Celebrating the Presence of the Lord

Celebrating the Presence of the Lord

It is right to give the Lord thanks and praise “ (Psalm 92:1). These were the first words that came to mind when I thought about Celebrating. Next, however, words came from an old time worship icebreaker, the Bugaloo, that Bobo Burns, a man who celebrated God’s presence, led at Summerfest Camp.

Bobo, who I met in 1990 at a Christian Camp, brought  joy into worship and all he did. He had a way of celebrating the Lord that I wanted to model myself.

Bobo, sadly,  passed away in 2009 due to health problems he had had his entire life.  Countless Facebook memories came in at that time about Bobo. I facebooked my memory of the first Bugaloo I ever  saw:

Bobo began by shouting “Let me see your Bugaloo.” 400+ junior highers shouted back “What did you say?” Three times this was repeated. Then everyone broke into an energy releasing dance  jumping, twisting  and turning. More verses followed such as:  “Let me see you fry like bacon”  followed by 400 students sizzling on the floor) or “Let me see your Richard Nixon” (followed by 400 students  impersonating Richard Nixon), etc. Then the ending verse:  “Let me hear you praise the Lord”,  “What did you say?,” “Let me hear you praise the Lord,” “What did you say” . . .etc. Finally, the powerful ending: 400 students together yelling, “Praise . . .The. . .Lord!!!”


In 1997 I sent a group from my first church at  Summerfest. I visited midweek. There was Bobo still working, loving Jesus. I greeted him and then begged him, “Is there any way you could do the Bugaloo today? I need to hear it.”

He did. And years later I still enjoy the memory of that day, of my old voice joining with 13- and 14-year-old brothers and sisters celebrating God. Celebrating God’s presence together.

It was right and good. “Praise the Lord!!!”


Bruce Hillyer, Associate Pastor

1 Comment
  • Rex Cooper

    December 4, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    I spent many nights with Steve "Bobo" Burns serving on TEC teams. He was one of the greatest listeners I have ever encountered. He was quiet and unassuming but he had so many Jesus-like qualities that he was able to gently guide youth to discover the truth for themselves. The world is a little less bright with out Bobo reflecting the light of Jesus to the students of Edina and the TEC universe. Thanks for remembering my pal Bobo, he is "Bugalooing" with the Saints. The last thing that happened at his memorial celebration was a rousing rendition of the last verse of the Bugaloo – "Let me hear you praise the Lord. What’s that you say?", it was quite a tribute to a great man.