WARSAW—Dr. Terry White, who co-authored the centennial history of Winona Lake titled “Winona at 100: Third Wave Rising,” will present an illustrated lecture on Homer Rodeheaver’s work as a musician on Sunday, Feb. 11.
White’s presentation will begin at 3 p.m. at the Warsaw First United Methodist Church. It will include a creative “Name That Rodeheaver Tune” audience-involvement contest. The program will conclude with a short hymn sing. Artifacts from Rodeheaver’s life and ministry will be on display.
Winona Lake was known in the early and middle 1900s as home of the world’s largest Bible conference. A key figure in that movement was evangelist Billy Sunday, who moved with his family to Winona Lake in 1911. Sunday’s music leader, choir director, and platform emcee was a young trombonist named Homer Rodeheaver. Rodeheaver worked with Sunday for 20 years, then established a school of music, an annual summer music festival and a publishing company that became the largest gospel music publisher in the world.
Rodeheaver amassed copyrights from hundreds of authors, hired composers and editors to put them to music, and published and recorded some of America’s best-loved hymns and gospel songs, including “The Old Rugged Cross,” “In the Garden” and “Beyond the Sunset.”