This Month's Newsletter

The monthly Sing For Joy newsletter contains a letter from the program's host, Pastor Bruce Benson, along with a listing of music selections for each program and the corresponding scripture readings. If you'd like to receive a complimentary subscription, fill out our online request form for either the print newsletter or the electronic newsletter.

September 2018 Newsletter (Year B)
In Memoriam, by Pastor Bruce Benson

You may or may not remember that last month’s host letter described how traveling through middle America during the summertime reminds me of
Sing For Joy’s sponsor, Sukup Manufacturing, and the Sukup family. The great rural sea of corn on both sides of nearly every highway has to be stored and dried somewhere while waiting for market, and the Sukups manufacture just the equipment farmers need for that. What I did not know while describing the scene outside my car window was that Eugene Sukup, farmer, inventor, founder of Sukup Manufacturing, and long-time generous sponsor of Sing For Joy, was living the very last days of his life. He was on my mind as I wrote, but not because of the approaching end-of-life in his room; rather, because of the abundance of life in farm fields. However, the day after that newsletter went to the printer, we learned from Charles Sukup, current president of Sukup Manufacturing, that his dad had died. 

I went to the funeral, which was full of good music and Good News, as you would expect; and while sitting in the full and overflowing church, I experienced a
Sing For Joy kind of moment that made me smile in the midst of the congregation’s sorrow and seriousness. A soloist was singing Beautiful Savior; and somewhere near the end of the second stanza I realized that the soloist wasn’t the only one singing. The woman sitting next to me, not someone I knew, simply could not stop herself from quietly singing along on a phrase or two of each stanza. She was not disruptive; she just wanted to join what was for her (and all of us) a moving hymn in that emotional setting. Okay, I admit: by the fourth stanza I was following her example, humming the bass line myself. Somehow, it seemed a fitting thing to do as we were remembering, honoring and commending to God someone who had sponsored Sing For Joy for many, many years. 

On the way to the cemetery, the funeral procession turned to detour slowly past the manufacturing plant started by Eugene Sukup. Lined up along the road were workers from the plant, men and women in their work clothes, many with the tools they operate, all standing tall, paying tribute. It was a moving sight. And at the grave site, the presiding minister sang. Perhaps he does so at all burials, I didn’t ask; but it seemed especially appropriate to me at this one. One more reminder that even in sorrow, God’s people can sing for joy. 

Thank you, Eugene Sukup. As the old Latin requiem mass says: Lux aeterna luceat eis. May light eternal shine on you.

Peace be with you,




Pastor Bruce Benson

We received an outpouring of generous donations given in Eugene's memory this past month, along with messages sharing fond memories. Thank you for choosing Sing For Joy to help honor the life of a remarkable man.

Support Sing for Joy

Sing For Joy is supported by listeners like you. When you give to Sing For Joy you are saying yes to great sacred choral music. Have questions or want to donate by phone? Call us at 507-786-2600.

Show your support and donate today!

September Playlists and Programs

Playlists are ready now, and each show will become available to stream on the Friday before the week begins.

September 2, 2018: Time After Pentecost — Lectionary 22 (Year B)

September 9, 2018: Time After Pentecost — Lectionary 23 (Year B)

September 16, 2018: Time After Pentecost — Lectionary 24 (Year B)

September 23, 2018: Time After Pentecost — Lectionary 25 (Year B)

September 30, 2018: Time After Pentecost — Lectionary 26 (Year B)


Connect with Sing For Joy!

We love hearing from listeners! Share with us how Sing For Joy plays a role in your life and we'll print responses in future newsletters. Join in the Sing For Joy conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Write to us.

Lanterns and candle on altar of Boe Memorial Chapel at St. Olaf College
Memorials and Honorariums

Thank you for your gifts in memory and honor of those close to your heart.


Lowell Gangstad, my choir director

Eugene Sukup, to honor the memory of a great man and his legacy

Eugene Sukup, his memory will truly live on throughout generations

Eugene Sukup, a wonderful man, who cared about so many others 

Donations can celebrate a personal milestone such as an anniversary or birthday, or honor a loved one who perhaps also enjoyed music, all while furthering the Sing For Joy mission to bring sacred choral music to listeners around the world.

Sing For Joy is sponsored by:

Sukup Manufacturing Co., St. Olaf College, and American Choral Directors Association (ACDA)

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