JAMESTOWN - Heritage Ministries, HSBC Bank, RS Motors/Rock City, and Family Life Network will showcase the talents of contemporary Christian musical artists Jeromy and Jennifer Deibler of Far From Home (FFH). With more than 2 million career album sales and multiple Dove Award nominations, the Deiblers will speak, perform and lead worship during Heritage Ministries' 125th anniversary celebration at Heritage Village Retirement Campus in Gerry on May 14.
FFH will later perform a concert that evening at Jefferson Middle School (195 Martin Road, Jamestown) at 7 p.m. Tickets for this event are $7 pre-sale and $10 at the door. Tickets can be purchased by calling 484-7070, on the Web at www.reglenna.com, or by calling Heritage Ministries at 487-6800. Groups of eight or more may purchase pre-sale tickets for $5 each.
FFH was originally formed by Jeromy Deibler and Brian Smith in 1991, soon settling into its final configuration when Michael Boggs and Jennifer Deibler, Jeromy's new bride, joined the band. Working independently, FFH produced and released six albums, while maintaining a productive touring schedule. But when its radio single cracked the Top 20 at Christian Adult Contemporary radio, eventually moving on to become the highest charting single by an independent artist in CCM history, major labels started taking notice. Essential Records signed the band, and multiple No.1 radio hits, Dove Award nominations, and approximately 2 million career album sales followed.
Far From Home.
A decade of road dog work ethic ensued, with Jeromy and Jennifer sharing a tour bus alongside the band and crew for 200-plus dates per year, often sleeping in separate bunks. That kind of lifestyle, Jeromy confesses, is not conducive to intimate conversations.
"In 2006 my wife and I had been married for 11 years. Ten of those years we had been in FFH, touring and traveling together," Jeromy explains. "Over the course of those years we had our first child, Hutch. By the time we got to 2006, we were ready for something else. Burn out was part of it. We were never burned out with playing concerts; it was everything that surrounded it. It was the travel. It was leaving Hutch when we went on the road. It was a strain on our marriage."
After much prayer, counsel and conversation with the other band members, the unanimous decision was made to take an indefinite break. FFH continued to tour for an additional six months, fulfilling all of its obligations, and on the last weekend of September 2006, played its final show.
Unwilling to move until they were sure of God's direction, the Deiblers received both good news and bad news over the next several months: Jennifer was with child; and Jeromy was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.
"I was diagnosed with MS in August of 2007," Jeromy says. "That is when we realized why the Lord hadn't moved us on. We spent the next six months welcoming Sadie-Claire into our family and dealing with my MS treatment."
Jeromy continued to write songs and the couple continued to lead worship as opportunities presented themselves. Then in December 2008, while on their way back from leading worship for a small congregation in Georgia, Jeromy and Jennifer looked at each other and they just knew.
"It was time," Jeromy states. "It was like the Lord had turned the lights off, and then He turned them back on."
FFH was reborn, but this time as an extension of Jeromy and Jennifer Deibler. The days of 200-plus concerts a year were over. Worrying about chart position and album sales were a thing of the past.
"FFH is a part of our lives again, but it is just a part," Jeromy insists. "We are determined to live the kingdom lifestyle of putting our relationships first. Selling albums doesn't fulfill you. It doesn't comfort you when you are lying in bed at night after being diagnosed with MS, while your wife is seven months pregnant. The fact that you've sold two million albums means nothing. It is weightless. What does mean something is that your family is with you, being Jesus to you."
All are welcome to hear them tell their story on May 14. For more information on this event, call 487-6800 or visit www.heritage1886.org.