A newsletter for friends of the Global Mission Institute, Luther Seminary

Global Vision - Spring 2012

View more articles in the Spring 2012 issue.

Love All Around the World III

by Kari Aanestad, M.Div. Senior

Five classically trained musicians will graciously donate their time and talents to offer "Love All Around the World III," a benefit concert for the Global Mission Institute.

The concert will take place on Saturday, May 12 at 6:30 p.m. at Luther Seminary's Chapel of the Incarnation in the Olson Campus Center.

Mikyoung Park, Master of Divinity student and Master of Sacred Music graduate,'09, is organizing this concert for the third year in a row. She pioneered the idea for a benefit concert in 2009 as a way to show gratitude for the scholarship support she has received to study at Luther Seminary. Both Park and her husband, Joshua Choi, who received a Master of Divinity,'08, and a Master of Theology,'10, from Luther, have received enough financial support to cover almost the entire cost of their studies.

"We are so grateful that we received so much support to study here, and so I thought I could share my gifts and talents with the school," said Park, who holds a doctorate in voice performance.

All of the concerts are open to the public. A freewill donation to support the International Student Scholarship Fund, which supports international students recommended by their home church bodies for leadership development at Luther Seminary, will be taken during the event.

This academic year, Luther Seminary is blessed with 73 international students from 27 different countries and several different religious denominations, studying in nearly every program offered.  About 90 percent of the international students receive some form of financial aid, ranging from continuation fees to full tuition and living expenses.

"We are so incredibly fortunate that this year's concert will feature the talents of five classically trained, highly accomplished musicians who both teach and perform internationally," said Chenar Howard, GMI program and relations coordinator. "Their gracious generosity is such a gift to the seminary."

"All of the musicians love to perform, and these benefit concerts are something that they feel really good about," Park said.

"I can't begin to tell you how blessed I feel to be a part of these concerts," said Greg Kajiwara, who received his Master of Music degree in clarinet performance from the University of Minnesota. "I look forward to performing with my talented colleagues and am thankful to have the opportunity to give back to the community." 

Kajiwara has performed with the Minnesota Orchestra, Duluth Superior Symphony, Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra and the Round Top Music Festival Orchestra to name a few.

"As an international student, I have received scholarships in the past, and I understand the importance of it," said Momoko Tanno, vocal performer and longtime friend of Park. "It is my hope that through these concerts, we can share the love from all around the world through music."

Tanno studied voice in Paris and is a frequent performer of opera, musical theater, oratorio and recitals in the United States, Japan and Germany.

In addition to hosting benefit concerts to support the Global Mission Institute at Luther Seminary, Park and her musician friends are also available for benefit concerts to support ministries of area churches. Last year, they also hosted a benefit concert to support the victims of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and they will host a benefit concert in June to support the ministries of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Carondelet in Saint Paul, Minn.

"Whenever churches want to have a benefit concert to support one of their ministries, we always try to work around our schedules to make it happen," Park said. "We all feel really good about being able to give our time and talents this way to the church."

For more information on hosting a benefit concert to support the ministries of area churches, please contact Mikyoung Park at mpark001@luthersem.edu.

For more information on this year's benefit concert, Love All Around the World III: www.luthersem.edu/gmi/activities.