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News Release

Six Children Selected to Sing Moravian Star Solo at Vespers

Bethlehem, Pa., December 1—Six children have been selected to sing the solo portions of the traditional Moravian hymn, “Morning Star,” at the Moravian College and Moravian Theological Seminary Christmas Vespers services in December. The Moravian College Choir, conducted by Dr. Paula Ring Zerkle, will be featured in the six services that will be held December 4, 5, 6, and 11, 12, and 13 at Central Moravian Church in Bethlehem, Pa. The Christmas Vespers services are held for the immediate college community and invited guests.

Members of the Moravian College Music Department chose Naomi Kuhns (age 11), Kayla Sponsel (age 11), Kaylee Saylor (age 8), Helen Louise Lingshi Meckstroth (age 8), Masatami Cauller (age 8) and Elisabeth Lee (age 8) to sing “Morning Star” at the annual vespers.

Naomi Kuhns is the daughter of Liz and Jeff Kuhns and the granddaughter of Carol Wigfield, a 1987 Moravian graduate .  Naomi is in the sixth grade at Salisbury Middle School in Allentown, Pa.

Kayla Sponsel is the daughter of Janine and Michael Sponsel. Kayla is a sixth grade student at St. Elizabeth Regional School in Whitehall, Pa.

Kaylee Saylor is the daughter of Moravian College alumnae Ellen and Paul Saylor III. Haylee is a member of the Joy Singers Choir at Nazareth Moravian Church. She is in third grade at Lower Nazareth Elementary School in Nazareth, Pa.

Helen Louise Lingshi Meckstroth is the daughter of Lynnette Dellbridge and Andrew Meckstroth, both Moravian Theological Seminary alumae. Her father is also a Moravian College graduate. Helen enjoys singing in the music class at Castleton Hill Moravian Church. She is in the third grade at P.S. 29 in Staten Island, N.Y.

Masatami Cauller is the daughter of Nacko and Tim Cauller.  Masatami is a third grade student at Lehigh Valley Academy in Bethlehem, Pa.

Elisabeth Lee is the daughter of Dr. Grace Ji-Sun Kim and Dr. Perry Lee. Her mother is an associate professor at Moravian Theological Seminary.  Elisabeth is a third grade student at Lehigh Valley Academy in Bethlehem, Pa.

Moravian Theological Seminary graduate Francis Florentine Hagen composed "Morning Star" in 1836. The  Morning Star hymn is traditionally sung by a child soloist each year. Auditions were held in October. The soloist, choir, and congregation join in singing the hymn as the church lights are dimmed and the beeswax candles are distributed by members of the college and seminary community. Moravian College's tradition of celebrating the Christmas season with special vespers services dates back to 1742.

Moravian College is a private, coeducational, selective liberal arts college located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Tracing its founding to 1742, it is recognized as America’s sixth-oldest college. Visit the Web site at www.moravian.edu.