Sermon

Humility & Respect

Sunday, Jun. 27, 2021, Preacher: Rev. Rob Metcalf

Sunday, June 27
Rev. Rob Metcalf
Eleanor Daley, Director of Music
Music Offering:
Fairlawn Avenue Intermediate Choir (Past and Present)
Scripture: Mark 12:41-44
Reader: Sue Metcalf

This morning’s Prelude, Anthems, and Postludes feature a small sampling of Canadian composers, conductors, choirs and instrumentalists.

Prelude Eine kleine Nachtmusik           Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
Members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra

 

 

Opening Hymn This is My Song, O God of All the Nations           Melody: Jean Sibelius (1865-1957)
VOCES8                                                                                        arr. Blake Morgan

This is my song, O God of all the nations,
A song of peace for lands afar and mine.
This is my home, the country where my heart is,
Here are my hopes, my dreams, my holy shrine.
But other hearts in other lands are beating,
With hopes and dreams as true and high as mine.

My country’s skies are bluer than the ocean,
And sunlight beams on cloverleaf and pine.
But other lands have sunlight too, and clover,
And skies are everywhere as blue as mine.
This is my song, O God of all the nations,
A song of peace for their land and for mine.

So let us raise this melody together,
Beneath the stars that guide us through the night;
If we choose love, each storm we’ll learn to weather,
Until true peace and harmony we find,
This is our song, the hymn we raise together;
A dream of peace, uniting humankind.
(Vv. 1 and 2 by Lloyd Stone, v.3 by Blake Morgan)

 

O Canada           Calixa Lavallée (1842-1891)
Sung by some past and present members of Fairlawn Intermediate Choir

O Canada! Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all of us command.
Car ton bras sait porter l’épée, (With glowing hearts we see thee rise)
Il sait porter la croix! (the True North strong and free!)
Ton histoire est une épopée (from far and wide, O Canada)
Des plus brilliants exploits. (we stand on guard for thee.)
God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
(French: Adolphe B. Routhier, 1880)
English: Robert Stanley Weir, 1908)

 

Anthem Psalm 100           Ruth Watson Henderson (b. 1932)
Guelph Youth Singers
Linda Beaupré – Conductor and Artistic Director
Charmaine Martin – Piano

O be joyful in the Lord, all ye lands,
Serve the Lord with gladness
And come before his presence with a song.
Be ye sure that the Lord he is God,
It is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves.
We are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
O go your way into his gates with thanksgiving,
And into his courts with praise.
Be thankful unto him, and speak good of his name.
For the Lord is gracious, his mercy is everlasting;
And his truth endureth from generation to generation.
(Psalm 100)

 

Hymn Thy Hand, O God, Has Guided
The Choir of Trinity College, Melbourne, Australia

Thy hand, O God, has guided
thy flock from age to age;
the wondrous tale is written
full clear, on every page.
Our forebears owned thy goodness,
and we their deeds record;
and both of this bear witness;
one Church, one faith, one Lord.

Thy heralds brought glad tidings
to greatest as to least;
they bade them rise, and hasten
to share the great King’s feast;
and this was all their teaching,
in every deed and word,
to all alike proclaiming
one Church, one faith, one Lord.

Through many a day of darkness,
through many a scene of strife,
the faithful few fought bravely,
to guard the nation’s life.
Their gospel of redemption,
sin pardoned, all restored,
was all in this enfolded:
one Church, one faith, one Lord.

And we, shall we be faithless?
Shall hearts fail, hands hang down?
Shall we evade the conflict,
and cast away our crown?
Not so: in God’s deep counsels
some better thing is stored;
we still maintain unflinching,
one Church, one faith, one Lord.

Thy mercy will not fail us,
nor leave thy work undone;
with thy right hand to help us,
the victory shall be won;
and then, by earth and heaven,
thy name shall be adored,
and this shall be their anthem:
one Church, one faith, one Lord.
(Edward Hayes Plumptre, 1821-1891)

 

Anthem God Will Take Care of You           Walter Stillman Martin (1862-1935)
Fountainview Academy (British Columbia)

Be not dismayed whate’er betide,
God will take care of you;
Beneath His wings of love abide,
God will take care of you.

