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Caroling Thanks

Posted by Jason, January 1, 2014

At the conclusion of the 10:30 service on Christmas Eve, I noticed a gentleman hanging around upstairs by the console as I finished the postlude. I sat down to switch from my organ shoes to my regular shoes while I noticed him apprehensively approach me a few times, and then walk away. 

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Hark! A Thrilling Voice is Sounding

Posted by Jason, December 4, 2013

It would not bother me at all if Advent lasted significantly longer that it presently does. A friend and colleague asked me last week if I was ever able to really do the music I want during Advent. I told him that I didn’t because of the time crunch in preparing for Christmas, the reality that many choir members are gone during the month of December, preparing for Lessons and Carols, etc. He stated that he felt exactly the same way.

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On Being

Posted by Jason, November 6, 2013

Anyone who knows me well, knows that I am NOT good at waking up early in the morning. I could naturally sleep every day until 11 a.m. I suspect. Obviously, that is NOT an option on Sunday mornings. We have a meeting each Sunday at 7:30 a.m. to discuss the liturgies for the day and to make sure all of the clergy are prepared for their specific duties. So, as painful as it is, I actually enjoy being up early on Sunday and driving to church because I really love listening to Krista Tippett’s show, On Being, on NPR. The guests seem to cross the entire spectrum of belief. This past Sunday, she had on an atheist who eventually got around to talking about all of the good things that can come from religion.

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St. Francis still speaks today

Posted by Jason, October 9, 2013

Growing up Baptist, I didn't really have much understanding of the various saints. I had heard of St. Peter standing watch at Heaven’s entry gate, but the rest were somewhat unfamiliar to me. However, my God-mother lived next door and she, an Episcopalian, was pretty familiar with the saints, but none more so than St. Francis. She had statues of him in her front yard, a big St. Francis bird bath in her back yard, needlepoint pillows with his image on them on her couch, and a couple of his sayings hanging up on her walls – “You may be the only Gospel your neighbor ever reads” is one that stands out still to this day in my mind.

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Teacher's Pet

Posted by Jason, September 11, 2013

One of the most foolish decisions I have ever made was when I agreed to accept a job teaching at a private nonsectarian school. I was interested in earning some extra money, and the newly appointed headmaster at the school made a convincing case to me that I’d be a perfect fit for the part-time job they had to offer in music. I accepted the job, and before long was busy teaching high school music history and music theory, and conducting the 5th grade chorus, 6th grade chorus, junior high and high school choirs.

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Saints, Angels, Singers

Posted by Jason, August 14, 2013

I had the great joy of attending the Royal School of Church Music (RSCM) course in Newport, Rhode Island last week. Each summer, there are RSCM camps at various places throughout the country. The weeklong camps are geared towards boys and girls, but adults come along as well and fill in the gaps needed for the alto, tenor, and bass parts. I was thrilled to take five of our own choristers to this camp.

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My AAMish Family

Posted by Jason, July 17, 2013

I returned last week from the annual conference of the Association of Anglican Musicians (AAM) held in Denver. I belong to a number of professional organizations, but AAM is the one that is most near and dear to me; its annual conferences are often a highlight of my summer.

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Here She Comes!

Posted by Jason, June 19, 2013

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Till Death Do Us Part

Posted by Jason, May 22, 2013

I recently was having dinner with a group of friends and the conversation turned to what we had all done at work that day. I mentioned that I played a funeral in the morning before getting on with other normal routines of work. Suddenly I was being peppered with questions – “Do you find it difficult to play for a funeral?” “Isn’t that depressing?” “Do you see the body?” “What are funerals like at your church?”

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Giving Thanks

Posted by Jason, March 26, 2013

I encourage you to thank members of the choirs when you see them, whether on Sunday mornings at church or an accidental encounter at the grocery store. And, I ask that you do this to both children and adults.

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