My almost-90-year-old mother had a beautiful, confident singing voice as a younger woman and a commanding presence in front of a congregation. She often sang solos in worship and her singing and piano playing were amongst her gifts from and to God. She doesn't sing much anymore. She no longer gets to church, where she could join in singing hymns. Her singing may also be affected by her Parkinson's Disease, which affects motor control, facial affect, and memory as it progresses.
I was interested to see that there is a choir in Toronto for those with Parkinson's and it is making a difference for the 28 participants. They feel that their confidence has been boosted by the experience, not to mention making a joyful noise. It may also affect how others perceive them:
"Within a hundred milliseconds of seeing someone else smile or frown, we are smiling or frowning," said Frank Russo, a psychology professor at Ryerson University in Toronto. "We're mirroring what the other person is doing. And that's one of the things that is absent in Parkinson's. It's the absence of mirroring that is leading to some of the deficit in understanding other people's emotions."
There are choristers, music ministers, and other church musicians who read this blog. You already know the benefits of making music as praise. It's good to hear of yet another benefit of music.