Tuesday, April 18, 2023 – 7:30 pm


The annual Henry Ford College Spring Choral Concert will take place on Tuesday, April 18 at 7:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary at Cherry Hill Church. The concert will feature performances by the HFC Chorus (mixed chorus), Renaissance Voices (women’s ensemble), and three vocal jazz groups - Blue Fusion, Evergreen Blues, and Midnight Blue. The concert will be conducted by HFC’s Director of Choirs G. Kevin Dewey.


Musical selections include works by G. Kevin Dewey, Elaine Hagenberg, Jonathan Larson, Morten Lauridsen, William Mathias, and Robert H. Young; choral settings of Arabic folk songs as well as texts by Charles Dickens and William Shakespeare; and jazz arrangements by April Arabian-Tini, Darmon Meader, Gene Puerling, Kirby Shaw, and Michele Weir.


Tickets for the concert are $10 ($7 for students and seniors) and will be available at the door. All Cherry Hill Church members may purchase tickets at the $7 price from the Cherry Hill Church office.

SUNDAY, APRIL 23, 2023 – 4:00 pm



It is said that our very being can begin to heal through clear reflection and self-love. Much like winter ending and spring beginning, the trees are beginning to bud, the snow is beginning to melt, and the roses are beginning to bloom. Vanguard Voices & Brass’ Les Chansons Des Roses Spring Concert will allow all audience members to feel the beauty and elegance of a blooming season. We will be featuring pieces by Thomas Moore, Morten Johannes Lauridsen, Josef Hadar, and many more. Spring forward with not only daylight saving, but with refreshing sounds reminding us that spring has sprung.  The annual Vanguard Voices & Brass Spring Concert will take place on Sunday, April 23 at 4 p.m. in the Sanctuary at Cherry Hill Presbyterian Church. Tickets for the concert are $15 at the door (cash or check), $13 in advance, $6 student.  For tickets, call (313) 943-2354 or visit


A new, occasional column to answer questions that I am asked from time to time. – MFP

The first question comes from a friend and regular worshiper at Cherry Hill:  Why don’t Presbyterians make the sign of the cross as part of our worship services?


I found this question intriguing, so I started by doing a little research. In all that I read, I did not find anything substantial to support a case of making or not making the sign of the cross. Of course, the first argument is that it’s a “catholic” thing to do. Not true.  Most Protestants don’t make the sign of the cross because they are not persuaded that there is Biblical basis for doing so. A minority of Protestants, mainly Lutherans, make the sign of the cross because Martin Luther encouraged it as an outward expression of their faith in Jesus Christ. And yet, in some Reformed churches, such as the Presbyterian Church (USA), the sign of the cross is used at times during the benediction. The minister will make the sign of the cross out toward the congregation while invoking the Trinity.  Still, when it comes down to it, making the sign of the cross is not a matter of obedience and not making it is not a matter of disobedience.


I wonder: “What would it look like for Presbyterians and other Protestants to recover and reclaim the old tradition of making the sign of the cross?” After all, many of us have crosses that hang in our homes or around our necks. Many of our churches display crosses on the Communion Table or in other places in the sanctuary. At times, the abundance of crosses can feel like more of a fashion statement than a sign of our faith. However, whether from our fear of Catholicism or superstition, we’ve abandoned the ancient ritual of engaging our bodies in making the sign of the cross.


In making such a sign, we remind ourselves that God is with us in those happy moments, such as a baptism or a blessing, and the more sober and tender ones on the deathbed or in an Ash Wednesday service. I mean, I’ve been placing the sign of the cross on the foreheads of over 100 infants, youth, and adults for baptism … and I have no idea how many foreheads over the years have received a dusty cross of ashes from my thumb on Ash Wednesday. We engage not just our minds and our hearts, but our material bodies, our dust-ness, reminding ourselves that we encounter God on every level, with our whole selves.


In tracing the sign of the cross, we contemplate Jesus’ life and the events that led to his death. And somewhere in that tracing of the sign we also remember, however faintly, that the way of the cross is also the way of life.


I don’t know, perhaps Holy Week is the perfect time – even for us Presbyterians – to begin making the sign of the cross.


Something to ponder, no? Thanks, dear friend for the question! I’m glad you asked that!


If you have a question, please feel free to send it to me at I will be happy to do my best to answer. And I promise, I’ll respect your anonymity!