Last week, we asked what you thought our theme song was. Many of your attempts were entertaining, but none were correct. They ranged from "Sweet Home, Tuscarora," to "Friends are Friends Forever." By far, the most commonly guessed song was "To God Be the Glory." This is Tuscarora's tagline - but when a theme song was instituted in 1992 it was decided to pull from a different part of Tuscarora's history and preserve a legacy of impact.
Barney Jensen, a charter board member of the Conference Center who served as its secretary until his death in 1991, was valued by all for his warmth and wise counsel. As a young man, he was called to active duty in the United States Armed Forces during World War II. During his experience he was inspired to write a chorus titled "Stop and Think What He Means to You."
Stop and Think
Stop and think what He means to you,
when you're all alone.
Thank Him and praise Him for saving you,
when you're all alone.
Give Him the honor and glory
in everything that you do.
Tell out the old, old story
of the Christ who died for you.
Despite being written long before his service at Tuscarora Inn and Conference Center, this chorus in many ways describe the mission of our ministry. Tuscarora is made up of people who desire simply to create a space for people to hear the old, old story and through this work to bring glory and honor to our God. For many years, in fact since the very beginning of Tuscarora as we know it today, Barney Jensen helped to make this possible.
In July of 1992, in commemoration of the 20th anniversary of Tuscarora this chorus was adopted as the theme song. It was a weekend of celebrations, with a Smorgasbord dinner, activities in the afternoon, and a recognition service led by Fred Stoutland. During this service, Gladys Jensen and her two daughters, June and Becky, received a plaque in recognition of the song as Tuscarora's official theme song. A similar plaque hangs in the main office to this day.
Today, Barney's legacy continues at Tuscarora. His wife Gladys, who played an active role alongside her husband in the early years of our ministry, has continued to return year after year with members of her family - immediate and extended. They are playing crucial roles in ministries and continue to allow themselves to be inspired by the words of this chorus - thinking on Christ's sacrifice and bringing glory to His name.