The Angelus

Volume 8, Number 38

From the Rector: Saint Mary’s Legacy Society

As we go to press, the parish community will be receiving our Assumption mailing.  For as long as anyone around the office can remember there has been a special appeal to ask for donations to support the mission of Saint Mary’s at Assumption.  Included in this year’s appeal is an invitation to make a bequest to Saint Mary’s and to let your bequest be known.

I think it is fair to say that Father Grieg Taber, rector from 1939 to 1964, was the most assiduous of all of Saint Mary’s rectors in asking people to remember the parish in their wills.  He always used the January issue of the parish magazine to admonish people to make wills and when possible to include bequests for the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin.  He was quite successful at it too.  The parish continues to receive bequests that date from his rectorate.  Saint Mary’s may not have survived the very difficult years in our neighborhood in the 1970s and 1980s without them.

Few of us can give substantial sums of money to charitable purposes while we are alive.  Many of us do have the opportunity to leave bequests when we die.  This is often done by making a church or charity a beneficiary in a will.  In my case, I’ve made Saint Mary’s the beneficiary of a retirement savings account.  Folks with lots of money have access to professionals who can advise them about the many ways the tax codes make generous provisions for those who want to be generous.  Saint Mary’s Legacy Society is not about the money.  It’s about helping the next generation encounter Christ in a place quite unlike any other.

Not so very long ago a senior member of the clergy whose association with Saint Mary’s goes back to the 1950s was at a weekday Mass.  He remarked to me afterwards that nothing had really changed at Saint Mary’s since he first knew the parish as a teenager when Father Taber was rector.  I would go further.  Nothing has really changed since the first members of this community and their priest seized on a vision of a parish community whose life was centered on worship being the very best it can be.  Worship at Saint Mary’s has always been for God’s glory and worship has always been congregational.  “Congregational act” is the phrase used at Saint Mary’s since its inception to describe the kind of worship we are committed to.  Day by day, week by week, this commitment to worship still orders everything about Saint Mary’s.  That’s why I can say nothing has really changed since the beginning.

Parishes, like families and other human institutions, tend to reflect their original formatting, to use computer language.  I think you and I can leave money to the future at Saint Mary’s with the confidence that it’s always going to be about the glory of God and about worship as the center of everything the parish is and does.  It’s the starting point and the ending.  Worship empowers life and service as nothing else does.

Everyone who notifies us that they have made a bequest to Saint Mary’s will be enrolled in Saint Mary’s Legacy Society.  We plan for an annual service of Solemn Evensong on the eve of our Patronal Feast to recognize our members and those who have been benefactors in our past.  Our Bishop is especially supportive of these efforts.  The Right Reverend Mark S. Sisk will be here to preach at our inaugural Evensong on Thursday, December 7, at 6:00 PM.

It has been our practice since I became rector to print in the annual report to the congregation a list of all bequests we have received – and every year there are many.  At present the list goes back to 1991 and the estate of Estate of H. Lee Hennig. I’ve asked a member to begin to go back in the parish records so that all bequests we have ever received may be acknowledged each year in the annual report.

We welcome all bequests including those who wish to remain anonymous.  But I will ask everyone to consider that one of the gifts a bequest can make today is the witness to others of faith in the future of this parish.  Personal witness – something as simple as the listing of one’s name – can be an important encouragement to others to step forward and act.

I hope many will be able to be with us for one of the Assumption Masses – especially for the Solemn Mass on Tuesday evening.  The music will be splendid.  There is a special spiritual energy in the summer here at Saint Mary’s on August 15.  Many friends of the parish in the metropolitan area make a special effort to be here too and their excitement about the parish carries over to the reception in a huge way.

I hope also that every reader of this newsletter will become a member of Saint Mary’s Legacy Society.  If you would like to talk to someone about it, please feel free to contact me directly or to speak with the parish treasurer, Jim Dennis.  Making a bequest is really simple and it is a gift that will do more good than you and I will ever know.  Stephen Gerth


PRAYER LIST . . . Your prayers are asked especially for Robert and Gloria who are hospitalized, for John, Mansell, Terry, Sandra, Daniel, Gloria, Roxanne, Grace, Tony, Michelle, Ray, Isa, Joy, Christine, Danny, Ann, William, John, Laura, Gabriela, Eve, Roy, Deborah, Virginia, Mary, William, Ana, Gilbert, Jeanne, Joseph, Rick, Thomas, priest and Charles, priest; for the members of our Armed Forces on active duty, especially Fahad, Joseph, Patrick, Bruce, Brenden, Jonathan, Christopher, Timothy, Nestor, Freddie, Dennis and Derrick; and for the repose of the soul of Marion . . . GRANT THEM PEACE . . . August 12: 1987 Toyoko Anne Tsutsumi Morton; August 15: 1963 Rose Macchia, 1971 Elvira Horg Oyx.


