Howdy, fans! I haven't posted much in a very, very LOOONNNGGG time -- for the same reason that Brian doesn't comment as much: I've been extremely busy with the shop, which is now up and running quite nicely. My organ subbing also fills my time. I find that I'm much busier now as a substitute organist than I ever was as a full time music person (but without the staff meeting on monday morning!). Also, I actually get to meet my colleagues from other churches with whom I had formerly only spoken over the phone, or, regarding my friends working at Protestant churches, whom I had never met at all. A few months ago, I played my first Presbyterian service. Somehow in 26 years, I had never played for the Presbyterians, if you can believe it. Good folks. When I'm not subbing, I am one of 9 basses in the choir at Ascension Episcopal. I must say, it's great singing in a choir with such strong men's sections. There are about just as many tenors as there are basses -- and of course a goodly supply of female voices too (don't want to slight the ladies!). On tap currently: the Tallis "If Ye Love Me" (SATB edition), the Vaughan Williams "O Taste and See", the Mueller "Create in Me", the Mozart "Ave Verum", a wealth of good newly composed anthems, and my personal favorite in preparation now: the Lacrymosa from the Mozart Requiem. Around Christmas, we sang a Mozart Gloria for Christmas Eve as well as the Glory to God from Messiah. The congregation at Ascension are good singers too -- and without a cantor singing over them. I remember way back when I taught the Apostles' Creed to high schoolers, having quoted a concept stated by St. Augustine that evil exists so that God can make his own glory shine forth more brilliantly. This past year has proven that again and again. The old saying goes that "when a window is shut, a door is opened". In this case, when a porthole was shut, a gate was opened. I bear witness to the fact that the working of the Holy Spirit is truly amazing. I also owe much to the powerful intercessions of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, who has never failed to support me with her prayers. As an act of thanksgiving for her assistance, I hung her icon in my shop as a perpetual reminder of her goodness and faithfulness.
Although I'm rather out of the loop with some of the Roman church politics, I do hear about the major points from the customary news outlets but either have had no interest to comment on them or simply little time to sit down to compose an essay regarding them. Obviously, given the bumper crop of my commentaries lately, I've commented more on ecclesial goings-on, in conversations with friends and in real life public fora than online, so don't think that certain topics don't go unseen or uncommented. I'ved just not written them out here. I came very close to pointing out the irony of Benedict's "wound to humanity" comment from his statements around Christmas time, but just sighed then giggled to myself. The best comment would be a cartoon with the caption "sine verbis".
I recently found an antique altar card from the Latin Rite at a flea market. Bought it for a nickel! A nickel! Vintage 1950's. It wasn't in a complete set, just the central frame with the lesson prayers and bits of the Roman Canon. Pretty cool item. We moved the print of Oak Alley Plantation from over the toilet tank in the bathroom and hung the altar card in its place. Wonderful conversation piece when guests come over. It gets far more attention and reading there than it has in over 40 years! Pretty neat to have the first thing you read each morning be the Munda cor meum! Evangelization takes place everywhere, folks!
Have a great week!