Sunday, May 11, 2014  The men of our choir, plus a few others from the church, took over for the women in honor of Mother's Day.  I felt a little uncomfortable not sitting in the choir loft, but I did have a great seat: just about where the cameras were in the video below.  The men sang twice (besides the regular service music):  A version of Surely the Presence of the Lord Is in this Place (Lanny Wolfe, arranged by Elmo Mercer, Lanny Wolfe Music), which they did beautifully.  What blew our socks off, however, was  Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone) (Tomlin/Giglio/Newton/Raney), Hope Publishing, C5644).  We've done it as a whole choir before, but I just love what the men did with it.

This video is courtesy of our friend and fellow choir member, Beth, who deeply regrets not getting the whole song.  It took a while for people to realize that this was a moment to be preserved.  I didn't even think of my own camera, sitting under my chair in my purse.  You may be able to see a longer—though still not complete—version if you are friends with me on Facebook.  Or maybe not; I've discovered that when I share other people's posts, sometimes my friends can see them, and sometimes they can't.  In any case, I'm so grateful to have this much for a reminder of how lovely it all was.  (Heather, you know the guy behind Dad, too.)

 

 

Posted by sursumcorda on Monday, May 12, 2014 at 11:02 am | Edit
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Sunday, May 4, 2014  One of our favorites.

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Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence (Gustav Holst, Galaxy, 1.5019)

 

 

Posted by sursumcorda on Saturday, May 10, 2014 at 12:46 pm | Edit
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I've said before that I love going to a church that has services every single day between Palm Sunday and Easter, and I love even more living close enough that there's little hindrance to attending them.  Beyond ordinary busy-ness, that is, which we're supposed to be giving lower priority during the most momentous week of the Church Year.  Writing this up so late, I'll no doubt miss something, but GEIBTP.

Palm Sunday  I miss processing with whole palm branches instead of little leaves, but at least they were still cut from the yard instead of purchased.  The best part was the music provided by our own little orchestra!  It was great being led by trumpets: we stayed together much better than we usually do while trying to sing All Glory, Laud, and Honor spread out all around the church and the parking lot. The orchestra was amazing: these are middle schoolers, some of whom just started playing their instruments this year. Great music? No. Helpful? Very much so. Inspiring? Yes, yes, yes! And I was really impressed by their endurance.  Other hymns, songs, and anthems:

Ride On! Ride On! In Majesty! (tune: The King's Majesty); A Simple Word of Grace; It Was Finished on the Cross (solo); At the Name of Jesus (tune: King's Weston); O Sacred Head Sore Wounded (tune: Passion Chorale).  Plus an anthem, which I'm pretty sure was the beautiful To Love Our God (Mark Hayes, Hinshaw Music HMC1576).

Have I made it clear enough that our church likes to be active in worship, to sing, and to feast?

Posted by sursumcorda on Thursday, May 1, 2014 at 4:03 pm | Edit
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Sunday, March 30, 2014:

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Christ Hath a Garden (Gerald Near, Belwin-Mills, GCMR3271).

 

 

Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, March 30, 2014 at 2:30 pm | Edit
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Sunday, March 23, 2014:

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I Am Not Afraid (Martin/Larson, Bekenhorst Publishing, BP1863).  (You must click the link to hear this one.)

 

and

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Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone) (Tomlin/Giglio/Newton/Raney), Hope Publishing, C5644).  (You must click the link to hear this one, too.)

 

Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, March 23, 2014 at 2:45 pm | Edit
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Funny—with so much of the mainstream now celebrating Pi Day, I find myself less inclined to do so.  But for the sake of our grandson, with whom a phone conversation is more likely to consist of recitations of pi to 36 digits, or of whether a given number is prime or composite, than it is of  "what did you do today?" I will reprise the Pi Day video I posted in 2011.  Enjoy!

Posted by sursumcorda on Friday, March 14, 2014 at 7:04 am | Edit
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Our Ash Wednesday anthem:  I Am Not Afraid (Martin/Larson, Bekenhorst Publishing, BP1863).  (You must click the link to hear this one.)

 

 

altAnd for Sunday, March 10, 2014, the beautiful Adoramus Te (David Hicken, Hal Leonard, 08748829).  This recording is still not our choir, but getting closer:  it's from one of the times when our children's choir sang (with many others) at Carnegie Hall for the National Children's Choir Festival.  I know one can get tired of anything, but at the moment I feel we could sing this every week!

