Admission is free, but a love offering will be collected.
“It takes a large place to host this group, but we’re willing to do our part,” said Rev. Alan Schantz, Tabernacle associate pastor for music and worship. “I’m an active member of Sons of Jubal, which is the male counterpart to the Jubalheirs. Our groups often sing together.”
The chorus is made up of women music ministry leaders from churches throughout Georgia.
Four Carroll County residents are part of the Jubalheirs group: Afton Aultman, Susan Eernisse, Margaret Haney and Deanna Whittaker.
The group, which is directed by Dr. Jon Duncan, performs a wide variety of sacred music styles.
“They do contemporary worship and some traditional,” Schantz said. “They have an instrumental group which accompanies them and a hand bell group. The musical excellence of this group is amazing.”
In addition to concerts in Georgia, the group participates in mission projects in the U.S. and abroad. The Jubalaires have visited Italy, France, German, Costa Rica, Liberia, Peru, Guatemala, Muldova and the Ukraine.
Laverne Melton, a music associate in the Georgia Baptist Convention’s church music department, founded the group in 1973 and directed it through 1976. Wade Davis, a music department consultant, led the group until his retirement in 2000. Kent Jackson became the interim director in 2001, until Duncan took the job in 2002.
Duncan is a native of Oklahoma and served the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma for 10 years. Prior to that time, he served local churches in Enid, Okla. and the Oklahoma City metro area. He has served as an adjunct faculty member at Golden Gate Theological Seminary, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Phillips University.
Duncan holds a bachelor of music degree from the University of Oklahoma in Norman, a master of music education degree from Phillips University in Enid, Okla., a master of music degree in musicology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth and a doctorate in worship studies from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary in Chicago. Additional doctoral studies have been acquired at Oxford University, Southwestern and the University of Oklahoma.
Duncan frequently serves as a choral and instrumental clinician for state and national training events. He has written several articles and was a major contributor in a book, “The Resource for Instrumental Music,” released in 2002. He is also author of “Discovering Biblical Worship: A study guide to strengthen worship participation in local churches.
The Jubalheirs sang in Nashville at PraiSing 75 for the introduction of the 1975 edition of the Baptist Hymnal and in 1991 at PraiSing II for that year’s new hymnal introduction.
They were featured at the Baptist World Alliance in Toronto, Canada in 1980 and did a mini-tour of North Carolina in 1982.
They joined the Sons of Jubal for a 1984 mission tour of Costa Rica and later for a 1991 German tour.
Love offerings received at concerts have been used for various mission projects, including hymnals for the Baptist Children’s Home and for a mission church in Rome, N.Y. The money has also been used for assembly pianos and the organ at the Georgia Baptist Assembly and textbooks for the Baptist Seminary in Liberia.
An electronic keyboard and an autoharp were given by the choir to music missionaries in Guatemala. In 1997, a chapel organ, dedicated in memory of Frances McCommon, was presented to the Georgia Baptist Conference Center in Toccoa. Soprano, alto and tenor recorders were given to the music ministries department of the Montana Baptist Convention.
Members of the Jubalheirs must be either ministers of music, church organists and pianists, or active in music ministry, such as children’s or adult choirs, hand bell choir, associate directors, praise team or instrumental group members. Applicants must receive the recommendation of a minister of music or pastor and go through an auditioning process. Prospective members are urged to join by attending a fall retreat or afternoon rehearsal, followed by observing the evening concert.
The Jubalheirs’ counterpart male choir, the 150-member Sons of Jubal, made history last April when it visited China and North Korea. The group, founded in 1954, is the largest American musical group to ever perform in North Korea. They were sponsored by Global Resource Services, a nonprofit humanitarian organization that has worked with North Korea for several years. The touring group included eight members from the West Georgia area.