one and group lecture hybrid teaching was easier to set up because we moved to online studies.  However, even if the offline class is in effect next year, we will still use online studies to accommodate some students and hold more one-on-one advising sessions.

In addition, we expect online classes to improve for the remaining period of the year. Therefore, we have high hopes for student performance and satisfaction.

2021 Summer Song Camp Well Done.

Summer Song Camp, which started on July 2, ended successfully on July 30.

Because the summer Song Camp was online, we faced unexpected difficulties even though we pushed to optimize the camp activities. However, with the patience and unity of all the staff and participants, our school could complete the songwriting camp safely and successfully.

The winner of this Song Camp came out of the graduates (we omitted his name because of his privacy). The following is the winner’s impression of this year’s victory.

“I am a person who lacks much music, so I can’t believe this win if the factor that was able to win is the content of the lyrics and the musical atmosphere that matched it well. My evaluation of musical technique is intermediate. However, many colleagues who participated with the judges gave an excellent evaluation of the lyrics. I wrote such lyrics because of meditation and application of the Bible, which I did for 30 minutes every morning. In the end, it was the result of the grace that came from my relationship with God.”

The winner will be allowed to showcase the album production fee and showcase.

Spring Quarter is Over

The Spring 2021 Quarter ended yesterday on June 23.

Faculty members said that the rough results of the last week’s final exams showed the students’ high academic achievement during the spring quarter. The high academic performance allowed school authorities to know that the online class system implemented last year is now fully established.

The advantage of online classes is that students can access the same content repeatedly anytime, anywhere. Consequently, we could correlate that frequent revision of lessons and lectures boosted academic achievement; students also mentioned this as the most significant advantage of online classes.

However, there are also some disadvantages. In particular, the less proficient in I.T. a lecturer is, the more time it takes to prepare for the class. From the professor’s point of view, the preparation time increased for each lecture. In the music practice class, all the professors had to get help constantly from the school’s media support department because the specificity of each music class made it challenging to transition without resetting the class layout.

Since we expect on-site classes to begin, possibly, from next year, the school authorities are going through meetings to smoothen these ridges. Therefore, we expect a merge that combines online and offline classes advantages to provide optimal studies.

The school gives utmost thanks and glory to God for the successful closing of this year’s Spring Quarter, and the school is genuinely grateful that there were no students who suffered from the coronavirus. In addition, the school would like to encourage all the students and professors to keep persevering till the end.