Tuesday, January 27, 2009

put your money where your mouth is

I used to think that this was my dream job...until the position actually opened up and I saw the description...

Part-Time Director of Music - St. ---- Cathedral, L-----

This part-time director of music serves approximately 10-20 hours per week, though there will be times in the liturgical year in which that varies. He/she promotes and models sound liturgical principles so that our liturgical assemblies may offer prayerful praise to God.

This person must be a practicing Roman Catholic and posses a knowledge of and appreciation for renewed Catholic Liturgy; have a degree or equivalence in music/organ performance, and have minimum of 5 years parish experience in keyboard accompaniment and choral direction. Strong organizational, teaching and computer skills are valued.

For more information, contact --------

I am rather surprised at both the size of the position, as well as the relatively low skill level required.

I thought I had read somewhere (although now I cannot find it anywhere!) that the music at the cathedral was supposed to be of the highest quality; as a model for all of the other churches in the diocese.

Although I suppose that the cathedral D of M really doesn't have that much more to do than I do at my little church, in terms of regular weekend events, with the exception of a couple of prominent, annual events.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

a few good songs

I was asked recently what my "favorite song to play on the organ" was. I've never been asked that before, and so I had to think about it! I don't really have a favorite "organ piece," so I will clarify that to mean "hymn." Like, what hymns do I go, "oh goody! I love this one!" before playing? Or which have I belted out either in the empty church or with a cd in my car?

In NO particular order, here's my list of top 11, with some clarifications. (Christmas Carols are at the bottom. They are kind of in a class of their own.)

Let All Mortal Flesh
O Sacred Head Surrounded
Glory Be to Jesus (Italian--Viva Viva Jesu)
Ah, Holy Jesus
God, We Praise You (or any other good text to the tune Nettleton)
Hail, Holy Queen Enthroned Above
How Great Thou Art (not as the schmaltzy hymn, but either a capella or rocked up.)
Once in Royal David's City
The First Noel
Away in a Manger (the less common version)
O Come, All Ye Faithful

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Ad Orientem at St. P

Mass is now being offered Ad Orientem on Sundays at 10:30 am (and all weekdays) at St. P.

pictures from the Baptism of Our Lord:

Saturday, January 10, 2009

A Fashion Show--Please vote!

Or: "Everything you ever wanted to know about Mara and head coverings."

Those of you who read this blog simply because you know me, rather than having liturgical things in mind will find this whole entry strange. I apologize in advance. Try to see the amusing end of this, the fact that I am modeling assorted forms of head coverings.
I realize the irony. I know I should not be spending so much time worrying about what, if anything, to put on my head while at Mass.

However, the whole point of this entry is that while I do believe that I ought to, as a woman, have my head covered in church, (see numerous articles online if you want to know more about THAT,) I am not quite sure how to go about doing this!

My biggest concern has to do with NOT wanting to stick out. I don't want everyone to see me in a mantilla and think, "oh, there's one of those weird traditionalist girls..."
that isolates me.

As you will see from the following pictures, it's easy to wear a scarf in the winter and fit in, but we'll see what happens in the summer...

Here's a simple scarf. (I wore a similar scarf a couple days ago; for the first time since probably my first communion I had my head covered during a novus ordo mass! I didn't feel like I got any strange looks. it is winter out!)

bandana. (It fits the directive of "having your head covered," by following the letter of the law, but perhaps not the spirit) [great fun can be poked at those lace "doilies" that some women wear to "cover their head."] the best part of this one is that no one would EVER guess that I'm trying to actually "cover my head."

a very warm and cozy scarf

I look like the Blessed Virgin Mary! (who, we ought to NOTICE, is NEVER depicted without having her head covered!)

I am afraid that if I start to do this more seriously/consistently, it will become a fashion show for me..."what head covering shall I wear today that will match my outfit?"
tee hee.

and of course, standard lace mantilla. What better way to make everyone know exactly what you are doing?

Old Russian Grandma. (I actually like this look. I just wish it didn't have the stereotype attached to it...it's almost like...wearing Hitler's mustache!)

and... my favorite!
gypsy/ganster girl!
who could say my head isn't covered!
(I might get some weird looks. But probably not for the reasons that I am initially worried about...)

ok folks, the polls are opened. voice your vote.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

enough said.

Bishop Earl Boyea will celebrate his first Extraordinary Form Mass as Bishop of the Diocese of Lansing, Michigan on Sunday,February 15 at 4:00 PM at All Saints Church in Flint. All Saints islocated one block east of I-75, at the Pierson Road exit, north of downtown Flint. The Mass will be a Pontifical Low Mass, as he was accustomed to celebrating at St. Josaphat Church in Detroit. Music will be supplied by the Assumption Church-Windsor choir (Windsor, Ontario).
Source – http://www.detroitlatinmass.org/jospht/010409.pdf

Wednesday, January 07, 2009


Why don't they write more two or three-part octavos/anthems? (stuff for my choir to sing without the congregation.)

I mean, it seems to me that the majority of church choirs are stumbling along with "sopranos, altos, and a few good men." (I actually have a book called that.)

I wonder if for every one church that has a strong 4-part choir, there are 3 churches that don't. But maybe not. Thinking of my city, there are 4 churches that probably have choirs like that, and mine is the one limping along in three parts.
But in other cities, (like I'm thinking of metro Detroit,) there seems to be a lot more smaller churches.

Those big ol' publishing companies could make a lot of money off this market!

It's especially frustrating to me to think of all the repertoire, mostly classical, that my choir would probably never be able to sing. And so I spend hours looking for easier pieces, requiring less singers, but that are still high-quality!

(I hope I haven't blogged about this before. Sorry, if so.)