The music ministry at Emmanuel Episcopal Church has been serving this community since our parish was founded as Emmanuel Episcopal Mission in the year 1914. Even two years prior, in 1912, one of the earliest fundraisers for the building of the church was a concert given by a local musician who donated his fee and all concert ticket revenue to the “church fund.” Our founders and the generations of people who have worshiped here knew the power and importance of music in the church. They have all given of their time, talent, and treasure to see this work continue. Over the decades through to today, our musicians have one goal: to participate in and transform worship through the transcendent power of music. We believe that music is a language of God. We believe that God’s words, through music, accompany us in all of the moments of our lives from birth to death and that it is our calling to give voice on earth to those words from heaven. When we celebrate and when we mourn, God’s language of music is there. We believe that music can amplify the written and spoken words of God’s love in a way that is beyond our understanding. Music can clarify and magnify the Gospel so that our ears and hearts can hear it more clearly so that we can use their messages to create a better world.
Choral Music has been a part of worship at Emmanuel since our founding and is very much valued by our church. Today, we know we are a part of a great tradition of excellence in music that seeks to welcome all who wish to participate and to give them the tools they need to join in our ministry. We take this ministry of music and welcome seriously. The Emmanuel Choir is a group of dedicated people (both volunteers and paid section leaders) who gather weekly to rehearse and sing for Sunday liturgies during the months from September to June. In addition to our regular work on Sunday mornings, the choir is an integral part of special liturgies throughout the year including during Advent and Christmas, Ash Wednesday, and Holy Week to name a few. Singers of all levels of experience are welcome and encouraged to be a part of this friendly community of musicians. Fred and our section leaders will teach you everything you need to know. Rehearsals take place on Thursday evenings from 7:00 to 8:30. The Emmanuel Choir meets on Sunday mornings at 9:15 to prepare to sing for the 10:00 Eucharist.
Singing in a choir is among the best kind of religious education a child can get. We are currently working to build a children’s music program at Emmanuel. As a start we are creating a children’s choir that will occasionally sing for Sundays and other special services. Rehearsals take place for thirty minutes on selected Sundays after the 10:00 AM service. In our time together we play music games, work on music skills, and rehearse the various anthems we will share in church. Many times, the choir joins the upper voices of The Emmanuel Choir. We know that schedules are busy and so we are working to have our rehearsals on Sundays when the most children will be present in church. If you have a child aged five and up, contact Fred to have them join in!
Guest musicians are an important part of worship at Emmanuel. We are blessed to have members of our congregation and community who share their gifts with us on many occasions. From kids to adults, all are welcome to be a part of this ministry! If you have a child or grandchild who wants to show off their new band instrument or piano lesson song, this is for them. If you’ve been working on a piece and want to share, this is for you! If you and your friends have a chamber group, bring them in!
Interested in choir or other musical offerings? Contact our Music Director, Fred McIlroy