Through the Looking Glass

EXPO_2014_LogoHalloween is not my favorite day. I can remember taking my young son trick-or-treating when he was a toddler. We went to a neighborhood that went all out with their decorations. House upon house had darkened their porch, made hatchets with dripping blood and had recordings of howling and moaning. Decorating with Evil. I remember my baby boy and the fear mixed with desire because he knew that if he could walk past the evil he would get…candy.

Halloween is about masks and disguises. It is about dressing up and pretending to be someone or something else. You’ve had that moment that someone walked up to you in a mask and just stood next to you. Standing there uncomfortable you wonder who it is…

Moses wore a mask. Really the burning bush, part the red sea, let-my-people-go, guy wore a mask. He had been up on Mount Sinai. Exodus 33:11 says, “The Lord spoke to Moses face to face as a man speaks to a friend.” While up on the mountain with God, Moses asked for something huge…he asked to see God. Not just a burning bush or a cloud but to actually see the glory of God. The problem is to see the face of the holy God would have utterly destroyed Moses.

So God set Moses in the cleft of a rock and covered his eyes until after God passed by. Moses was able to see the result of God’s glory – the trail that came after. That trail was enough to set Moses face aglow. When Moses came back down his glowing face freaked people out; they were terrified.

So Moses put on a mask. The Bible actually calls it a veil.

Seems like a pretty good idea right? I mean that way the people would not be afraid and could actually hear God’s message for them. And that worked pretty good until Moses started liking the mask a little too much. Remember the mask was not God’s idea…it was Moses’. The glowing face would fade the longer he was away from God’s presence.

The problem according to the Apostle Paul is that Moses would keep on the mask even though the glory of God faded from his face.

The commandments given through Moses were hard to keep. People make mistakes and sin. Sin takes us out of favor with God, and we no longer reflect His glory. That changed with Jesus. His death and resurrection changed things. He became the ultimate, eternal sacrifice for our sins. His sacrifice actually takes away the veil and we are able to fully reflect the glory of God.

Paul says, “So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord – who is Spirit – makes us more and more like Him as we are changed into His glorious image.” (1 Cor 3:18 NLT)

As Christians our dwelling in Christ transforms us into His image and reflect our Holy God to those around us.

Our theme for CYT in 2014 is “Through the Looking Glass”. It is based on 1 Corinthians 3:18 that we would reflect the glory of the Lord. The when people look at us they would see Christ. By ourselves we are not perfect but in Christ we are made clean and holy – for God’s glory.

Contributed by Pastor Tom Kirkendall, CYT Inc. Board Member

The World is a Stage

CPPerformers_2col recently put the spotlight on the CYT Denver community.

CYT student Ally Fritsch told the media outlet that she loves everyone at CYT because, “they are all so friendly and accepting of others.”

“For example, on my first day of rehearsals for my first show, I had just barely walked in the door when a really nice girl came up and befriended me.  She is one of my best friends now!”

Fritsch’s mom, Nancy, said the shows require a ton of effort to make them happen.

“There is so much love and dedication and it really shows in the high-quality productions,” she said.

CYT Spokane Presents Willy Wonka


Roald Dahl’s timeless story of the world-famous candy man and his quest to find an heir comes to life in this stage adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which features the songs from the classic family film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, presented by CYT Spokane.

An enigmatic candy manufacturer Willy Wonka as he stages a contest by hiding five golden tickets in five of his scrumptious candy bars. Whoever comes up with these tickets will win a free tour of the Wonka factory, as well as a lifetime supply of candy. Four of the five winning children are insufferable brats: the fifth is a likeable young lad named Charlie Bucket who takes the tour in the company of his equally amiable grandfather. The children must learn to follow Mr. Wonka’s rules in the factory – or suffer the consequences.

Shows are Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m., with matinees on Saturdays at 3 p.m. and Sunday, March 2 at 2 p.m.


The Importance of an Annual Board Retreat

If you don’t already have an annual Board of Directors retreat, I suggest you plan one for 2014.

