Happy Fall, St. Paul’s~
I hope you had a beautiful summer! As the days draw shorter and cooler, and we inch closer to holidays, which rely on the human spirit to provide the warmth which the climate of the new season often cannot, I find myself feeling particularly thankful for this parish and the experiences we share.
Gratitude seems inherent in our new seasonal setting of service music, Mass of Creation. There is a natural sense of wonder and awe to be found in the Gloria and the Sanctus especially, and I look forward to hearing the majestic acclaims being sung throughout our sanctuary. Meanwhile, the Agnus Dei is more meditative in its tempo and melodic line—it holds a special place in my heart for its innate ability to remind us of the eternal mystery found in our Lamb of God, who “takes away the sins of the world…”
But there is so much more in this community for which to practice gratitude. I recently attended a California Choral Directors Association conference (yes, this is the place for choral nerds in our state to unite), where master teacher Tesfa Wondemagegnehu began his first session by teaching us a song with these lyrics:
You’ve gotta put one foot in front of the other, and lead in love.
Simple, right? Obvious, even? As Tesfa taught us and reminded us over the following days though, living out this command is sometimes extremely demanding, even seemingly impossible. It is uplifting and hope-giving to see smiles from the time I enter our campus to the time I leave and to know the persevering involvement of St. Paul’s in the greater community, both at an individual level and as a faithful collective.
If you are giving your time to lead in love, know that I am personally grateful for your pouring of your cup into others’ who are reaching empty. Your faith and work are essential—to those who benefit directly, but also to those who witness and follow. Our world now desperately needs this selfless servant leadership, however we can contribute.
Thank you for reading,