Tag: church

The sorrowful mother

This Thursday, 25 March, is the Feast of the Annunciation, when the Christian Church remembers how the angel Gabriel announced to the Virgin Mary that she would bear a son, as recounted in Luke 1:26-38 and previously foretold in Isaiah 7:14. Unlike the dates of Lent and Easter, which shift according to the lunar calendar, […]

Consorts unchained!

These lyrics, from Come, ye sons of art, away, the birthday ode for Queen Mary of 1694, are an exhortation to use instruments overtly and powerfully — as Henry Purcell himself demonstrates in his setting. That prescient call would have struck home for its modernity, doubtless more than we can appreciate today. Strike the viol! […]

Tuning hearts

An anthem regularly sung in Anglican services at Eastertime is this one in six parts by Thomas Weelkes (1576-1623), composed during the period from 1602 when he was employed as organist at Chichester Cathedral. Its words, by an unknown author, are packed full of less-than-subtle references to good music-making: to finding the ideal register and […]

Weren’t you with him? (Holy Week, Thursday)

For Thursday of Holy Week. This is the fifth post in a series for Holy Week and Easter Day, 2020. Peter’s three-times denial of knowing Jesus, in the hours after Jesus had been arrested and was being interrogated, is one of the most affecting and deeply personal parts of the Passion story, confronting us individually. […]

Weep with songs of sadness

Vox Luminis, performing in Auxi-le-Ch√Ęteau in 2012. In these days and weeks many people are weeping, especially from heartbreak over the loss of loved ones, friends and colleagues as the COVID-19 epidemic increasingly takes many lives in many countries — in many cases lives cut short in their prime and before their time. For each […]