To God through music: it’s a FESTivity!
Providence Associate, Jane Fischer, highlights a special activity to occur at the FEST!
Sisters’ hands are raised. See? A pitch-pipe sounds. Hear it? Breaths are drawn, she signals, and we begin: “Holy God, we praise thy name!” Or how about … “Bless us, guard us, ever keep us…” You know it, don’t you? Get ready …”An Army of Youth flying the standards of truth…” keep going now … ”Bless this house, Oh Lord we pray!” Wait a minute! “Mother Beloved!” “Hail, Holy Queen enthroned above…!”
I don’t remember which came first, but I love lyrics and I love music. As a Providence Associate, I was thrilled to be asked to help plan activities for the Saint Mother Theodore Guerin FEST this year. While brainstorming on the way to the first planning meeting, I was listening to my Sisters of Providence music CD and it came to me … a phrase from my childhood –“To God through Music.” That’s it! It’s an activity that celebrates music and the good Sisters of Providence who composed and taught it! Let’s have a Providential Sing-A-Long! Let’s celebrate their work, their books, and their music! What a perfect fit as we celebrate the 175th year at this year’s FEST.
Here’s a sample: Walk, walk, rest, rest. Quar-ter, quar-ter, Half Note. We often clapped with each syllable. Now try this one: WALK-hold, WALK-hold, WALK, walk, WALK-hold. I thought you’d remember. This is how we learned to count music: “Johnny had a little dog and Bingo was his name, sir.” Sister would help us first by clapping out the rhythm. I’ll bet you can still do it. If you made some claps louder than others, you also remembered the lesson on accenting a note! I pulled that from a recently acquired a copy of “To God through Music” (book three), which is just a little marked up from St. Mary’s School in Storm Lake, Iowa. During the sing-along at the FEST, we will also be featuring selections from this series and talking about the history of music with the Sisters of Providence.
When Saint Mother Theodore said, “No piano, no school” it was because she knew the value of the arts in a well-rounded education leading to a better life. We’re going to celebrate that legacy at this year’s FEST. “All creatures of our God and King! Lift up your voices, let us sing!” Or just sit and listen. Someone once said, “Those who sing pray twice.” Come join us in St. Joseph’s Chapel of Owens Hall, for a song fest, a memory fest, and a prayer fest. Bring your memories and your voice along. Let us all rejoice in song.
Please feel free to post a reply here and share your SP musical memory.