All posts in “Worship”

O Holy Night

Laura Nothnagel, Evonne Johnson and Nathan Fry perform O Holy Night in the sanctuary of First Free Rockford.

Song written by Adolphe Adam and Placide Cappeau (public domain).

Silent Night

Nathan Fry performs Silent Night in the sanctuary of First Free Rockford.

Song written by Franz Xaver Gruber and Joseph Mohr (public domain).

His Name Shall Be

First Free Rockford’s chorale and orchestra virtually perform His Name Shall Be.

Song written by Jonas Myrin and Matt Redman (ThankYou Music).

Your 2020 Christmas music sampler

by Jim Killam | 5-minute read


We asked First Free’s three musical worship leaders — Renee Cooper, Nathan Fry and Nathan McDonald — for Christmas music recommendations. They came back with quite a variety. Read More

Worship leader roundtable

Back in March, just before the world changed, we gathered First Free’s musical worship leaders for a wide-ranging conversation. Renee Cooper (Classic), Nathan Fry (Contemporary) and Nathan McDonald (Chapel) spoke with Jim Killam about generational preferences, how they choose worship music and how they plan and coordinate our weekend services. Read More

The Lord our God is mighty

“Revelation 19” performed by the First Free Rockford choir, written by Jeffrey LaValley and arrangement by Jack Schrader.

School year prayer of dedication

We asked several people from our church family who are teachers and students to record a corporate prayer of dedication and God’s blessing on our students, teachers, administrators and staff — from preschool to graduate or trade school, or home school.



Written by:
Jim Killam & Rob Ullrich

Allegra Griffin (student)
Emma Joiner (student)
Heather Schlueter (teacher)
Rob & Cherice Ullrich (teachers)

Baptize Me by Benjamin James (Musicbed license)


Meet First Free’s one-woman band

by Jim Killam | 5-minute read


You wouldn’t know it by watching her play, but First Free organist Karen Anderson controls a warehouse full of electronic relays, pneumatic tubes, wall-sized louvers and — literally — almost 2,000 bells and whistles. Read More

Encore video: 50th Annual Patriotic Celebration

The Patriotic Celebration has been a First Free Rockford summer tradition since 1970. Of course, this year’s event, which would have been our 51st consecutive, has been canceled by COVID-19.

For those who are missing the event this summer, we are happy to present an encore video of last year’s 50th Annual Patriotic Celebration. The evening celebrated our heritage and honored our veterans and active military members … all in a spirit of thanks to God for our true freedom in Jesus Christ.

You can also download the printed program from last year (see below), and follow along with the long list of special music and performers.

Enjoy! And Happy Independence Day.