God will take care of you,
Through every day, o’er all the way;
He will take care of you,
God will take care of you.

All you may need He will provide,
God will take care of you;
Nothing you ask will be denied,
God will take care of you. R

No matter what may be the test,
God will take care of you;
Lean, weary one, upon His breast,
God will take care of you. R
(Civilla Martin, 1904)

 

Closing Hymn Now Thank We All Our God 
Royal Albert Hall, London, England

 

 

Choral Commissioning            E. Daley
Fairlawn Avenue United Senior Choir Section Leads

The Lord bless you and keep you;
The Lord make his face to shine on you
And be gracious unto you.
The Lord lift up the light of his countenance upon you,
And give you peace. Amen.

 

Postlude #1 Caprice No. 24, from 24 Caprices for Solo Violin, Op. 1           Niccolò Paganini (1782-1840)
James Ehnes – Violin (b. 1976, Brandon, Manitoba)

 

 

Postlude #2 Song for Canada           Paul Halley (b. 1952)
Capella Regalis Men and Boys Choir (Halifax, Nova Scotia)

*Please note: this was recorded in 2017 for Canada’s 150th Anniversary*

Sing! Sing a new song,
Sing loud and strong,
Sing of this land of our hopes and our dreams.
Rich harmonies of races and creeds
Join in the chorus from sea unto sea:
Where the whale’s ancient lullaby
Meets the song of the wind in the whisp’ring pines,
All our voices come together, always singing,
“Land of tomorrow, your time has come.”

Oui – qu’un nouveau chant,
Dise à présent un voeu d’accord
Qui doit remplir nos coeurs.
Peuples divers touchant les deux mers,
Heureux voisins, ne formez qu’un seul choeur
Pour mélanger tous vos accents
Aux refrains des cognées dansant sous les vents.
Que nos voix ensemble chantent et rechantent,
“Oui – bel aujourd’hui, vois mon pays.”

Sing! Sing of new birth,
Sing of the earth, sing of great mountains that reach for the sky.
Proud cities swell, vast plains do tell
Of the promise and hope for the future that lies
In the loon’s timeless melody,
In the cry of an eagle that’s soaring free.
All our voices come together, singing,
“Land of tomorrow, your time has come.”
(English words by Paul Halley,
French words by Anton Raphael Boldaire,
translated by Anne Dobbs)

 

“Song For Canada” by Paul Halley, © 1989 Back Alley Music (ASCAP). All rights administered by Pelagos Incorporated. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

♪ Music notes ♪

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical period in music (roughly 1730-1820). Born in Salzburg, he showed prodigious musical ability from his earliest childhood. Already competent on keyboard and violin, he composed his first piece at the age of five, and performed before much of European royalty. At age 17, Mozart was engaged as a musician at the Salzburg court, but grew restless and travelled in search of a better position. While visiting Vienna in 1781, he was dismissed from his Salzburg position, and chose to stay in Vienna, where he achieved fame but little financial security. During his final years, he composed many of his best-known symphonies, concertos and operas, as well as portions of his Requiem, which was left unfinished at the time of his early death at the age of 35. The actual circumstances of his passing are largely uncertain, and have thus been much mythologized. Despite his early death, his rapid pace of composition resulted in more than 600 works of virtually every genre of his time, and many of these compositions are acknowledged as pinnacles of the symphonic, concertante, chamber, operatic, and choral repertoire. He is considered among the greatest classical composers of all time, and his influence on Western music is profound. Ludwig van Beethoven composed his early works in the shadow of Mozart, and Joseph Haydn wrote: “posterity will not see such a talent again in 100 years.”

