Serving the Voices Blog

News Posts

2016 Annual Report

By: Simeon Lohrmann (Executive Director)

Whether you have been connected to RYFO for years, or you are brand new to the network, this update is for you. Detailed in the pages of our annual report you’ll read testimonies that give a glimpse into the impact RYFO has had in the musician community this past year. Additionally you’ll read about how we’re working to expand our reach and influence over the next decade and beyond.

The vision God has revealed to our team is bigger than any one leader or organization, it can only be achieved through collaboration and financial generosity. We value your support and pray for it to grow in the New Year!


Click Here to give a tax deductible year-end gift


RYFO is a ministry of CRM (Church Resource Ministries), a global missions agency and 501(c)(3) based in Anaheim, California. CRM is a member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.

Axiom Church Podcast feat: RYFO

RYFO Team Leader Simeon Lohrmann recently sat in as a guest on the Axiom Church Podcast. Listen as Simeon, and the leaders of Axiom, discusses their passion to eliminate the divide between the church and the musician community.

Prayer for the Voices

Prayer for the Voices

Next Saturday (the 12th) at 12PM PST we are hosting our quarterly conference call for RYFO staff members, Host Home families, and financial partners to join together in prayer. If you believe in the mission of RYFO we invite you to commit to join us in “Prayer for the Voices.” Here are some ways you can focus your prayers:

-Health and safety for the bands who have started to hit the road now that winter is ending

-Provision for the RYFO staff members who raise missionary support through financial partnerships

-Effective recruiting of new Host Home families in areas of the country where we need to expand our network (mainly the East and West coasts)

-Blessing over our continuing efforts to develop and launch our Artist Chaplain program in 2016

Thank you in advance for those of you who will be praying with us. Please email our Communications Coordinator any insights you receive while you are praying: rebecca@ryfo.org.

A Campaign for the Whole Artist

Whether on the road or rooted in the local music scene, the musician community is a world clouded with hopelessness. For many musicians the glamour they project from the stage life in stark contrast with the realities of their lives backstage. Too often life backstage is characterized by deep emptiness and isolation. In search of something to fill the void; drugs, alcohol, pornography, and other sexual exploits are common among faith-based and secular musicians.

So this year-end we’re inviting you to partner with us in caring for the Whole Artist: Mind, Body & Spirit.

THROUGH THE POWER OF PARTNERSHIP; YOU CAN TRANSFORM MUSICIAN’S LIVES


3 ways to partner

Purchase a limited edition RYFO T-shirt from our friends at Modfund: Click Here

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Stay caffeinated with The RYFO Blend from our friends at Pneuma Coffee: Click Here

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Join the RYFO FAM, to be a part of our committed team of financial partners who give a minimum of Five-A-Month: Click Here

Members of the RYFO FAM receive a RYFO Key, as a symbol of our partnership, and our FAM booklet which tells the ‘Serving the Voices’ story

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Prayer for the Voices

Prayer for the Voices

This coming Saturday (the 28th) at 2PM PST we’ll be hosting a nationwide conference call for our staff members, Host Home families, and our financial partners to join together in prayer. If you believe in the mission of RYFO then we invite you to put down your Thanksgiving leftovers, or take a brief break from your Christmas shopping to join us in prayer.

Not sure what to pray? Here are some items we’ll be praying for:

-The launch of our Chaplain program and the expansion of our Host Home network in 2016

-Blessing over RYFO’s existing Host Home families as they head into a New Year serving bands

-That the light of the Gospel would permeate the music industry and transform musician’s lives

Still looking for more guidance on how to pray? Take a look at this article on Praying for the Voices.

We believe our prayers are heard and that our prayers change things in Heaven. When Christ instructed His disciples on how to pray, one of the instructions He gave was to pray like this, “May your Kingdom come, may your will be done on earth, as it is in Heaven” (Matthew 6:10). We believe that God’s will is to see the music industry impacted and transformed for His Kingdom.

Will you join us in this powerful time of prayer? 

How We Will Be Serving the Voices in 2015

RYFO Serving 2015

By: Simeon Lohrmann (Team Leader)

Serving the Voices the past 6 years has broadened our understanding of family and taught us about the power of sacrificial service.

As a staff we are continually amazed by the families we are blessed to partner with through our Host Home program. Some of these families discovered RYFO through an advertisement, others stumbled upon us while browsing online, and still others were referred by someone to check us out. Regardless of the way in which they happened upon our ministry, God was at work in every case, directing these radical families to join us in Serving the Voices.

As it stands today RYFO has Host Homes in 26 States and 1 Canadian Province. We are a growing network of servants who understand the needs of touring musicians, and who have said YES to the call to respond to those needs.

