All Good Gifts

L Nelson

All good gifts around us
Are sent from heaven above,
Then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord
For all His love.

This time last year, Linda Nelson was hospitalized with four infections, a result of her 12 year-old donor kidney beginning to shut down. As she lay there she wondered if she would ever leave the hospital.

Fast forward one year, and a very healthy, energetic Nelson is singing and dancing in the musical Godspell at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Burnsville.

Thanks to a donor swap program, Prince of Peace’s lead pastor, Jeff Marian, was able to donate a kidney to a patient in Atlanta, GA six months ago and in turn a donor there donated their kidney to Nelson.

“How do you even begin to thank someone for a gift like that?” Nelson muses thoughtfully. Her return to health meant a return to her passions, so when she saw an audition notice for the spring production of Godspell, she couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate her own new beginning.

Godspell tells the story of Jesus and his disciples, according to the gospel of Matthew, and includes classic songs such as “All Good Gifts,” “Prepare Ye,” and “Day by Day.” “I love ‘Day by Day’,” enthuses Nelson. “And,” she adds with a big smile, “We have a blast. It’s a lot of hard work, but it’s really fun, and we all really enjoy each other.”

Note: This story was shared by Jennifer Cockerill, the director of Prince of Peace’s production of Godspell. You can see Linda Nelson, along with 15 other talented artists, as Godspell takes the stage April 16-19 at Prince of Peace. Performances are 6:30 on April 16, 7:30 on April 17 and 18 and 1:30 on April 19. Seating is general admission for each performance, and in lieu of ticket sales, an audience offering will be welcomed at intermission for the production and the ongoing work of Prince of Peace in the community. 

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