Jean Sibelius (1865-1957) was a Finnish composer and violinist of the late Romantic and early-modern periods. He is widely recognized as his country’s greatest composer and, through his music, is often credited with having helped Finland develop a national identity during its struggle for independence from Russia. The core of his oeuvre is his set of seven symphonies, which, like his other major works, are regularly performed and recorded in his home country and across the globe. Other works include pieces inspired by nature, Nordic mythology, and the Finnish national epic, the Kalevala, as well as over one hundred songs for voice and piano, chamber, piano, and choral music, an opera, and incidental music for numerous plays. His serene and melodic “Finlandia Hymn” is from one of his best-known compositions – the tone poem Finlandia.

An internationally acclaimed singer and composer, Blake Morgan is a multi-talented musician, playing several instruments, recording and composing in many different genres, and performing with a mastery of vocal flexibility. A gifted classical tenor, he has sung professionally all over the world as an oratorio soloist and also with several American award-winning ensembles, including Chanticleer, Cantus, and Conspirare. Blake moved to the UK in 2016 to take up his position with the world-renowned British vocal ensemble, VOCES8.

Lloyd Stone (1912-1993) was born in California and attended the University of Southern California as a music major, with the intent of becoming a teacher. Instead, he joined a circus bound for Hawaii and remained there for the rest of his life, writing poems and songs. “This is My Song” is his best known work; stanzas 1 and 2 were written in 1934, when he was 22 years old. The poem is typically sung (as heard in this morning’s opening hymn) to the tune Finlandia, by the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius (1865-1957).

Calixa Lavallée (1842-1891) was a French Canadian composer, pianist, conductor, teacher, and administrator. A pioneer in music in both Canada and the USA, he is best known for composing the music for O Canada. Referred to at the time as “Canada’s national musician”, Lavallée was asked to compose the music for a poem written by Adolphe-Basile Routhier. The song was to be performed in honour of the Congrès national des Canadiens-Français (National Congress of French Canadians), on June 24, 1880, at the same time as the Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day celebrations. Government officials had first thought of holding a competition for a national hymn, but by January of 1980, the committee in charge decided there was not enough time. So the Lieutenant-Governor of Quebec, the Honourable Théodore Robitaille, commissioned Judge Adolphe-Basilie Routhier to write a hymn and Lavallée to compose the music. English Canada probably first heard O Canada when schoolchildren sang it for the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall (later King George V and Queen Mary) when they toured Canada in 1901. It officially became the national anthem of Canada in 1980, after a vote in the Senate and the House of Commons. The same 1980 Act of Parliament also changed some of the English lyrics. A slight alteration to the English lyrics was made again in 2018, but the original French lyrics and melody have remained unchanged since 1880.

Ruth Watson Henderson (b. 1932) has an international reputation as a Canadian composer of choral music, and as an admired pianist and organist. She has done much to promote the artistry of children through her wealth of compositions for treble voices, using the expertise gleaned over 29 years as accompanist of the Toronto Children’s Chorus under the direction of Jean Ashworth Bartle. She has also written a wide spectrum of acclaimed works for adult choirs, beginning while accompanist of the Festival Singers under the direction of the late Dr. Elmer Iseler. Although most widely known for her prolific body of choral works, Ruth also writes for piano, organ, and other instruments. As Director of Music at Kingsway-Lampton United Church from 1996 to 2013, she also composed many pieces for congregational use. Although Ruth is no longer actively performing in public, her music is still performed around the globe, and she has often been described as a “Canadian national treasure”.

Edward Hayes Plumptre (1821-1891) was an English theologian, preacher and scholar. His early education took place at home. After a brief stay at King’s College, London, he entered Oxford as a scholar of University College, Oxford, and was ordained in 1847. Plumptre published several volumes of verse, and a number of his hymns can be found in various hymnals. He wrote the text of “Thy Hand, O God, Has Guided” in 1864.

Walter Stillman Martin (1862-1935) attended Harvard University where he studied for the ministry, and was ordained as a Baptist minister, although he later switched to the denomination of Disciples of Christ. He and his Canadian-American wife Civilla Martin came together through a mutual interest in music, and together they created many hymns and religious songs. With his musical talents and her lyric-writing skills, their lives together as a husband and wife team was a blessing to them, and ultimately, to the world.

