CD Features Music of Eric and Tara Park
After a mission trip to
“That experience was transformational for me because, while ministering with the Ghanaians, I was confronted with my own poverty--a spiritual poverty in which I'm often enslaved by my own gluttony for the things that I want, but don't really need,” Eric said.
The self-proclaimed gluttony provided the name for a newly released CD by Eric and his wife Tara entitled Glutton’s Graffiti. Not only is the CD title, in a sense “the musical graffiti of a penitent glutton,” Eric said, “in a larger sense, it refers to the spiritual scribbling that our lives make amidst a culture that often seems addicted to gluttony.”
“Poorer than These” is the first song on the CD. All proceeds from its sale will go to support life-saving ministry on the continent of Africa, with half going to the
“I've not been to Africa yet, but somehow I feel connected to the remarkable things that God is doing there through the church,”
“We've been brought to tears by the redemptive stories that we've heard about the ministry of the Nyadire Mission, and we've been caught up in the bold vision of Imagine No Malaria.
“God has put
Eric wrote nine of the 10 songs on the CD, the second for the talented couple.They are based on their life experience.
“Music has become my primary way of dealing cathartically and interpretively with the circumstances of my life,” he explained. One song is about his love for
A song entitled Play “reflects my overwhelming desire for childlike whimsy amidst what seems to be an endless stream of serious responsibilities.”
All, he said, “represent my effort to process the things that are bigger that what spoken words can encapsulate”
One song, “When You Forget” deals with his father’s journey with Alzheimer’s Disease. “We recorded it for Dad back when he could still make cognitive sense of it,” he explained.
“It’s not meant to be a dirge. There's really a great deal of hope in it. It is my way of saying to my Dad that it’s OK. We'll remember for you when you forget, simply because your noble legacy demands nothing less."
Eric said the same sentiment applies in “the Christian community that we call church. It's a place where we can rely on other people to remember the life of discipleship for us when we're tempted to forget the urgency of that life.”
Annual Conference members may remember another of the songs, One in the Margins, which Eric played and sang as part of the Cabinet report last June.
“It's a song inspired by my conviction that many people spend a good portion of their life in one or more of the margins that our culture seems to create and accommodate--margins like poverty, loneliness, illness, grief, addiction, he said.
“If the gospels tell us anything it's that Jesus does some of his best and most redemptive work in those margins. He invites us to join him there.”
Produced by the Parks’ friend Rick Witkowski, it was recorded over about a year’s time at his Studio L in
“Rick and Anthony brought the songs to life in some amazing ways,” said
The CD can be ordered online beginning this month at gluttonsgraffiti.com. It is also for sale at the UM Center in Cranberry Twp. and downloadable on iTunes. At the UM Center, CDs are $15 each; two for $27; and $11 for each additional CD after two.