Fayetteville: UCF celebrates 75 years of unity

A winning hymn

A member since the 1960s, 91-year-old Lorraine Schmidt took up songwriting for the very first time this year. Her lyrics won her first place in the Anniversary Hymn Contest put on by the church.

The choir sang her winning hymn for the first time at Sunday's worship service that concluded the anniversary celebrations.

"I've never done anything like it before, to tell you the truth," she said.

The theme focused on the church and its faith statement, and used words like community, love and caring, she said.

"I'm so far removed from it now I hardly know the words!" Schmidt said, laughing. "When the choir sang it last week I felt very detached like someone else had written it."

The lyrics went to an old American tune called "Beach Spring" -- music that Schmidt picked out from a church program.

"I saw the tune written out on the back of the program, which we sometimes do, and I thought, 'Yes, I can do that. I can do that with that tune.'"

Asked if she felt inspired to write what she named, "Hymn of Celebration," she answered, "I really was. I really was."

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