St. Mark's Sanctuary Choir Crowned Best Gospel Choir In The Dallas Area At Verizon's How Sweet The Sound

DALLAS, TX — St. Mark’s Sanctuary Choir of Maumille, Ark., was named regional winner of Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound competition and received $10,000 and other prizes.  The choir will go on to represent the Dallas area at the grand finale in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Nov. 4.  The first runner up prize of $5,000 was awarded to St. John Music Ministry.  St. John Music Ministry also won Verizon’s People’s Choice Award and $5,000.

The evening was hosted by GRAMMY® Award-winning gospel legends Donald Lawrence and Yolanda Adams, and award-winning artists CeCe Winans, Hezekiah Walker, Erica Campbell and Fred Hammond served as judges.  

In addition, participating choirs were encouraged to collect and donate no-longer used wireless phones to HopeLine from Verizon, collected more than 700 phones.   St. John Music Ministry received the HopeLine Champion Award for collecting the most phones.  Verizon, through HopeLine, will award a $2,500 grant in support of a domestic violence program chosen by St. John Music Ministry.  The long-running HopeLine program puts the nation’s most reliable wireless network to work in the community by turning no-longer-used wireless phones into support for those affected by domestic violence.  Proceeds from HopeLine are used to provide wireless phones and airtime to victims of domestic violence and cash grants to local shelters and non-profit organizations that focus on domestic violence prevention, awareness and advocacy.

Since the launch of the cell phone recycling program in 2001, HopeLine from Verizon has collected more than 8 million phones, given out more than $14.2 million in cash grants, and distributed more than 123,000 phones with more than 400 million minutes of free wireless service for use by domestic violence survivors. 

For more information on Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound competition and to view photos from the regional competition, go to  To learn more about HopeLine from Verizon, visit

About Verizon WirelessVerizon Wireless operates the nation’s largest 4G LTE network and largest, most reliable 3G network.  The company serves 94.2 million retail customers, including 88.8 million retail postpaid customers.  Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with 78,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ) and Vodafone (LSE, NASDAQ: VOD).  For more information, visit  To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at