Civilla Martin (1866-1948) was a Canadian-American writer of religious hymns and gospel songs in the late 19th and early 20th century. Born in Nova Scotia, she was a school teacher with a modest musical training, and is reputed to have written several hundred hymns and religious songs. “God Will Take Care of You” was her first hymn (1904). Her husband, Walter Stillman Martin wrote the music for this text, and many other hymns. “His Eye is on the Sparrow”, written in 1906, and set to music by Charles H. Gabriel, has also stood the test of time.

Martin Rinckart (1586-1649) was a German Lutheran clergyman and hymnist. He is best known for the text to “Now Thank We All Our God” (Nun Danket Alle Gott), which was written around 1636. It was set to music by Johann Crüger in 1647, and translated into English in the 19th century by Catherine Winkworth.

Catherine Winkworth (1827-1878) was the foremost 19th century British translator of German hymns into English. Her translations were polished, and yet remained close to the original, and are still used extensively in many denominational hymnals. Educated initially by her mother, she lived with relatives in Dresden, Germany in 1845, where she acquired her knowledge and interest in German hymnody. A pioneer in promoting women’s rights, Winkworth put much of her energy into the encouragement of higher education for women.

Niccolò Paganini (1782-1840) was an Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer. He was the most celebrated violin virtuoso of his time, and left his mark as one of the pillars of modern violin technique. His 24 Caprices for Solo Violin, Op. 1, are among the best known of his compositions, and have served as an inspiration for generations of composers.

Paul Halley (b. 1952) is a Grammy Award-winning composer, choral conductor, and organist. He was born in Romford, England, and raised in Ottawa, where he received his early musical training as a chorister and assistant organist with The Men and Boys Choir of St. Matthew’s Anglican Church. At age sixteen, he was made an Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto. Awarded the organ scholarship at Trinity College, Cambridge, Halley received his M.A. with prizes in composition and performance, and was made a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists, winning first prize in the College examinations. Following four years of post-graduate work as a church musician and teacher in Montreal, Jamaica, and Victoria, British Columbia, Halley was appointed Organist and Choirmaster at The Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, where he served for twelve years from 1977-1989. In 2007, Halley relocated to Halifax, Nova Scotia to become Director of Music at both St. George’s Anglican Church (to 2011), and the University of King’s College (current), as well as University Musician at Atlantic School of Theology (to 2015). In 2015 Halley became Director of Music at The Cathedral Church of All Saints, Halifax, a position which he holds in conjunction with his work at King’s, providing many opportunities for collaboration between the two institutions. He and his wife live on the South Shore of Nova Scotia where they enjoy exploring the waters of Mahone Bay in a traditional Cape Cod catboat which rejoices in the name “Magnificat”, as well as a dinghy, “Nunc Dimittis”!

 

 

Music Sources:

Eine kleine Nachtmusik Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart https://youtu.be/9xupAvjTaR4
This is My Song, O God of All the Nations Melody: Jean Sibelius arr. Blake Morgan https://youtu.be/eXooDIWVRZs
Psalm 100 Ruth Watson Henderson https://www.fairlawnchurch.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/Psalm-100-Ruth-WH-Guelph.mp3
Thy Hand, O God, Has Guided https://youtu.be/E9h3reXZ-ik
God Will Take Care of You Walter Stillman Martin https://youtu.be/u4Ez8m2ozf4
Now Thank We All Our God https://youtu.be/s99dNPKYtHk
Caprice No. 24, from 24 Caprices for Solo Violin, Op. 1 Niccolò Paganini https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBEXHdeKjrM
Song for Canada Paul Halley https://youtu.be/Ha6vFbDBDpc

Image Sources:

Loretta Gould https://mikmaq-artist.com/pages/about-loretta-gould
Luke Swinson https://www.instagram.com/lukeswinsonart/?hl=en