One of the hymns most of us look forward to singing every year is “Only-begotten, Word of God eternal.” The basic text has been in The Hymnal since 1940. The last two verses were composed by the translator of this ninth century office hymn for the feast of the dedication of the church. The translator and composer was Maxwell Julius Blacker (1822-1888), a priest of the Church of England.
Our bulletin production process enables us to use Blacker’s original text with but one change. Our liturgy makes use of a long hymn at the preparation of the gifts very well. Because of this, we get to use two verses that are not included in The Hymnal. These are as follows:
Thus in our solemn feast of dedication, graced with returning rites of due devotion, ever thy children, year by year rejoicing, chant in thy temple
Here for thy children stands the holy laver, fountain of pardon for the guilt of nature, cleansed by whose water springs a race anointed, liegemen of Jesus.
We will use these words, though except for “liegemen” we will use the word “servants” instead. One change made in Blacker’s verses that were used in the 1940 and the 1982 hymnals had to do with the Mass and its frequency. In the verse referring to the Eucharist, Blacker had used the adverb “daily.” The Hymnal editors have used the word “humbly.” That is a substitution we do not need to make at Saint Mary’s. “Daily,” we are united to the Lord Jesus Christ in his sacrifice. Daily, we follow his command to “Do This.” There is certainly nothing wrong with “humbly” adoring and one hopes that our community always walks in humility before the Lord, but here the Lord is adored daily in the most holy Sacrament of the altar. Worship has always been at the heart of everything we do at Saint Mary’s. And at the heart of our worship is the Mass. I hope you will be able to be with us this Sunday as we celebrate the Feast of the Dedication of the Church. Stephen Gerth
PRAYER LIST . . . Your prayers are asked for Sarah, Grover, Annie, Paul, Robert, Eileen, Gloria, Jerri, Myra, Tessie, Margaret, Marion, Olga, Rick and Charles, priest. Pray for the members of our Armed Forces on active duty, especially Patrick, Edward, Christopher, Andrew, Robert, Joseph, Mark, Ned, David and John . . . GRANT THEM PEACE . . October 7: 1962 Stephen Waterman Mason; 1965 Josephine Barreaux; October 9: 1971 Roger Rolt-Wheeler; 1987 Barbara L. Coates; October 10: 1994 Octavia Josephine Wenz Wall.
LITURGICAL NOTES . . . The Sunday Proper: 1 Kings 8:22-30, Psalm 84:1-6, 1 Peter 2:1-5, 9-10, Matthew 21:12-16 . . . Confessions will be heard on Saturday, October 5 and on Saturday, October 12, by Father Gerth.
NOTES ON MUSIC . . . This Sunday at the Solemn Mass, the prelude will be Prelude on ‘Iste Confessor’ by Healey Willan (1880-1968). This piece is based on the Offertory hymn for the Mass, “Only-begotten, Word of God eternal,” a great hymn for the dedication of a Church. The postlude will be Sortie from Dix Pièces by Théodore Dubois (1837-1924). The setting of the Mass ordinary is Missa brevis in D-dur, KV 194 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791). For those who might be wondering, the “ordinary” of the Mass refers to those parts that do not change from week to week: especially Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Benedictus and Agnus Dei. Of course, at Saint Mary’s, the congregation sings the Creed at Solemn Mass. The other parts of the Mass, things that change each week, are called the “proper”: including the minor propers sung by the choir, the Collect of the Day, the lessons, the proper preface and other prayers. The anthem this week, which is neither ordinary nor proper, but simply extra-liturgical (but there is nothing wrong with this, provided it does not disrupt the Mass), is Behold, the tabernacle of God by William Harris (1883-1973). We continue our organ recital series before Solemn Evensong. This week, we welcome Mr. Gregory Eaton of the Church of Saint Ann and the Holy Trinity, Brooklyn Heights, who will play works of Hampton, Hurd and Michel.
AROUND THE PARISH . . . Altar flowers are needed for Sundays, October 13, 20 and 27, and for November 1 (All Saints’ Day). Please call the parish office to sign-up . . . Many thanks to Pat Higgins for preparing the first batch of ashes from last year’s palms. There will be another call for palms in February! . . . The first of four New Members’ and Friends’ gathering will be held on Monday night, October 7 at 7:00 PM at the rectory. Invitations have been mailed, but if you or anyone you know would like to attend, please call the parish office . . . Attendance last Sunday: 310.
DEVOUTLY STUPID . . . There was a very small fire in the church on Wednesday morning at the Shrine of Christ the King. Someone seems to have left Jesus a letter in the rack of burning votive lights at the shrine. The letter caught fire. Fortunately the sexton on duty immediately took a fire extinguisher to the fire. No one was hurt. We think there was minimal damage to the statue itself – carved by Iohann Kirchmeyer in 1920. We are arranging for the restorers who did such excellent work on the Mercy Chapel crucifix to assess the damage. S.G.
OCTOBER WALKING TOUR OF CHURCHES . . . Father Weiler and Mr. Ben Northrup, an architect and friend of the curate, are leading a walking tour of several historical Episcopal and other churches of the Upper West Side on Saturday, October 12. All members and friends of Saint Mary’s are invited to come along. The tour will be a great way to spend a day enjoying the city and some of its most interesting buildings while at the same time learning a little about the Christian faith by studying Christian houses of worship together. We will depart from Saint Mary’s at 10:00 AM and will conclude about 3:00 PM. In the midst of the tour we plan to stop at one of the local restaurants for lunch. Please contact Father Weiler by telephone (212-869-5830) or email email@example.com if you would like to join the tour.
Twenty and Thirty-Something Gathering… 20 tickets have been reserved for the 8:00 PM October 17, 2002 showing of a new play called “Hollywood Arms,” which recently opened at the Cort Theater on 48th Street. All twenty and thirty-something members and friends of Saint Mary’s are welcome to join Father Weiler and other younger parishioners who are going to the show. The tickets are only $15. Several tickets are still available. Please contact Father Weiler by phone at 212-869-5830 ext. 16 or email, firstname.lastname@example.org, for ticket information.
GOSPEL CELEBRATION 2002 . . . Saint Mary’s will be the venue for this year’s Gospel Celebration 2002, a concert by Broadway Inspirational Voices to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids. In 1994, Michael McElroy founded the Broadway Gospel Choir, and then in 1999 he founded the Broadway Inspirational Voices. The choir is comprised of actors performing on and off Broadway. Tickets on Sunday, October 6 are $35.00, General Seating. VIP tickets for Sunday night are $60.00. On Monday, October 7, all tickets are $35.00. Call 212-840-0770 or online.
READING WITH SAINT MARY’S . . . This is a group that reads, thinks, prays, and questions together… but only meets once! During the month of October, we’ll be reading Writing in the Dust: After September 11 by Rowan Williams. Please email any questions, thoughts, or comments to email@example.com. We meet for dinner and discussion on Wednesday evening, October 30, at 7:00 PM in Saint Benedict’s Study.
The Calendar of the Week
Sunday Feast of the Dedication of the Church
Procession & Solemn Mass 11:00 AM
Solemn Evensong & Benediction 5:00 PM
Friday Weekday Abstinence
Saturday Of Our Lady
The Parish Clergy
The Reverend Stephen Gerth, rector,
The Reverend Matthew Weiler, curate, The Reverend James Ross Smith, assistant,
The Reverend Rosemari Sullivan, assisting priest, The Reverend Canon Edgar F. Wells, rector emeritus.