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Choral Trio Brings Peace to Those at Life’s Thresholds

Choral Trio Brings Peace to Those at Life’s Thresholds

You might recognize Bonnie Givens, Elsa Gorr-Sinicrope, and Bob Coates from the PCPC Chancel Choir. But leading the congregation in worship music on Sunday mornings isn’t the only way they’re lending their musical talents to the community. Bonnie, Elsa, and Bob make up the “Peace Trio,” a group that sings to comfort those at life’s thresholds.

Bonnie became inspired to form the trio after she heard about a program called the Threshold Organization. It’s a nonprofit group originating from California which encourages musicians — particularly singers — around the world to show compassion through song to those at the threshold of living and dying. She found the Threshold’s mission to be inspirational, and wanted to create something similar.

A year ago, Bonnie recruited her friends Elsa and Bob to consider singing with her. The three of them have gone through training, the paperwork is complete, and the Peace Trio is now officially authorized to sing at hospice and in hospital rooms.

They practice regularly, their voices weaving together to create beautiful harmonies. About half of the songs in their repertoire are sung acapella; the other half is supplemented with guitar playing by Elsa. The goal? To use simple songs and gentle voices to sing to patients who are getting ready to pass, and to give comfort to families.

Bonnie, Elsa, and Bob completed extensive volunteer training and background screening with Life Path Hospice, and now have an agreement to sing there in the lobby once a week. Personal visits to individuals’ rooms can be arranged following. Additionally, Pastor John and Pastor Nicole are prepared to contact the Peace Trio if a congregation member is in need.

The group aligns with the mission of the Threshold Choir, which states, We offer our singing as gentle blessings, not as entertainment, and we are honored when a client falls asleep as we are singing. Most of our songs are very short, so their repetition is conducive to rest and comfort. Families have said that our presence helps them to “be” with their loved one after the “doing” is done.

PCPC believes the Peace Trio is, indeed, fulfilling this mission to bring comfort to those at life’s thresholds. If you know someone who you believe could benefit from a visit by the Peace Trio, please contact Pastor John at john@palmaceia.org.

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