2013 Seasons Greetings from the Benedicts

Hi Friends and Family!
Welcome to year 4 of the Benedict annual digital Epiphany card.  This was a crazy yo-yo of a year with some awesome highs and some terrible lows.  From leaving my (bruce) employment at our church in Raleigh to spending a month traipsing around Europe we felt like we truly explored the heights and depths of life here on earth.  We love you all and could never have made it through this year without you. Enjoy some recollections (and links) from #2013 below. 



Always great to spend time with friends at the Calvin Worship Symposium. Excited to be published in my 2nd hymnal in the last year from the folks at Faith Alive Publications.



Pj developed a solo, durational performance installation in collaboration with visual artist Gabrielle Duggan that they performed in March. “Fertile Crescent



Cardiphonia released its sixth compilation focusing on the Hallel Psalms for Holy Week. A first of a growing list of collaborations with Naaman Wood and the talented designer Erik Newby.

Songs for the Book of Luke cover art
t was a crazy year of collaborations for Bruce.  A song that he and Naaman Wood wrote was featured on the Gospel Coalition album “Songs for the Book of Luke.”


Bruce traveled up to Philly to attend the Bifrost Arts conference.  Great to finally spend some time in Philly and see so many scattered friends.


The box garden on its way to veggie goodness!


With 12 amazing local musicians, dancers, and actors Pj, as Urban Garden Performing Arts, led workshops to develop and perform Mark Twain’s Joan of Arc 2.0.

Laura and Luke, great friends from out of town, came to work on Joan of Arc.

wagner wagner-gts
Tim Wagner, a friend of the family and genius luthier built me my first handmade guitar. A OOO body style.

He Will Not Cry Out cover art
rote a song that was featured on the new Bifrost Arts CD. Album is soo good!


July kicked off with a major production from Pj’s Urban Garden Performing Arts called “Vogue Mens Fashions.”  The production got rave reviews and was one of the Triangle’s bests of 2013. The production starred friend John (pic above)

Bruce at the The Hymn Societies annual conference in Richmond, Va this year. Hanging out with friends, playing music, and enjoying some hymn geekery.


To Europe!!

Bruce presented a paper at an international congregational music studies conference in Oxford, England. Amazing to hear papers presented from scholars working all over the globe.

After all the work we got to hang out with our friend Tristan Treacy! mind-your-head
A little fun from Oxford.
A picture of Christ Church and me reliving the life of Jude, the Obscure. harris-2
more friends! So great to spend time with the growing Harris clan. Pete was our pastor at Camden Town Church.

And then on to London…
With support from great friends and artists in London, Pj and Bruce performed their 2nd iteration of their live arts piece “Death Becomes Her” at St. Barnabus Church in Dalston, London. One of the most profound moments of my(bruce) performing life thus far.  So great to collaborate with the folks at St. Barnabus and so awesome to reconnect with the Henningham Family Press.

No trip to London is complete without seeing the Spence Family!

So thankful for all of the friends we got to see and reconnect with in London. Love you all!


After a crazy time in London we needed a bit of RnR and headed over the smaller pond for our first foray into the Netherlands!

Pj checking out the bikes in front of one of the main canals in Amsterdam! brugge-musbrugge-canal
After Amsterdam we spent a few days in Belgium, in Brugge. Great sights, great food, and even a bike ride up the main canal to see one of the iconic windmills.

A picture of our last night in Europe as the sun set over the Thames.  We were so excited to be able to crash in a friends place (Jim and Ariel!) that was right on the banks of the river!


Whoa. crash landed back in the States.  Bruce decided not to attend his doctoral program at Duke and we found out that we would be adopting our current foster child! Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers during this potentially long process. death-becomes-her-sparkcon
Pj and Bruce with our dear dancer friend Marie Garlock, performed our 3rd iteration of “Death Becomes Her,” at the Contemporary Art Museum (CAM) for Raleigh’s annual Arts Festival “sparkCON.” Bruce also started a new job at Total Wine.


Here’s a few of our fave pics of time with our little guy this year!  Jamming out around the house, lots of dancing and chasing.


Cardiphonia launched its first Kickstarter campaign to fund a project exploring the biblical canticles.  You can Listen here. Could not have done this without the support of Erik Newby and many, many friends.

Thanksgiving in Asheville – We relished time with our friends the Newby’s and the Quinn’s, boldly executing a vacation with three babies in tow!


Pj invited a number of the area’s best performers to do a reading of Peter Shaffer’s The Gift of the Gorgon at a new coffee shop called Cafe De Los Muertos.  It was awesome!

The Mantle-Tree was the decorative highlight of xmas this year.  With a 16 month-old tearing around we decided the decorations needed a higher altitude for safety!

Here’s some Christmas/Epiphany music for you to check out as well! You can listen and download it HERE.


Two major themes in our hearts as we look back on the past year:  We are thankful for God’s faithfulness through the love and support of our friends.  We continue to feel honored and truly blessed to interact with so many amazing artists, academics and creatives in NC, around the country, and in the UK!  You are most likely one of those. Thanks for blessing our lives this year.

And now we leave you to enjoy your own Epiphany Season.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!
XO, Bruce and PJ


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