High­lands Church wel­comes new wor­ship leader, adds new 11:00 a.m. ser­vice

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - BUSINESS SHOWCASE - BY SARAH HANEY NWA DEMO­CRAT-GAZETTE

High­lands Church, a United Methodist con­gre­ga­tion in Bella Vista, re­cently wel­comed Kris Schoeppey as wor­ship leader for the church’s new con­tem­po­rary ser­vice. Start­ing in her new role in May, Schoeppey has had the sum­mer to pre­pare for the kick­off of the new ser­vice sched­uled to be­gin on Septem­ber 10. Schoeppey, along with her hus­band, Brad, raised their three, now young adult, sons in Bartlesville, Ok­la­homa, be­fore liv­ing in Ne­braska from 2012 to 2015. She grad­u­ated from John Brown Univer­sity with a mu­sic ed­u­ca­tion de­gree and taught mu­sic. When her sons were younger, she also gave pri­vate mu­sic lessons. “I al­ways dreamed of be­ing a wor­ship leader, and in 2002 my church in­vited me to ap­ply for the job — that’s when it all be­gan,” stated Schoeppey.

While her role comes with many re­spon­si­bil­i­ties, in­clud­ing plan­ning for vol­un­teers for ev­ery­thing from greeters to peo­ple who do Com­mu­nion, Schoeppey’s pri­mary fo­cus at the mo­ment is re­cruit­ing band mem­bers. The con­tem­po­rary ser­vice is in need of a drum­mer, acous­tic gui­tar player, bass player, and elec­tric gui­tar player. “I’ve started choos­ing mu­sic that we’ll use long-term and I’ve been set­ting up prac­tice sets,” added Schoeppey. For ex­am­ple, on Spo­tify and Youtube I have a set of five songs and I change them ev­ery week so peo­ple will start get­ting used to lis­ten­ing to them.”

While there are many re­ward­ing as­pects to be­ing a wor­ship leader, Schoeppey said her fa­vorite is “see­ing peo­ple make a con­nec­tion with God, and then if they take that and trans­fer that to their ev­ery­day lives, then it be­comes part of their life­style which is fan­tas­tic.”

Schoeppey teaches high school vo­cal mu­sic at Gravette dur­ing the school year and is new to High­lands Church. “I have found them to be a very warm and gen­er­ous group of peo­ple — they are very friendly,” noted Schoeppey. “I’m look­ing for­ward to meet­ing peo­ple that maybe are look­ing for a church home to come and ex­pe­ri­ence the same kind of hos­pi­tal­ity that I’ve been of­fered.”

The con­tem­po­rary ser­vice is brand new to High­lands Church. The church has had a tra­di­tional ser­vice for years and a 5:30 p.m. Satur­day evening ser­vice that’s more of an eclec­tic and in­for­mal ser­vice. The con­tem­po­rary ser­vice will be a new ser­vice added to what the church al­ready of­fers. The 9:30 a.m. ser­vice on Sun­day is very tra­di­tional, and the con­tem­po­rary ser­vice will be at 11 a.m. It will be com­pletely dif­fer­ent from the other two ser­vices. The new ser­vice will in­cor­po­rate con­tem­po­rary mu­sic and will re­late to fam­i­lies in the com­mu­nity.

High­lands Methodist Church is lo­cated at 371 Glas­gow Road in Bella Vista. For more in­for­ma­tion, con­tact the church by tele­phone at (479) 855-2277, or on­line at hum­cbv.com.

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