Cinderella Jam

The sounds of a jam session creep out of a propped-open side entry of The Bridge Community Christian Reformed Church.

Every Tuesday night, strains of music find their way onto a dark, quiet back street of Langley, British Columbia—but only until 10 p.m., because the musicians have to be home before curfew.

The musicians live at Vision Quest just down the street from the church. Vision Quest is a drug and alcohol recovery house for men, and its residents have attended worship at The Bridge for a number of years. Besides being conveniently located, the church’s casual worship style with an emphasis on music draws them in.

Andrea Isaak is the church’s worship music director. She noticed how some of “the guys,” as she lovingly calls them, would hang around after worship and look at the instruments. She discovered that they had musical interest and talent that had been buried in the spiral of addiction.

An invitation to hang out and jam and turned into a weekly opportunity to make music together.

On any given night there are guitars, drums, a violin, a mandolin. Everyone contributes to the vocals.

Isaak talked about the way music opened a door for The Bridge to be a place of mutual acceptance and grace. “Music has become part of their recovery,” she said. “It is redeeming for body and soul.”

Like Cinderella, most of the musicians have to be back home before their curfew. But better than Cinderella, Tuesday nights at The Bridge are real.

About the Author

Jenny deGroot is a teacher/librarian in Langley, British Columbia.

X