This week at Saint Mary’s
My office is in one of the galleries that overlooks the parish hall. This morning there is the sound of construction in the third floor office above me and the sound of carpentry coming from the organ gallery next to my office. The balustrade in the organ loft required rebuilding. During his first summer at Saint Mary’s, Robert McCormick leaned over the rail and it leaned with him. The internal wooden supports have been well used since 1895. It is simply time to replace and reinforce the old wood. In addition, this is the logical time to update the electrical work and to rework some of the lighting.
The office reconstruction is occasioned by staff additions. You will remember that this coming Sunday, August 10, will begin Father Matthew Weiler’s last week with us. He will celebrate and preach at the 10:00 AM and 11:00 AM Masses this Sunday. His last service with us will be on Friday evening, August 15. It seems to me as if it were just yesterday that he was in my office telling me he felt called to return to Yale to prepare to apply to graduate schools. I’m know he and his wife Janna Weiler enjoyed New Haven, and I’m sure it will be very special for them to be back there again. We wish them the very best.
But the office reconstruction is not occasioned by Father Weiler leaving. We now need office space for two full-time priests and office space for a person to help us with development and stewardship. A very straightforward reorganizing of the large space on the third floor along the Forty-sixth Street side of the parish house will give us three offices and one conference room. It will be simple but nice.
Last night there was a wonderful Mass for the Feast of the Transfiguration. We were blessed with the gift of music by the Cathedral Singers of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford. They are a group of volunteers. The music was very, very fine and a large congregation enjoyed this Mass. It sometimes seems like a lot to me to have two major weekday feasts in August when so many are away and when the church building is so hot. But the Mass last night was simple and simply glorious. The liturgy on August 15 will be very rich and very glorious.
At many points in my adult life I am amazed when I remember how well ordered my childhood was, which is to say, when I realize how hard my parents worked to provide for themselves and their children a home. Frequently I am amazed at how much love there is for the Lord and for our common Christian life at Saint Mary’s. There are so many, many components. So much heart is given over and over to make it all happen. It was so clear to me last night that our life is so very full of the signs of God’s blessings. I am so very thankful to be a part of a Christian community where it is so easy to know the Lord. Stephen Gerth
PRAYER LIST . . . Your prayers are asked for Louise who is hospitalized, Alice, Gates, Billie, Jonah, Susan, Joan, Michael, Lois, Virginia, Bart, Brett, Nicole, Jack, Thomas, Annie, Patricia, Paul, Robert, Gloria, Jerri, Margaret, Marion, Olga, Rick, and Charles, priest, Gregory, priest; and for the members of our Armed Forces on active duty, especially Timothy, Patrick, Edward, Kevin, Christopher, Andrew, Joseph, Marc, Ned, Timothy, David, John and Colin. Your prayers are also asked for the repose of the soul of Kiyoshy and Teresita . . . GRANT THEM PEACE . . . August 12: 1987 Toyoko Anne Tsutsumi Morton; August 15: 1963 Rose Macchia; 1971: Elvira Horg Oyx.
IN THIS TRANSITORY LIFE . . . Kiyoshy Sakamaki, father of Maxie Sakamaki, died last week in Japan, after a brief illness. Maxie was able to be in Japan with his family when his father died. Please pray for Kiyoshy, Maxie and all who mourn.
LITURGICAL NOTES . . . The Sunday Proper: Deuteronomy 8:1-10, Psalm 34:1-8, Ephesians 4:25-5:2, John 6:37-51 . . . Confessions will be heard on Saturday, August 9, and on Saturday, August 16, by Father Gerth.
