Manifold thanks to Fr David Hastings and assisting Clergy, to Servers, Choir, Conductors, Organist, Readers, Cantors, Flower Arrangers, Cleaners, Welcomers and Refreshment providers, for another memorable Holy Week; and to all who visited St Michael’s physically or digitally, once or several times. Please come again.
These are my highlights.
Thanks to Erika, Rachel and Matthew for the beautiful Pergolesi “Stabat Mater”.
I’m sure several churches keep a watch with our Lord through the night of Maundy Thursday into Good Friday. Did any also sing plainsong Tenebrae at 4am? With Richard, David and Lucy, it was an inspiring Office.
On Good Friday morning I left St Michael’s to Venerate the Cross without me, and instead took my daughter to the Exeter Passion Perambulation. Arriving too late for the okay Kendrick “Meekness & Majesty” and the dubious theology of a “Jesus bore God’s Wrath” worship song, we left the Cathedral with a crowd of 800+ to see the drama unfold in the city. “When I survey” and “Amazing grace” seemed even fuller of meaning in contrast.
Good Friday evening Tenebrae sung from the West Gallery is one of St Michael’s “signature” services, and the congregation of over 50 were not disappointed with Plainsong Psalms and Responds, the Hebrew alphabet illuminated by Lassus, the remarkable set of Readings, by Richard Parker in Latin and Fr Andy Atkins in English, from Lamentations, Wisdom and the Letter to the Hebrews, and the final Miserere Mei (Ps 51) by Palestrina.
Holy Saturday’s Easter Vigil of Readings, New Fire, Paschal Candles, Exsultet, Renewal of Baptismal Vows and First Mass of Easter was moving as ever, but even more so as the new Pipe Organ (still work in progress, but needing to be run in) was unleashed liturgically for the first time at the Gloria Fanfare while the High Altar candles were lit.
Easter Morning’s Voluntary was the glorious Bach Fantasia in G – the new organ was used again and is sounding very promising and very loud.
Happy Easter! RB.
Out attention now turns to the Eggs being incubated by our Peregrine Falcons and due to hatch later this week or next weekend. See them live online at https://www.stmichaelsmountdinham.org.uk/#