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Meet Mark Schultz

SchultzMThe realization was staring Mark Schultz right in the face.

It came late one night last year when the inspirational singer was feeding his infant son Ryan and dropped the bottle, making a crashing sound on the floor.

“(Ryan’s) eyes shot open really big and looked at me and all of a sudden he started laughing from the bottom of his toes to the top of his head.”

Schultz suddenly found himself choked up and with tears flowing down his face.

“My whole life I’ve wanted to meet a blood relative,” said the singer, who was adopted as an infant and never met his biological parents.

And then he looked at his son.

“That was my laugh….those were my eyes,” he said.

“I had finally met a blood relative, and I was holding him.”

Parenthood had already impacted the Kansas native - one of the songs on his latest CD is titled “I Haven’t Even Met You Yet.”

“He was still in the oven when I wrote that,” Schulz chuckled of the song which says, “You’ve already stolen my heart….. and I haven’t even met you yet.”

The 42-year-old Schultz also took real life inspiration for another new song – the CD’s title track, “All Things Possible.”

The song came out of his 2007 cross- country bike ride during which he raised more than $250,000 for The James Fund, a foundation of Family Christian Stores which supports work with widows and orphans. Its mission is taken from James 1:27.

“There were mornings during that trip that I would wake up and see those mountains and pray that God would move them for me,” he recalled.

“By the time that ride was done I had to say, ‘God, this is your part of the trip – you have to take over.

“That to me, was the beginning of ‘All Things Possible,” he said of his perseverance on the 63-day trek from California to New Hampshire.

Schultz said he can keep singing that song because of the ways that God keeps showing up in his life.
Schultz studied marketing at Kansas State University but was always gifted musically and had a knack for songwriting.

He moved to Nashville to pursue his music, but soon got a job as a youth group leader at a local church – a spot where he remained for eight years until music took over.

He was “discovered” when he performed at a fundraising concert at the historic Ryman Auditorium and was signed to a record deal, with his self-titled debut album appearing in 2000.

Schultz story-telling songs such as “He’s My Son,” “Letters From War” and “Walking Her Home” made instant connections with fans and Christian radio listeners.

He disclosed his own past as an adopted infant in his ballad “Everything to Me.”

In 2008 Schultz visited Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids, sharing with young kids and doing a concert in the adjacent Spectrum Health chapel.

The brief concert was televised on the hospital’s closed-circuit TV system.

One of the ballads he performed - “I Am” - pictures God as “the healer of the broken.”

It was that song that inspired yet another of the artist’s new compositions.

“One night about a year ago as I was singing that song (‘I Am”), I looked out at the audience saw this girl in a wheelchair,” Schultz said.

“And when I sang that line ‘healer of the broken,’ she lifted her arms into the air like she was crossing a finish line.”

Right then, said the artist, he knew he would write a song dedicated to her.

The result is “One Day” and includes the lyric “one day she will touch the healer’s hand…one day be whole again.”
Schultz is married to Kate Celauro, a doctor who is an OB-GYN specialist. Completing her medical studies several years ago, the artist said there may be a medical-mission mix in their future.

“If we would dream about what could be, instead of just what feels comfortable, perhaps she could be a doctor who leads mission trips to places where people can help in orphanages and teach women’s health and medical help,” Schultz mused.

Schultz has a mission trip of his own scheduled for the end of May. He’s going to Mexico to visit the same orphanages that originally inspired him to make the bike ride for The James Fund.

“I’m doing a concert there the last night after the kids do a talent show,” said the artist.

For more information visit www.markschultzmusic.com.

Also on the bill at the local concert:

*Singer-songwriter Aaron Shust whose signature song is “My Savior, My God, which won a 2007 Dove Award as Song of the Year.

* Jonny Diaz with his best-known song “More Beautiful You.”

In Case You Go:

*Mark Schultz and the “All Things Possible” tour, with special guests Aaron Shust and Jonny Diaz.
6 p.m. Sun. April 21, Three Mile Project youth outreach center, 3050 Walkent Dr. NW, Grand Rapids
Tickets begin at $5, with VIP/front row seats at $25. Available from www.showclix.com. For more information visit www.3mp.org or call 616-784-THE3.
Author Information
Terry DeBoer
Terry is journalist who writes for newspapers, magazines, newsletters and websites. His most frequented “beat” is arts and entertainment. He is married with two children and lives in Grand Rapids.

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