My dearest friends,
I can hardly believe – the choir season is coming to an end! We have had an epic year: back in September, we had our first in-person rehearsals since the pandemic began, but with serious safety precautions in place and our numbers in liturgy very restricted. The CDC says that group singing is one of the more dangerous activities during such a pandemic. Yet it is important to acknowledge that none of our choirs experienced outbreaks of Covid-19. Yes, individuals became ill, but our safety precautions, even our numerical restrictions, enabled us to rediscover the joy of choral ministry while keeping each other safe.
For the St. Michael’s Singers, that means that we really have only had a handful of full-choir liturgies. I have been inspired by their ability to sing glorious liturgy with a rotating roster of singers, even to the point where from week to week and service to service it was as if each featured a unique ensemble. Yet, they always sounded like the St. Michael’s Singers, and their commitment to liturgy and the St. Michael’s family never wavered.
For the Saints & Singers and the Choristers, it has been a year of rediscovery. They have been leading outdoor liturgies, baking communion bread, singing joyfully at several different liturgies, and enjoying the support of both our section leaders and the congregation.
It has been a very intense year for our choral musicians. We are looking forward to a brief respite this summer. However, we also can hardly wait till we resume singing in the fall!
This Sunday, we will commission both the St. Michael’s Singers and the Saints & Singers. As we head into our summer liturgies, please take a moment to thank your choral singers for all their hard work, dedication, prayer and love they’ve shown this past season.
And—if anyone wants to join us—no auditions! There is always room in a choir at St. Michael’s, just as there is always room at God’s Table. As it says in William Byrd’s great anthem Sing joyfully, “Sing loud unto the God of Jacob.”