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Mr. Dinn and His Awards

Last Sunday, January 25th, our family attended the piano recital of our grandchildren Joey and Leila and the awarding of trophies and honors to the piano students of Mr.Gary Ginn at the University of Maryland School of Music Clarise Smith Performing Arts Center in College Park, Maryland.

Thirteen students of Mr. Dinn of different grade levels played their pieces before a group of parents, grandparents and friends.

After the recital, Mr. Dinn presented the 2017 Awards and Honors for outstanding music achievement in music theory examinations, musicianshiip, etc. issued by the Maryland State Music Teachers Association and himself. One could see the joy and excitement of his students as they were called and presented their trophies, ribbons and pins.

But what makes this awards giving to his students special and out of the ordinary is the Music Service Awards, given by Mr. Dinn, not for piano skills and achievements, but for service. Mr. Dinn considers this award an equally important, if not more important, award. It is called the St. Mother Teresa Music Service Award, in honor of Mother Teresa of Calcutta who spent her life in the service of the poor and the needy.

Mr. Dinn is a highly regarded piano teacher for more than 35 years. But I think what makes Mr. Dinn more than a piano teacher is the value he attaches to service, which he aims to inculcate in his students in an unobtrusive way, and which is the hallmark of his music teaching career. Mr. Dinn holds his students recitals in nursing homes for the elderly residents there to give them the opportunity to listen to good music. Last Christmas his students also sang to the residents of the Little Sisters of the Poor in Washington, D.C.

The music mission of Mr. Dinn is not only to make good pianists but to make music a vehicle of service. This inclusion of service in his piano teaching and awards giving to his students puts him a notch above ordinary piano teachers.

His music teaching career is a career of service. In Catholic parlance, this a way to evangelize, to share the faith, to share what truly matters in life -- service to others. #

As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. 1 Peter 4:10-11

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