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Bruce and Nancy Muskrat - Musicians on Mission

Musicians on Mission
Bruce and Nancy Muskrat

Fort Worth, Texas
December 24, 2008

As they say, the best laid plans of mice and men — or even of Muskrats and men — sometimes do not come to pass. What used to be a monthly newsletter, then a quarterly letter, then a semi-annual letter, has finally become an annual recap of the year. When we “retired” from the International Mission Board, we thought that our lives would not be as hectic as when we lived in Argentina, but they have become even more so. But when you enjoy what you are doing as much as we are, life is full and happy. We are grateful to the Lord for the wonderful year we have had, and look forward to see what He has in store for next year. 
At the top of this past year’s highlights are, of course, our precious grandkids, Luke & Claire. They are the special spark that keeps us going. We were privileged to keep them for a week in July while Daniel & Sara celebrated their eighth wedding anniversary in Cancún. What a great time we had! — going to the park, the zoo, and rediscovering “Chuck E. Cheese.” Claire celebrated her first birthday on July 19, and Luke turned three on September 29. “Nana” made a little lamb costume for Claire to wear in the daycare Christmas pageant on December 18. Luke was the angel Gabriel and had his first big dramatic part saying, “I bring you Good News!” 
It is always a joy anytime we can get together with all of our kids. All of the children are doing well and are busy with their jobs. Daniel continues as a vice president, chief technology officer, and director of network security at Guaranty Bond Bank in Mount Pleasant, TX. Sara changed jobs and is now working as a speech therapist at Titus Regional Medical Center. Amy & Danny live in Hewitt, TX. Amy is an LMSW Care Manager at the Providence Health System Sub-Acute Care Unit in Waco, and Danny is a fireman-paramedic with the Harker Heights Fire Department. Andy & Heather became homeowners this year, moving to Mansfield, TX, so that Andy could be closer to the church in Cedar Hill where he is minister of music. Andy continues his master’s studies in church music at B.H. Carroll Theological Institute. Heather graduated in May with her master’s degree in piano pedagogy and is teaching piano in studios in Southlake, Arlington, & Mansfield. Our family increased some this year — no, not more grandkids, but some “granddogs!” They say that having a dog is often a prelude to having kids, so we’ll see what happens by this time next year!
In March, Bruce and Nancy traveled to England as part of B. H. Carroll Theological Institute’s Oxford Study Program. Bruce’s dad, Jim Muskrat, was able to join them for the two-week study tour based out of Regent’s Park College in Oxford. The Muskrats accompanied ten PhD students, in addition to faculty and other guests on the tour which included the Cotswolds, Evensong at Salisbury Cathedral, Stonehenge, the Bunyan Meeting House, Cambridge University, the American Cemetery, the home and church of C. S. Lewis, William Carey’s church in Moulton, John Newton’s church in Olney, Hampton Court Palace, Windsor Castle, the Abbey and Baptist church at Tewkesbury, Anne Hathaway’s cottage, William Shakespeare’s home in Stratford-upon-Avon, an evening at the Royal Shakespeare Courtyard Theatre, and day trips to Wales and London. Nancy wrote a four-part short story for Luke told through the eyes of Tewkesbeary, a little British bear dressed in a royal guard's uniform. Each part of the photo-illustrated story traces a different leg of the journey through England and Wales. Bruce and Nancy are scheduled to go with BHCTI’s 2009 Oxford Study Program, which will include a 4-day trip to Scotland. 
The Muskrats have had various music and ministry opportunities throughout the year that have kept them busy. In April, they traveled to Arkansas to present a program for the Senior Adult Day luncheon at First Baptist Church of Geyer Springs where friends and former missionary colleagues, Ted & Mary Stanton, direct the senior adult ministry. The Muskrats were also invited by the International Mission Board to lead the worship sessions and serve as facilitators for the 2008 Emeritus Week at the Board’s International Learning Center outside of Richmond, VA. Bruce and Nancy presented a two-piano worship program on September 7 at Agape Baptist Church in Fort Worth where they are members. The following week, they again performed on two pianos at the Omni Dallas Hotel for the The 2008 Friends of Carroll Gala, the kick-off dinner for Carroll Institute’s New Horizons Campaign, officially inaugurating the Steinway grand piano donated to the Institute by the Chair of the Board of Governors. Andy Muskrat provided the dinner music for the Gala. On November 18, the Muskrats presented a 90- minute two-piano concert featuring works of Mozart, Brahms, Rachmaninoff, and Argentine composers at the South Campus of Tarrant County College. The program was presented at the invitation of Dr. Oscar Dressler, head of the piano department and former seminary student of the Muskrats in Argentina. With all of the piano concerts to prepare, Bruce and Nancy took a leave of absence from singing with the Schola Cantorum of Texas. Bruce continued his monthly concerts with the Singing Men of North Central Texas. It was especially enjoyable for him this year since Andy also became a member.

One of the highlights of the year was the Argentine Mission Reunion held July 4-5 in Frisco, TX. Over 200 people attended, including current, former & emeritus missionaries, MK’s, Argentine families, and others who had some connection with the Argentine mission. It was a wonderful time of renewing contacts and catching up on the lives of those who have served in Argentina.

May the peace, joy, and love of this Christmas Season,
 which comes from Christ the Savior 
of all mankind, 
be yours

We send you our love, prayers, and best wishes for a New Year full 
of God's grace and 

Bruce & Nancy Muskrat

Bruce and Nancy Muskrat are at B. H. Carroll Theological Institute, where Bruce serves as as Professor of Church Music and Missions and is also Director of Business Affairs. Now "emeritus" missionaries to Argentina, the Muskrats served 29 years under appointment of the International Mission Board, SBC. Appointed in 1977 as seminary music teachers, the Muskrats taught courses in church music and worship in the International Baptist Theological Seminary, Buenos Aires (1979-2000), and ministered through music evangelism and participation in church planting through the mission's Pro-Meta team. Bruce served as Administrative Support Leader for the Argentine Baptist Mission, the organization of  Southern Baptist missionaries in that country. 


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      rev. 22-Jun-2013