One of our most tenured families, the Lubs, recently reported that over the past 5 years they’ve hosted 239 different musicians, served 1,214 individual meals, and made 564 beds. Can you imagine the conversations they’ve had during those meals, and the friendships that have been formed with bands who have stayed with them during multiple tours? It’s truly amazing. These families are portraying the love of Christ through Radical Hospitality.

I count myself blessed to be leading this amazing ministry and I’m excited to share a snapshot of what’s ahead in 2015.

The RYFO FAM

Last week we mailed gift packages to the 30 individuals/families who currently make regular financial investments in our ministry. We’ve chosen to name this committed group The RYFO FAM. Without their partnership our ministry could not exist. FAM is about transforming the lives of musicians who are outside of the local church, by providing backstage access for the Gospel and discipleship.

In the coming weeks we will begin extending an invitation for others to join this group by committing to invest a minimum amount of “Five-A-Month.” Through the expansion of The RYFO FAM we are confident that in 2015 we can begin investing more resources back into our Host Homes than we currently allocate towards our administrative expenses. This financial transition will enable us to actively recruit and better equip our Host Home network, as well as improve the platform we developed for bands to connect with our homes while on the road.

A RYFO Tour

We firmly believe that the best step forward is to go deep with the Host Homes we are currently partnered with. In order to do that we need to invest time being with them. So we devised a plan to do just that.

This coming summer my family and I will be traveling around the country to deepen our relationship with RYFO’s existing Host Homes, and to raise awareness for our ministry. We plan to cover as much of the country as possible, including areas where RYFO is looking to expand by recruiting new Host Homes.

RYFO Chaplains

After many years of dreaming about serving musicians in ways that extend beyond Host Homes, 2015 is the year for that vision to take form. Last week our staff began the process of developing a Chaplaincy program for the musician community. This program will be relevant to both local and touring musicians. Chaplains will proactively bring truth and hope backstage in venues and concert halls around the country, while also being available to connect with bands as they come through town. Some Chaplains may even find themselves on tour with a band. The options are as diverse as the needs for which they exist.


If you are interested in any of these initiatives we would love to hear from you

You can contact us by emailing info@ryfo.org

The Archetype of RYFO

Jason Wisdom Becoming the Archetype

By: Simeon (Team Leader)

From his years as a touring musician to his recent experience as a classroom teacher, Jason Wisdom is the archetype of the RYFO staff. Jason reached out to RYFO Founder Nick Greenwood earlier this year wondering if our team could use his talents.

Fast forward nearly 6 months…

After completing a formal application and assessment process, we are elated to announce that Jason has officially joined our team as our Discipleship Coach. In this role Jason will combine his experiences as a touring musician (with Becoming the Archetype) with his passion for defending the faith (becauseitstrue.com), to help develop training on the process of discipling musicians. Jason’s background, skill set, and personal passion make him the ideal candidate for this role.

If you’re excited as we are about Jason’s addition to the RYFO staff, then we invite you to support the training he and his wife will be going through 2 weeks from today: Support The Wisdom’s.

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Serving the Voices at Warped Tour

Vans Warped Tour

By: Simeon Lohrmann (RYFO Team Leader)

With over 100 bands performing in 32 states in under 2 months, Warped Tour is a MASSIVE undertaking! This summer Warped is celebrating its 20th anniversary, and while the tour is celebrating its 20th year; we’re celebrating our 1st time having a RYFO presence on the tour!

Since the tour kicked off last month in Texas, our volunteers have been spreading the word about our Host Home network, and looking for opportunities to build relationships with the bands on the tour. When it’s all said and done 21 different volunteers will have represented RYFO at select tour dates in 6 different states. With one date remaining for our volunteers in Atlanta next week, we wanted to share about our experience thus far.

A Warm Welcome

Since our first appearance on the tour at the San Antonio date, the bands have been wowed by our desire to care for their needs on the road. Some of the bands went so far as to stop what they were doing to sign up on the spot. Comments like, “This is the best idea I’ve ever heard!” have been repeatedly noted by our volunteers as they share about RYFO. Simply put, RYFO has been warmly welcomed into the Warped Tour Community!

One notable, and somewhat comical comment made by an artist at the Pomona date went something like this…(a phone conversation while walking up to our booth in the catering area) “I’m about to get lunch (brief pause while reading our sign) and apparently I’m about to get a shower!” We proceeded to share with this artist, as we have with most of the musicians on the tour, about the hospitality of our amazing Host Homes all around the country. He was blown away!

