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MC Worship Collective Gaining Music Following at Mississippi College

MC Worship Collective
MC Worship Collective

Their original music, and live performances are winning over fans hearing Mississippi College’s Worship Collective. Their songs seek to glorify God and encourage listeners.

“Merciful” is the title of the group’s first recording by MC student vocalist Mark Soileau of Mandeville, Louisiana. Recorded in the historic sanctuary at First Baptist Church Clinton and released in early October, there are more songs to come this Fall. Mark is pursuing worship leadership studies at the Christian university in Clinton.

Making the Music Department’s MC Worship Collective so compelling is that students serve as the songwriters. Their recordings are mixed and mastered at Blue Sky Studios in Jackson. Tyler Kemp, an MC music professor, worked as the project’s recording engineer.

A total of six original worship songs are part of the new package of wonderful music. Singers combine with guitarists, along with musicians on the keyboards and drums to praise the Lord.

The newest release is “Surely as the Sun,” penned by MC communication major Ryan Warnick of Tupelo. It hit on social media on October 15, with the song “Narrow Way” written by worship leadership major Madison Pillow of Memphis coming October 22.

The series of new songs each week continues through mid-November.

Will Bishop, the MC Worship Collective director, is delighted to see the new musical ensemble blossom and achieve goals along the way. MC Worship Collective serves as a cornerstone of MC’s new worship leadership program. There are three separate bands in the music ensemble.

“First, we want to teach students how to write well-crafted worship music and then give our bands the opportunity to share these songs with the world,” Bishop said. “We hope that these songs will bless and encourage those who hear them.”

In addition, creation of the MC Worship Collective will serve as a Mississippi College recruiting tool.

“We’re hoping that many potential students will see these videos or hear the songs on Spotify,” Bishop said. It should encourage them to discover more about Mississippi College, the university’s worship degree and the MC Worship Collective.

The goals are ambitious: the new six music videos will reach 100,000 views by the end of the academic year in May 2019. “It’s a lofty goal. We’re going to need every MC student, parent, alum and friend to share these videos by social media,” Bishop said.

It’s best to check Instagram (@mcworshipcollective) for more updates, says Bishop, a professor of worship leadership at the Baptist-affiliated university.

Other songs were written by former MC student Haigan Hancock of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. It is titled “Glory’s Streets” and will be released October 29. Hancock transferred to LSU this Fall.

“Beggars at the Banquet” is the worship song penned by communication major Jared Vardaman of Morton. It’s set for release November 5. Will Bishop wrote the final song in the series “Oh, the Depths.” Its debut on social media will be on November 12.

In her third year in MC Worship Collective, Madison Pillow loves the people she connects with. “We’re diverse, but we come together with a common goal – to praise our King.”

The entire group, Pillow said, is talented and encouraging, but seeks to improve their musical skills with every practice. “We strive to be excellent in all we do for the glory of God, but there is always grace for when we make mistakes.”

The group, she said, combines a love for music and for Jesus. “Worship Collective is perfect for MC’s mission.”

A 21-year-old senior is expected to graduate in May, the first in the worship leadership program. Graduate school is the next stop for Madison Pillow, who plans to pursue a master’s of divinity. At the same time, she hopes to serve a worship/girls ministry at a church. Writing more worship songs and recording them, is part of her future, too.

Several MC students in MC Worship Collective are from the metro Jackson area. They include: Madeline Stanteen of Clinton, Maya Thompson of Jackson, and Courtney Brooks, Kaitlyn Malouf, Mason Crowe and Chandler Greenwood, all of Madison. A total of 45 students are members of the MC Worship Collective. Nearly every academic major at Mississippi College is represented in the group on the Clinton campus.

For more information, contact Will Bishop at or 601-925-3445.