NOTES ON MUSIC . . . This week at the Solemn Mass, the prelude is Antiphon II (“His left hand is under my head, and his right hand doth embrace me.”), Op. 18 by Marcel Dupré (1886-1971). The postlude is Fuge in h-moll, BWV 544 by J. S. Bach (1685-1750). Our soloist is Mr. Geoffrey Williams, baritone and countertenor. The anthem at Communion is Beatus qui non abiit, a Medieval conductus. Once again, we thank parishioner Bob Picken for his help in translating the Medieval Latin. On the Assumption, the organ recital by Robert McCormick at 5:30 includes works of Dupré, Near and Bach. The Mass ordinary is Cantus Missae (Messe in Es-dur), Op. 109 by Josef Gabriel Rheinberger (1839-1901), a grand setting for double choir in the German romantic style, which also shows the influence of earlier polyphony. Motets at Communion are by Bruckner and Grieg. The postlude is Präludium und Fuge in G-dur, BWV 541 by Bach.
AROUND THE PARISH . . . An article in The Episcopal New Yorker mentioned our parishioner, Kyoko Kageyama and our friends Shoji and Ikuko Mizumoto for their work with the Metropolitan Japanese Ministry. We’re especially proud that they call Saint Mary’s home . . . Thanks to Penny Byham for coordinating the 10:00 AM coffee hour schedule. Every Sunday is now covered, thanks to Tony, Debbie, Shoji, Penny and Virginia! . . . Help is still needed in the nursery during the Solemn Mass . . . Altar flowers are needed for Sundays, August 17, August 31 and September 14 . . . Attendance last Sunday 200, attendance on Transfiguration 167.
BRASS CLEANING THIS SATURDAY . . . Sinus problems? Try Brasso. Skin problems? Try Brasso. Spiritual problems? Try Brasso. Please join volunteers from Saint Vincent’s Guild this Saturday, August 9, from 10:00 AM until 2:00 PM to polish and clean for the Assumption.
MEMBERSHIP NOTES . . . This week the parish office received the baptismal records for Rebecca Weiner, formalizing her relationship with us and making her our newest church member. She has lived in New York for twenty years, having passed through Cleveland, Seattle, Boston, California and Maine. A tenured professor of English at Manhattan Community College, she has published poetry in numerous journals. Rebecca also performs and records acoustic/electric violin. She has just returned from a trip to London, where she met Father Allen Shin and brings his greetings to Saint Mary's. When you see Rebecca, please welcome her warmly.
SUMMARY OF JULY 21, 2003, BOARD MEETING . . . At its July 2003 meeting, the Board of Trustees: 1. Heard a report on the performance of Saint Mary’s investment accounts, from Mr. O’Dwyer and the Investment Committee, 2. Discussed options for use of the buildings in Saint Mary’s complex, 3. Learned that the Rector has begun interviewing candidates for the position of administrative assistant, 4. Heard plans for clergy coverage for the period after Father Weiler departs in August, 5. Learned that the renovation work in the Parish House will cost approximately $27,000.00, 6. Learned that the full choir will participate in Evensong and Benediction on Sunday October 5, 2003, which is also the Feast of the Dedication of the Church. The preacher for this service will be the Reverend Peter Galloway, of London, UK, and there will be a Benefit for Saint Cecilia’s Guild in the Rectory, following the service, 8. Heard that work is underway for repair of the balustrade of the choir gallery in the Church, 9. Heard that the campaign to raise funds for new vestments has realized over $14,000, 11. Recommended Dr. R. William Franklin as a Postulant for Holy Orders in the Diocese of New York. Leroy Sharer, secretary
The Calendar of the Week
Sunday The Ninth Sunday after Pentecost
Monday Clare, religious
Wednesday Jeremy Taylor, bishop
Thursday Jonathan Daniels, seminarian
Eve of the Assumption 6:00 PM
Friday The Assumption No Abstinence
Saturday Of Our Lady
The Parish Clergy
The Reverend Stephen Gerth, rector,
The Reverend Matthew Weiler, The Reverend John Beddingfield, curates,
The Reverend James Ross Smith, assistant, The Reverend Rosemari Sullivan, assisting priest,
The Reverend Canon Edgar F. Wells, rector emeritus.