A time of giving, good-will and good cheer characterize the December holiday season. Amplifying this spirit is its festive, seasonal song. It is music grounded in spiritual celebration and contemplation, along with expressions of winter holiday joy.
For more than 30 years, OHSU and OHSU Doernbecher Hospitals have opened their doors to choirs and occasional instrumental music groups beginning in early December. Nearly 20 groups perform for patients, families and staff throughout the hospitals. Many come from public and private schools, some are local entertainers, and still others visit from faith-based assemblies. Finally, some singers have an OHSU connection. They are employees, medical staff and medical students.
The OHSU Carolers started singing in the OHSU units back in 1992. Twenty of our community members walk the unit halls, sharing cheer and seasonal sounds. Mark Kemball, with Alumni Services, previously conducted the group. Marti Mendenall, in our Department of Family Medicine, is the Caroler’s current director. Anne King, a Finance Director, organizes the group, and Amy Johnson, from the Legal Department, is the group’s longest participating member.
Watch the video below to meet the spirited group of OHSU carolers.
James Berry, M.Div., B.C.C.
Chaplain, OHSU Spiritual Services