By Gil Cohen
You can learn much about foreign countries through books and the internet but the best way to gain true insight into the culture of other countries is to go there in person.That’s the opinion of Jodi Bohr, director of music ministry at Lower Providence Presbyterian Church and music teacher at Lower School Music Academy.
After eight years of service at Lower Providence Presbyterian Church, Sunday, July 28, will mark her last day in that position.
She will be stepping down from the full-time post and has accepted a part-time position as an organist at First United Methodist Church of Germantown. Bohr will also retain her position at the Lower School Music Academy.
“It’s been a pleasure working at LP Presbyterian Church, but the change gives me more free time to spend with my family,” said the 56-year-old Bohr.
Lower Providence Presbyterian Church Senior Minster Ted Mingle praised Bohr “as an amazing blessing for the church. She has touched all of us with her love through her music ministry.”
On a recent Saturday afternoon, Bohr spoke with parishioners at the Old Norriton Church in Fairview Village about her trip to Africa last year.
In her hour-long presentation, she spoke about her reasons for going on the mission trip, what she did, what she saw and what she learned there. She found out about the mission trip through the Chariots of Hope, a Dresher-based organization which, in partnership with the African Inland Church, supports eight homes in Kenya, Africa
Her mission in Kenya was to record traditional folk music and later play them back to students. She is also planning to use the recordings to write, publish and sell a book in both print and digital format. Proceeds from book sales would go to the Chariots Of Hope. While in Kenya, she spent time in three homes and one school.
Not only did she record the music of Kenya, she also reciprocated by teaching the Kenyans American folk songs, hymns, dances and gospel music. She had no problem communicating with the children, who speak both Swahili and English.
“They all had smiles on their faces and listened intently to what I had to say,” Bohr said. “For them, music is part of their lives — from the morning when they get up to when they go to bed.