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Keeping the Faith

Posted by Jason, May 13, 2015

We have lots of paintings and sketches of Christ Church all over our campus. I'm not sure any of them really tell the full story. If I were creating one, I'd be sure to include a number of people in our courtyard, including many who are struggling to meet their day to day needs. I heard a preacher recently say that if your church doesn't have beggars, it's not a church, it's a museum.

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And just where do you think you’re going?!

Posted by Jason, April 29, 2015

On Monday evening, I attended a master class taught by Olivier Latry, the principal organist at Notre Dame in Paris. As one of the students was playing, he kept asking her “Where are you going?”

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An Awkward Conversation

Posted by Jason, March 13, 2015

I recently attended a house party as the guest of a friend. I didn’t know anyone at the party other than the friend who took me. At one point, my friend went to find the bathroom, and I was hovering around the edge of the room when a guy approached and introduced himself to me. Within no time, the standard Washington DC introductory question was asked, “What do you do?” Now, a good friend and colleague of mine once told me that he tells people that he’s an electrician when someone asks because it doesn’t usually involve any follow-up questions. That being said, I was honest and said that I was the musician for an Episcopal church.

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For the means of grace, and for the hope of glory

Posted by Jason, March 4, 2015

One of my favorite prayers found in The Book of Common Prayer is one that we pray at Evensong. It is known as The General Thanksgiving. The poetic language moves me at each recitation.

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Striving for Excellence

Posted by Jason, January 21, 2015

I have just returned from Chicago where I attended a conference hosted at St. James' Cathedral. The title of the conference was "Cultivating Excellence in Liturgy, Music, and Preaching: A Conference for Musicians and Clergy." This concept came from an inspiring sermon delivered by The Rt. Rev. Eugene Sutton, Bishop of Maryland, last summer as part of the annual conference of the Association of Anglican Musicians. Bishop Sutton spoke of the need for the Episcopal Church to return to its identity of being known for its excellence at worship. He urged us to create a new three-legged stool for our church based on liturgy, music, and preaching. Strength in all three of these, not just one or two, but in all three, he believes, will stop our membership decline and help us reach more people with the great news of the Gospel of Jesus.

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A Little Advent Music

Posted by Jason, December 10, 2014

One of the many musical highlights for me each Advent is when I get the opportunity to play the three chorale preludes that Johann Sebastian Bach composed based on the tune Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland (the tune that we know to Savior of the nations, come! Hymn #54 in The Hymnal 1982).

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Dear Pierce

Posted by Jason, November 12, 2014

Dear Pierce,

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Sing to the Lord a new song!

Posted by Jason, October 15, 2014

This past Sunday, we sang two hymns by Richard Dirksen who for many years served as Canon Precentor at Washington National Cathedral. Even though the hymns are in The Hymnal 1982 and have been around for nearly 40 years, I suspect most people would still consider them to be “new.” Although, I’m 40 and people long ago stopped referring to me as “new.”

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Death do us part

Posted by Jason, September 17, 2014

Over the past several months, I’ve played for a number of non-Episcopal funerals at off-site locations. I’m always willing to play for these extra services, and my student loan debt appreciates the help. At the most recent one, I seemed to have been the only one involved with the service who had any concern for order and planning. At times, I wanted to just yell out, “Let’s just get out the Book of Common Prayer and go with it!”

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Summer Music

Posted by Jason, August 20, 2014

In her blog, Maddie Waldhoff, parishioner and choir member, gives us an inside look at the music and experiences at the Newport Royal School of Church Music this summer. 

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