January is a good month to hold the retreat. It starts the new year off with a unified group and the Artistic and Managing Directors are able to give a summary of the previous year as well as set the vision and goals for the current year.

Why have a Board retreat?

  • Share success stories and challenges
  • Refocusing on the mission and vision
  • Strengthen board relationships and team-building
  • Orient new board members
  • Refresh board member’s understanding of their responsibilities
  • Develop a fund-raising plan
  • Prepare for strategic planning

The Board retreat should be on a day when you can spend at least 4-6 hours. Meet in a home or a retreat setting… not at your normal board meeting site. Provide lunch and use that time to get to know one another on a more personal level. At the end of the retreat, hopefully you will be able to agree with the apostle Paul.

“…being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.” -Philippians 2:2

Contributed by Sheryl Russell

CYT North Idaho’s 5th Annual Play-In-A-Day Fundraiser

196x198x2172045A6-A2FE-834C-DF2B3D16EFA82A46.jpg.pagespeed.ic.bUtd_xkCjGCYT North Idaho will host their fifth annual Play-In-A-Day Fundraiser at the Salvation Army Kroc Community Theater, 1765 W. golf Course Rd., Coeur d’Alene, ID, on January 2 & 3, 2014.

In the last four years over 600 local kids put on a play in just 24 hours! This event is FREE to kids between the ages of 10-18 and all participants are asked to sign up online prior to the event at the CYT NI website: click “Play in a Day” rotating screen and then follow the link to Chill Bucket Productions or go directly to Chill Bucket Productions website at

Space will be limited so sign up early!

CYT North Idaho’s Play-in-a-Day is the perfect fun activity once Christmas is over and its not quite time to go back to school. This year’s show will be an original musical written by Chill Bucket Productions called Hansel and Gretel. “This is a modern day version of the classic fairytale, Hansel and Gretel. Our two lead characters get lost in the woods and not even their cell phone GPS can help them out! They meet new friends and make new enemies in a fun-filled adventure that promises to keep the whole family on the edge of their seats! The show includes songs you know and love and lots of speaking parts.”

This is a fundraiser for CYT North Idaho which produces 3 fully-stage musicals a year at the S.A. Kroc Community Theater. Funds are raised at the Play in a Day event through ticket sales to the performance on January 3 at 7:30 p.m. You won’t want to miss this opportunity to see what 100+ local kids and numerous volunteer adults can pull off in just 24 hours! Tickets are $10 if bought online at our website: or at auditions on Jan 2 starting at 4 p.m. at the S.A. Kroc Community Theater. They will be $15 at the door on January 3.


Artistic Tip: Our Ultimate Audience

photoIn 2010, as a new Artistic Director for CYT, I met with a guy who would become a teacher and director for CYT, as well as a family friend.

When he asked about my family, I told him that my husband was a physicist and I was in theatre and then elaborated, “As you know, Bobby, those are two pretty secular fields.”

Months later, he told me that simple sentence had a large impact on him. He wondered when God had become removed from science and art. As I thought on it, and talked to my husband, we came to the realization that these two “secular” professions regularly reveal God to us. My husband experiences God daily in his experiments, and as for me, well, there’s nothing like seeing God show up time and again as I work to perform for him.

That is why I love CYT. CYT is a place where we can talk about God in an otherwise “dark” industry. CYT allows me to pray with my students, to ask them to turn to God in frustration and joy. CYT is a place where we teach students that it is God-honoring to do our best.

In San Diego, I recently reminded our CYT kids of why we bow at the end of a show. It is not actually to receive accolades, or applause. Instead, it comes from the tradition of actors performing in the palace and thanking the King from allowing them to perform.

The bow is a chance for an actor to offer gratuity to his or her audience. The bow says, “thank you,” not “you’re welcome.”

There is no greater moment than seeing a stage full of kids point up to our Heavenly Father at the end of the show, giving him the glory and honor. It reminds me that God is present within this “secular” field. Let’s also ask our actors to give a little nod afterwards, thanking God for the chance to perform for him.

He is our ultimate audience. And I am grateful to be on stage before him.

Contributed by Heather LaForge