November is a month where remembering comes to the fore. Not that we don’t remember at other times of the year but it seems that many of the services and events at this time share this theme of remembering.
On Sunday 5th November, itself a date that conjures up this theme of remembering, we come together at 6.30 pm for a service in which to remember all our loved ones who have died. It may be that this was recently and your grief and pain are still very raw, or it may have been some years ago and your grief has mellowed a little as you continue to remember old friends and family members fondly. It may be that the funeral was a long way away or it may have been here at St Mary’s or at a local crematorium. Whatever your circumstances, you are warmly invited to join us for this beautiful service lasting about an hour and there will be a chance over tea or coffee to catch up with others and find support afterwards if that is helpful.
Cards are now available at the South Door to complete if you would like us to remember someone by name at this service.
Whether you are a regular at St Mary’s or don’t come often, I can assure you of a very warm welcome as we share this time of remembering together.
Music for All Souls: A Blog
The next choral evening service will be on Sunday 5 November 2017, and this is a Choral Eucharist for All Souls with commemoration of the departed. We will once again be singing some Requiem music by Kathy Goodchild.
The Introit sets words from Psalms 139 and 119:
If I take the wings of the morning
and fly to the uttermost parts of the sea,
Even there Thy right hand shall guide me,
And Thy right hand uphold me.
If I say, ‘surely the darkness shall cover me’
Even the night shall be light around me.
The darkness is no darkness with Thee,
But the light shineth as the day.
The darkness and the light to Thee are both alike.
But Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.
The Gradual sets words from Psalm 91 followed by the traditional Latin Requiem Eternam:
Whoso dwelleth under the defence of the most high
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
Requiem eternam Dona eis requiem.
Et lux perpetua, luceat eis.
[Grant them eternal rest, and light perpetual shine upon them.]
After the reading of the names of the departed, the choir will sing words from the Book of Revelation:
I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me,
‘Write: from henceforth blessed are the dead which die in the Lord.
Even so saith the spirit. For they rest from their labours
The music for All Souls finishes with a piece for choir and congregation which will be sung at the end of the service, setting a metrical version of Psalm 23:
The Lord’s my shepherd I’ll not want, He makes me down to lie
In pastures green He leadeth me the quiet waters by.
My soul he doth restore again and me to walk doth make
Within the paths of blessedness e’en for his own name’s sake.
Yea though I walk through shadowed vale yet will I fear no ill,
For thou art with me and Thy rod and staff me comfort still.
My table thou hast furnished in presence of my foes
My head with oil Thou dost anoint, and my cup overflows.
Goodness and mercy all my days shall surely follow me,
And in my Father’s house always my dwelling place shall be.
(‘And in My house for evermore Thy dwelling place shall be’) Amen.
“I wrote the tune for The Lord’s my Shepherd sometime after watching a video of Gaelic psalm singing from the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides which Jonathan had sent round to the choir. I would highly recommend this amazing video, click here for the link.”
To finish, Jonathan will be playing Bach’s Fugue in Eb BWV 552, the last movement of the monumental Clavierübung Part III and often played at memorial services.
The service is always very moving; we very much hope you will come and remember your loved ones departed this life.