In contrast, some of the artists we connected with thought RYFO was simply too good to be true. When Audrey Thompson, RYFO’s Host Home Coordinator was asked, “So what’s the catch?” by one of the more skeptical artists. She responded plainly, “Well actually there is a catch. We’re doing it all for Jesus.” To which the artist responded, “That’s a good catch!

To add to all the positive receptivity from the Warped bands, RYFO’s acceptance on the tour was fully cemented when Warped Tour’s founder Kevin Lyman took it upon himself to approach our table and personally thank us for serving their artist community.

With such a warm welcome across the board our staff has concluded one thing for sure – This summer won’t be the last time we’re Serving the Voices at Warped Tour!

 

A big shout out and thank you to our amazing volunteers!

 

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RYFO at Warped Tour

Vans Warped Tour

RYFO at Warped Tour
By: Kiah (Summer Intern)

We are excited to share that for the first time ever RYFO will have a presence on Warped Tour!

We will have volunteers stationed at select Warped Tour dates this summer to offer our services to the performing bands and give them a chance to check out our new mobile app! This is the message we’ll be sharing with the bands:

RYFO business card SIDE A-page-001

Our volunteers will also be available to encourage and pray for the bands. Please keep us in your prayers as we finalize our preparations.

Over the next few weeks we will be posting pictures, updates, and prayer requests from our volunteers, so keep an eye out for that! Feel free to say hi if you find yourself at any of these dates:

6/14/2014 San Antonio, TX (AT&T Center)

6/17/2014 Albuquerque, NM (Isleta Amphitheater)

6/20/2014 Pomona, CA (Pomona Fairplex)

6/22/2014 Ventura, CA (Seaside Park)

6/25/2014 Chula Vista, CA (Sleep Train Amphitheatre)

7/2/2014 Maryland Heights, MO (Verizon Wireless Amphitheater)

7/24/2014 Atlanta, GA (Aaron’s Amphitheatre)

Serving the Voices at SXSW

HM Magazine Music for Good Showcase

Serving the Voices at SXSW
By: Taylor Adkins

When I found out about a year ago that I would be moving from Virginia to San Antonio Texas, I knew that I would only be a couple hours away from one of the largest music festivals in the world: SXSW. Having just come on staff with RYFO as the Artist Coordinator, I began working on a plan with our staff to have a presence at SXSW in order to build new band relationships and deepen our existing ones. As we began working on plans for SXSW, I reached out to David Stagg (owner and CEO of HM Magazine) to get his feedback about the needs he sees most with the bands he interviews. Before I knew it, he was offering RYFO the opportunity to be a part of their SXSW Showcase. This was the door into the festival that we’d been looking for!

Fast forward a couple months and I am arriving at The Ranch in Austin, TX to kickoff a day full of great music. The showcase lineup included performances from Yesterday as Today, Darkness Divided, Silent Planet, PhinehasEveryone Dies in Utah, ’68 (first ever live performance), and Sleeping Giant. As a long time reader of HM Magazine, I couldn’t have felt more blessed to have a role in the showcase. I got to the venue around noon and met David Stagg for the first time in person. He expressed how excited he was to have RYFO partnering with them for the showcase.

Shortly after my arrival the Harvey’s (shown below) arrived, RYFO’s Host Home family in Cedar Park, TX, just north of Austin. While I was the staff member at SXSW, they were the seasoned veterans! The Harvey’s have been hosting bands long before RYFO began, they run their own venue, and Ian Harvey is in the band UGLYTWIN who has had the opportunity to share the stage with many of the bands RYFO serves. The Harvey’s arranged to order and pick up all the food for the bands that day and even brought care packages in the form of a plate of home made cookies for all the bands in attendance.

Taylor and the Harveys

Before and during the showcase I had the opportunity to speak with many of the performing band members about our desire to have the church walk alongside them as artists and for RYFO to be a medium for that opportunity to take place. Between the hugs, prayers, and even some tears shed by members of bands I spoke with, one thing is for sure…these bands need RYFO! I don’t mean RYFO as in our staff, RYFO the brand, or RYFO the website, but RYFO in terms of the missionaries that make up our organization.

There are many temptations, struggles, and obstacles that plague bands with doubt, depression, and loneliness out on the road. The time spent away from close friends and families can be incredibly tough. These bands are pouring everything they have into their art with few opportunities to be poured into. I want every single person involved with RYFO to know the impact you are having on the lives of these musicians and the ripple effect in their own lives and the multitudes of people they reach with their music.

Thank you to all of our volunteers, the Harvey’s, David Stagg, HM Magazine, the bands who allow us to bless them, and to God for giving RYFO the vision and the opportunity to show the love of Christ by being a servant to these bands. We look forward to many more opportunities to continue Serving the Voices!