Friday, January 1, 2010


Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God (Ordinary Form) St. Joseph Church, Cumberland, RI - 10:30 AM - 1/1/10

The historic Church of St. Joseph, established in 1872, present church built in 1888, present organ (W.K. Adams and Son of Providence, RI, two manuals, nine ranks, mechanical) built in 1889 and still in very good shape.

I spent six years here as an assistant organist (1983-89) to the late Bob Dube (1938-2000). This is my first stomping grounds as an actual organist of any kind.

I came here for the 10:30 Mass this morning with my mother. Still quite the nice looking church, and the organ's still very playable. The hymns were a bit different from what one would normally expect for New Year's Day, but on the most part wasn't bad. There was some stuff I definitely could have done without.

Entrance: On this day, the first of days ("Gott sei Dank")
- I have not heard this hymn in eons! Was actually good to hear again.
Psalm: refrain from the missalette (David Kraehenbuehl - anyone remember his old book Service Music for the Mass? Blue book?) / verses were recited by the lector
Alleluia: Janco (Mass of the Angels and Saints?)
Offertory: Make me a channel of your peace (Temple)
Eucharist: Massive Cremation (blech!)
Communion: Sing of Mary, pure and lowly ("Pleading Savior")
Recessional: Let there be peas and carrots on earth (blech!)

Although the Mass was that of Mary, Mother of God, I think the organist tried to combine the votive "World Day of Prayer for Peace" in her hymn selections.

I would have done something like this (in the typical parish that insists on hymns):
In: Hark! the herald angels sing (I combined the Mary and the Peace motifs in this one Christmas carol - "Offspring of the Virgin's womb", and "Peace on earth and mercy mild". BAM!)
Psalm: Alstott setting from Respond and Acclaim (I like the chant motif on this one, and would have sung this a cappella.)
$: an Ave Maria of some sort, or (since this parish uses We Celebrate), Stainless the Maiden (which uses the Polish tune "Serdeczna Matko")
+: What child is this (the Babe, the Son of Mary)
Out: Lo! how a rose e'er blooming (easier for your typical congregation to sing than it looks, though if the congregation is too chicken, or the pastor is too chicken, Sing of Mary, Pure and Lowly is good, too!)

BTW, after 20 years away from St. Joseph's, I can still remember the stoplist on this organ:

Bourdon 16' / Stopped Diapason 8' / Harmonic Flute 4' / Bassoon 8' / Oboe 8'
(The bassoon is the bottom octave, the oboe is the rest of the rank)

Open Diapason 8' / Dulciana 8' / Melodia 8' / Octave 4' / Flautino 2'

PEDAL: Bourdon 16' (borrowed from Swell)

Fr. Hunt made a mention in his sermon of "hero worshipping". Michael Jackson (who's death I did NOT mourn, btw - after all, he got away with a hell of a lot, IMHO) was his example on how false worshipping can lead to bad things. I almost wanted to do the Pentecostal thing and yell out "AMEN, FATHER!"


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