When Harry Graves made the decision to go on a mission trip, he had to get out a globe to see where he would be going. No little map would do.
"There's a lot of blue under here as we fly by," he said.
Sweetwater Baptist's Rev. Harry Graves will perform with the Sons of Jubal in May.
Rev. Graves, the minister of music at Sweetwater Baptist Church, will be traveling to Moldova, a former republic of the Soviet Union. He is part of a traveling group of music ministers from the Georgia Baptist Convention called the Sons of Jubal.
The group puts on concerts and raises money to start churches in different parts of the world. The Georgia Baptist Convention has partnered with Moldova to provide mission volunteers there until 2005.
Rev. Graves will be one of those singing volunteers through the Sons of Jubal group traveling to Modova from April 29 through May 11.
"Once every two to three years, the Sons of Jubal will do a mission trip," Rev. Graves said. "Through the monies that have been given to the missions offerings that we take up every concert, we are starting three new churches in Moldova."
The Sons of Jubal will be performing several concerts for the people of Moldova during their trip. They also hope through their music people will hear the message of Jesus.
"We're using what music is -- it's the universal language -- to reach them with the evangelical message," Rev. Graves said.
The group sings a variety of songs including spirituals, hymns, classical works, southern gospel and evangelical anthems. They sing with brass, piano and organ accompaniment as well as a cappella.
"We're singing basically on many days both morning and night," Rev. Graves said. "So we've got a very busy schedule."
Besides starting churches and singing, the group will be dedicating the property and new church buildings during the trip.
The Sons of Jubal started in 1954 when a small group of music ministers met for the purpose of forming a male chorus. During that meeting, membership guidelines were drawn up, and the group started a list of concerts. They also decided on a name which was inspired by Genesis 4:21.
Since the start of the Sons of Jubal, the group has grown to include more than 80 members. An annual retreat is held, and concert dates for the year are announced.
Rev. Graves started with the group last year and was asked to participate in this year's mission trip. This will be his first time traveling outside of the United States. The cost of the trip will be $3,500, and Sweetwater Baptist is accepting donations to help defray the cost.
"They have affirmed me in going, allowing me to be gone for basically almost two weeks to be with the group," Rev. Graves said of his church. "I think they are proud to have somebody representing them."
Rev. Graves also said he appreciates everyone's prayers and support. Anyone interested in financially supporting his endeavor can write a check to Sweetwater Baptist Church and include the name "Sons of Jubal" in the "for" section.