 

Posted by sursumcorda on Monday, March 10, 2014 at 6:00 am | Edit
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Sunday, March 2, 2014: 

This being the last Sunday before the alleluias disappear for Lent, we pulled out all the stops with anthems and hymns featuring that joyous shout.

When in Our Music God Is Glorified (arr. by Mark Hayes, Beckenhorst Press, BP1750).  There's still no YouTube version, but the link takes you to JWPepper.com, where you can hear it.

This was our introit (alleluia section) and processional hymn (hymn section).  It was a clever idea, and mostly went over well, though the congregation was a little confused about when to stand.  We managed to sing and walk at the same time (always diffcult with an anthem, rather than a plain hymn), and a wonderful trumpet player (Nancy Micklos King) covereth a multitude of sins.

Our anthem was We're Gonna Worship Christ the King (Pepper Choplin, Lorenz, 10/4245L).  This version doesn't really do it justice, but YouTube beggars can't be choosers.  We had a great soloist (Mark King), the anthem was fun to sing, and it all came together very well.  (Yes, Mark is Nancy's husband, this making the third set of Mark-and-Nancy spouses in our immediate circle.)

Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, March 2, 2014 at 4:33 pm | Edit
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Recently we attended another wonderful Horns & Pipes concert at Orlando's Cathedral Church of St. Luke.  We have been enjoying these ever since Heather made the suggestion back in 1996.  One of the works featured was Fisher Tull's The Binding.  I believe Heather and Janet in particular will enjoy hearing it, even though this version I found on YouTube is not quite as glorious as with the larger and more professional Horns & Pipes ensemble.

Posted by sursumcorda on Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 3:40 pm | Edit
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Sunday, February 23, 2014:  How Great Is Our God (Chris Tomlin, arr. Jack Schrader, Hope Publishing Company, C5491). 

While we were singing, one of the little girls in the second row got up and started to dance!

Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, February 23, 2014 at 2:56 pm | Edit
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Our anthem, February 16, 2014:

Come, Christians, Join to Sing arr. Carlton R. Young

(Sorry, still no acceptable YouTube version.)

Posted by sursumcorda on Monday, February 17, 2014 at 8:24 am | Edit
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altOur anthem for Sunday, February 9, 2014.

 The Lord's Prayer (Benjamin Harlan, Harold Flammer A8674)

I'm sorry for the lack of YouTube video, and even sorrier that you don't get to hear our own talented cellist, but you can hear the anthem, complete with cello part, at the JWPepper link above.

Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, February 9, 2014 at 12:13 pm | Edit
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Our anthem for Sunday, February 2, 2014.

God Watches Over You (Joel Raney, Hope Publishing C5581)

Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, February 2, 2014 at 3:30 pm | Edit
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Our anthem for Sunday, January 26, 2014.

Down to the River to Pray (arr. Sheldon Curry, Daybreak/Hal Leonard 08743261)

Posted by sursumcorda on Monday, January 27, 2014 at 10:46 am | Edit
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In one way or another, we covered a lot of bases with our church music last Sunday.  It was a wild ride.  But that's one thing I like about our church.  From Deck Thyself My Soul with Gladness to Shout to the Lord, from What Star is this with Beams so Bright to How Great Thou Art, from There's a Wideness in God's Mercy to a couple I'll highlight:

First, our choir anthem, Praise His Holy Name by Keith Hampton (earthsongs).

We arrived early at church, and having discovered that the processional hymn was a new one to us, I plunked it out on the piano several times before the director arrived.  It may sound easy, but it is decidedly not if you've never heard it before.  Mercifully, he took it down a whole third from what is written in our hymnal.

I would never have guessed that Lift Every Voice and Sing was an African-American song, much less the "Black National Anthem" as it is sometimes called.  Not knowing the tempo at which it is apparently usually sung (judging by the YouTube recordings I listened to), I took it at a faster clip, and would have guessed it to be a World War I era song, or maybe something from the Salvation Army.  If you listen to it and note that the middle part sounds like the more militant parts of Les Miserables, be assured that this was written in 1899/1900 by James Weldon Johnson and his brother John Rosamond Johnson.

The experience reminded my very much of singing with grandson Joseph, who chooses hymns not by name, but by number, providing an interesting tour through the more obscure parts of the hymnal.  Fun!

Posted by sursumcorda on Wednesday, January 22, 2014 at 6:17 am | Edit
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