Unique in concept, soaring in spirit, and with music, text, and narration by Pepper Choplin, “Come Touch the Robe” allows us to encounter the Christ of healing, glory, authority, humility, and victory. This work uses the simple garment that Jesus wore as a thematic device to recount the interaction of those who were with Him during His last days on Earth. To a suffering woman, His robe conveyed divine healing. On the mountaintop, the robe shone and filled the disciples’ eyes with His glory and authority. When Jesus laid His garment aside in the upper room, it displayed His humility as a servant. At the tomb, the grave clothes He left behind help us experience His resurrection and the victory over death. It is through these personal, touching moments that our hearts are fully prepared to meet Jesus in an intimate way, allowing us to experience the healing, the glory, and the power of Christ, and rejoice in the stirring celebration of the resurrection of the Lamb of God.
who has presented COME TOUCH THE ROBE this year. It is wonderful to hear how the musical fit into the worship life of your church. I’ve enjoyed hearing about how you added drama or used cloth to enhance your presentation.
It was the most astounding concert our church has performed in my recollection. The lyrics were so moving and I loved the way each song had a different "flavour." The music has touched me and my family and our congregation and I just wanted to thank you so much for bringing this amazing work to the world.
For the past eight years, I have done
a Christmas and an Easter cantata every season. Hands down, "Come,
Touch the Robe" was everyone's favorite. The sensitive
narration, the combination of music styles, the orchestration and the choral
arrangements truly spoke to the choir and our congregation… The message I heard again and again was that
people saw the life of Christ, His crucifixion and His resurrection in a new
light… "Come,Touch the Robe" was an incredible celebration for our
congregation and our many guests...once again, we say THANKS!
Rebecca Sturgis, Lord of Life Lutheran Church, Bluffton, SC
Well, God used your work in a powerful way at FBC Smithfield yesterday morning. We had a 15-member instrumental ensemble, there were 40 in the choir, 25 in children’s choir, about 12 actors. Many tears as we sang! At end of service pastor invited everyone to “come touch a robe” (we had placed three robes at front on quilt stands) and the response was overwhelming. Many came to pray, we had to sing extra stanzas of “Wherever He leads I’ll Go.”
I want to thank you for this powerful reflection on Christ's final days. My choir loved it!! Most of these singers have sung more than 30 or 40 cantatas in their careers as volunteers in music ministry. Many have told me, it was the best work they have sung! I too enjoyed the freshness and diversity of your music, but was really inspired by the narratives leading into each piece. We used dancers on several of the pieces using cloth to represent the themes. We had two associate ministers perform "a foot washing" during "Wash Their Feet".
We had one actor, a woman, dressed in Biblical attire walk in during the solo section of "Come, Touch the Robe". She was carrying a purple robe which was placed on the altar during the singing of the cantata. After the singing of "Worthy Is the Lamb" our pastor did a spoken benediction that included portions of the cantata narration and concluded with the invitation to "come, touch the robe". As the Biblical woman actor held out the robe, the choir sang the opening anthem, "Come, Touch the Robe" as the members of the congregation came to the front of the sanctuary and touched the robe. It was a very powerful experience for the choir and congregation and seemed the perfect concluding touch to the presentation.
Our choir just performed Come Touch the Robe last Sunday . one of the best-received we've ever done. I am the accompanist. …I'm writing for a couple of reasons: to say what a gift you have for making the perfect accompaniment on piano for the choral/spiritual effect being portrayed (LOVED Soldiers of the Cross). And to say that the Lorenz catalog shows "Carols We love" and now that I know your name and compositions, it suddenly becomes an interesting compilation to obtain. THANKS!
This past Sunday (Palm Sunday) our church choir performed your musical masterpiece " Come Touch the Robe". My wife and I were moved to tears as was most of the congregation. It is beautiful beyond words.
Luther D. Zimmerman,