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Music and the Spoken Word: What 90 years of the Tabernacle Choir's broadcast has brought to the world

Editor's note: “The Spoken Word” is shared by Lloyd Newell each Sunday during the weekly Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square broadcast. This will be given July 14, 2019.

We opened today’s broadcast the same way we opened The Tabernacle Choir’s first-ever broadcast 90 years ago: with a stirring hymn titled “The Morning Breaks, the Shadows Flee.” It was composed by George Careless, former conductor of the choir, and looking back, it was the perfect way to begin the weekly tradition of "Music and the Spoken Word" — with a song about “the dawning of a brighter day” majestically rising “on the world.” Mornings, after all, bring hope. The dawn is a signal of promise and possibility and encouragement. And this is what "Music and the Spoken Word" has brought to the world for nine decades now. No one knew it at the time, but July 15, 1929, marked the dawning of the longest continuously broadcast network program in history.

There are other things in this world that have lasted 90 years or longer, but it’s rare in the world of broadcasting. Popular taste in television and radio programming seems to change so quickly. And yet some things transcend cultural trends. No matter who we are or where we live, we all need “a brighter day” sometimes. We all need to be uplifted and inspired. We need a moment to celebrate beauty and goodness, to find peace and hope, and to sing praises to God. Ninety years of that — now that’s a milestone worth noting.

It’s also quite a legacy to live up to. All of us associated with the broadcast do our best to honor that legacy. Not only do we stand on the shoulders of those who went before us, we also acknowledge the people behind the scenes — the people behind the camera and far from the microphone. And that includes each of you. This day and always, we acknowledge everything you do to help usher in the dawning of a brighter day — your every effort to lift and inspire others, to give the world something of beauty and goodness, to bring peace and hope to a troubled world, and to glorify God. And should you need encouragement and inspiration in your efforts, we’ll be here, just as we have for 90 years.

Tuning in …

The “Music and the Spoken Word” broadcast is available on KSL-TV, KSL Radio 1160 AM/102.7 FM, ksl.com, BYU-TV, BYU Radio, Dish and DirecTV, SiriusXM Radio (Channel 143), the Tabernacle Choir's website and YouTube channel and Amazon Alexa (must enable skill). The program is aired live on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. on many of these outlets. Look up broadcast information by state and city at musicandthespokenword.org/schedules.

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