Ordinary Time 2017
This week I am excited and honored to be taking part in the Yale Congregations Project in New Haven, Connecticut 21-26 June along with my colleague Melanie and my friend Brian. We comprise the team from St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond, Virginia. I'm tweeting, too, using the hashtag #YaleCP.
For me, Day 2 of the Congregations got underway as every day should, sitting in a room with a few organists and talking about hymns.
Pasi Tangent: This year represents my first encounters with Pasi instruments. This instrument of his at Yale is the first I've heard, and this summer his Opus 5 will be moved to St. Benedict Parish in Richmond, Virginia, the city where I live and work.
John Ferguson is a hymn expert, and he gave us the gospel truth about many hymns before letting us grill him a little bit. His underlying theme is that the music of hymns -- on top of the texts -- is an exegetical medium, and that as organists we can highlight this. Furthermore, organists must do this in a way that supports amateur singing (which is what hymn singing is), and is sensitive and appropriate to its context both within the life of the congregation and within the specific service.
We also talked a goot bit about "ethnic" or "folk" hymnody, and how they necessitate a different approach from traditional hymnody. Ferguson's working principle is not one of literal "historically informed performance" -- or I suppose you could say "geographically" or "culturally" informed -- but it is congruent with the very nature of these "folksong" repertories that involved in community. He advocates for an adaptable approach that treats the music with integrity and respect, suggesting that this music can be sung very differently from community to community.
In the afternoon, we held two plenary discussions around two of the projects, the first being an Wednesday evening concert series just outside First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple. This project has a lot in common with our situation, the church being right downtown, but we cannot boast the high level of pedestrian traffic that they do. One of the themes that emerged was evangelism through beauty: arts as a gravitational pull toward the church.
The second plenary shared this theme in a sense: a discussion about a spiritual arts collective at Robertson-Wesley United Church in Alberta. This is a fascinating project, and the kind of thinking that the team has already done about getting people together in the church to collaborate on some kind of artistic creation is impressive and inspiring.
A few remarks in response to this project made an impression on me.
Art we care about threatens us. –David Bartlett #YaleCP— David Sinden (@sinden) June 22, 2013
All doctrine begins with image and metaphor -Don Saliers #YaleCP— David Sinden (@sinden) June 22, 2013
The Holy Spirit has never, never, never rejected good rehearsal. –Don Saliers #YaleCP— David Sinden (@sinden) June 22, 2013
Finally, a glimpse of the other organ that has caught my attention at the Institute of Sacred Music, the new mean-tone Taylor and Boody organ in Marquand Chapel:
Morning Prayer was a sung service written by John Tirro, a graduate of Yale Divinity School, and a Project participant from Tyson House in Tennessee. I found the Lord's Prayer in particular very singable and rather compelling. It was an "upbeat" setting of these words without being cheesy -- not easy to do! His setting held together well, and it's one of the pieces of music I will want to bring back with me.
Evening Prayer was our attempt at a service in the style of St. Gregory of Nyssa, San Francisco. In hindsight, this service fell flat for me, not because I wasn't eager to take part in the human tableaus or the liturgical dance, but I think because the service did not culminate in the Eucharist. Nevertheless, I found the shapes and movement of this service resonated with me, and I am now more eager than ever to experience this service in San Francisco.
The page you're reading is part of Sinden.org
©MMXVII Sinden.org: a site for fun and prophet
Looking for Carol Spreadsheets?
Hungry? Try the Liturgical Guide to Altoids Consumption
Thirsty? Try the Tibia Liquida
The Eric Harding Thiman Fan Page: The greatest composer you've never even heard of.
Questions? Problems? email the sexton.
Alex Ross: The Rest is Noise
Book of Common Prayer
The Daily Office
The Lectionary Page
Ship of Fools
The Sub-Dean's Stall
Vested Interest - Trinity Church in the City of Boston
Andrew Kotylo - Concert Organist
Bonnie Whiting, percussion
conjectural navel gazing: jesus in lint form
Friday Night Organ Pump
Halbert Gober Organs, Inc.
in time of daffodils
Joby Bell, organist
Musings of a Synesthete
My Life as Style, Condition, Commodity.
Nathan Medley, Countertenor
Notes on Music & Liturgy
The Parker Quartet
Roof Crashers & Hem Grabbers
That Which We Have Heard & Known
This Side of Lost
Zachary Wadsworth | composer
Advent (Medfield MA)
All Saints, Ashmont (Boston MA)
All Saints (Indianapolis IN)
Atonement (Bronx NY)
Broadway UMC (Indianapolis IN)
Cathedral of All Saints (Albany NY)
Christ Church (Bronxville NY)
Christ Church (Madison IN)
Christ Church (New Haven CT)
Christ Church Cathedral (Indianapolis IN)
Christ's Church (Rye NY)
Church of St. Stephen (Hamden CT)
Congregational (Belmont CA)
Coventry Cathedral (UK)
First UMC (Lancaster SC)
Gloria Dei ELCA (Iowa City IA)
Immanuel Lutheran (St Paul MN)
Immanuel Lutheran (Webster NY)
John Knox PCUSA (Houston TX)
St Andrew (Marblehead MA)
St Andrew's, Oregon Hill (Richmond VA)
St Bartholomew the Great, (London, England)
St James's (Lake Delaware NY)
St James's (Richmond VA)
St James Cathedral (Chicago IL)
St Mary's Cathedral (Memphis TN)
St Matthew and St Timothy (NYC)
St Paul's (Cleveland Heights OH)
St Paul's (Indianapolis IN)
St Paul's Cathedral (Buffalo NY)
St Paul's, K Street (Washington DC)
St Peter's (Lakewood OH)
St Peter's ELCA (NYC)
St Stephen's (Richmond VA
St Thomas (New Haven CT)
St Thomas ELCA (Bloomington IN)
Second PCUSA (Indianapolis IN)
Towson Presbyterian Church (MD)
Tremont Temple Baptist (Boston MA)
Trinity (Indianapolis IN)
Trinity on the Green (New Haven CT)
Yes, but they're not the kind you buy on Wheel of Fortune.
the owner of a bower at Bucklesfordberry?
Full daintily it is dight.
interested in touch lamps?
And fountain pens.