By Kat Harris
KINGSLAND — First Baptist Church Music Minister Kevin Connell remembers that night in August 2017 when Betty Bush stood with other choir members for nearly an hour. The Night of Worship event focused on Heaven. For Connell, Bush stood out as a picture of someone singing with that in mind.
“I sat there in awe as I watched Betty joyfully standing, singing, praising, and leading with all of the other lead worshipers,” he said. “I was shocked to learn that she was already 90 years old.”
Bush, now 92, joined the choir at the age of 18. Over the past 74 years she has also filled in as the church organist and has a background playing the piano.
“Miss Betty,” as she is affectionately known, participates in every choir rehearsal and the singing of all the hymns. In an interview for this article, she displayed an impressive soprano voice with a rendition of her favorite, “The Old Rugged Cross.”
“Miss Betty always shares [with everyone] how well the choir sang – every Sunday,” said her friend, Jean Marie Brazell, who sang a duet with Bush at Christmas. The two – both who have front-row choir seats – often take road trips that include singing hymns. Brazell also shared how Bush prays for everyone in the world daily “so that the world is prayed for at least once.”
The 92-year-old’s spirit serves as a constant inspiration, noted Connell.
“Miss Betty is a picture of strength, determination, faithfulness, joy, and love for Jesus and church. Her spirit is joyfully sweet. She is one of those people that bless you anytime you are around her. Her faith and love for Jesus make mine all that much stronger and sweeter.
“She inspires us. When you realize all that she has lived through, including the loss of her husband, you are inspired by her tenacious faithfulness. She is our rock of faith.”
Kat Harris is a freelance writer based in Atlanta.