IN THIS TRANSITORY LIFE . . . The Burial of the Dead will be celebrated for Marion Elizabeth Freise on Saturday, August 12, at 10:00 AM in the Lady Chapel.  Her ashes will be reposed in the vault.  Please pray for Marion and for all who mourn.  S.G.

AROUND THE PARISH . . . Remember: child care is offered from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM each Sunday and during Solemn Masses celebrated during the week . . . Visit the Adult Education section of the parish website for more information about opportunities to learn and grow this fall . . . The Spirituality and Reading group meets on August 20 and continues with Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Letters and Papers from Prison . . . Flowers are needed for Sundays in August.  Please contact the parish office if you wish to give them . . . . . . Confessions now will be heard on Saturday, August 12, by Father Beddingfield and on Saturday, August 19, by Father Mead . . . Attendance Last Sunday 194.


NOTES ON MUSIC . . . This Sunday at the Solemn Mass, the prelude is Prelude on ‘Song 13’ by Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) and the postlude is Paean by Peter Hurford (b. 1930).  The cantor is Mr. Scott Dispensa, baritone.  The anthem at Communion is I got me flowers from Vaughan Williams’s Five Mystical Songs . . . On August 15, the recital at 5:30 is played by the music director, with assistance by members of the Saint Mary’s choir . . . The full choir returns for the Solemn Mass.  The setting of the Mass ordinary is Missa ‘Sancta et immaculata’ by Francisco Guerrero (1528-1599), one of the greatest Spanish composers of the 16th century.  Unlike the more famous Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548-1611), the vast majority of Guerrero’s career was spent in Spain, much of it as maestro de capilla of Seville Cathedral (Victoria spent many years in Rome).  This setting is the first of Guerrero’s Liber Primus Missarum, published in 1566.  A “parody mass,” it is based upon a motet of the same name by Cristóbal de Morales (c. 1500-1553), perhaps the most important Spanish composer of his generation and the first major composer from Spain.  Born in Seville, his career included posts in Rome (for ten years he was a singer in the papal choir) and, after returning to Spain, as maestro de capilla of the cathedrals at Toledo and Málaga.  Morales was among Guerrero’s principal teachers.  Robert McCormick


METROPOLITAN OPERA IN CENTRAL PARK . . . Join Saint Mary’s on the Road on Wednesday, August 23 at 8:00 PM in Central Park for Rigoletto.  We will meet around 5:00 PM near the closest softball field to the stage – the west side of the Great Lawn (an easy way to find the group is to enter from Central Park West at 81st Street).  To ensure that everyone is able to find the group, we have set up an e-mail/phone system.  Simply e-mail us at and we will send you some of the cell phone numbers of people who are going to be there early.  Bring your cell phone (with those numbers) and we’ll “talk you in” when you get to the park.  Please bring some food and drink to share, and something to sit on.  We’ll supply the plates, napkins and cups. Matthew Mead


MISSION THROUGH MUSIC IN SOUTH INDIA . . . On Sunday, September 17 at 1:00 PM in Saint Joseph’s Hall, come and meet Dr. Randall Giles, director, Madras Diocese Department of Liturgy and Music, Church of South India.  Randall is an appointed missionary of the Episcopal Church.  Since 2000, he has been working with the Church of South India’s Madras Diocese.  He has offered workshops and courses for musicians in the diocese, an annual Summer School of Music specifically designed for village church musicians, and workshops for parishes wanting to work through issues of liturgy and music’s place in it.  Admission is free but we would be grateful for a $10.00 donation per person to help Dr. Giles’s mission in South India.


The Calendar of the Week

Sunday                The Tenth Sunday after Pentecost

Monday                     Jonathan Myrick Daniels, Seminarian, 1965

                                    Eve of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Tuesday              The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Wednesday               Weekday

Thursday                  Weekday

Friday                        Weekday                                                          Friday Abstinence

Saturday                   Of Our Lady



Sunday: 8:30 AM Sung Matins, 9:00 AM Mass, 10:00 AM Sung Mass, 11:00 AM Solemn Mass,

5:00 PM Evening Prayer, 5:20 PM Said Mass.  Childcare from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM.

Monday – Friday: 8:30 AM Morning Prayer, 12:00 PM Noonday Office, 12:10 PM Mass,

6:00 PM Evening Prayer, 6:20 PM Mass.  The 12:10 Mass on Wednesday is sung. 

Saturday: 11:30 AM Confessions, 12:00 PM Noonday Office, 12:10 PM Mass, 4:00 PM Confessions, 5:00 PM Evening Prayer, 5:20 PM Sunday Vigil Mass