Monday, March 8, 2010

Grateful for Composers: Francis Patrick O'Brien and Paul Tate

Happy Monday of the Third Week of Lent to you all.

I spent Friday evening and Saturday in Orlando. On Saturday, about 80 RCIA ministers gathered at Nativity Parish in Longwood, Florida, for a morning workshop focused on RCIA Paragraph 75.2, 3, 4. We focused on the Second Vatican Council's vision for the catechumenate as a period of apprenticeship. I hope that my words helped those in attendance in their efforts to bring the RCIA more closely in line with the Church's vision that the catechumenate is "not a mere expounding of doctrines and precepts." Here are a few photos I took at the workshop.

I was able to catch an earlier flight back to Chicago and was actually in my home before sunset—praise God!

Yesterday, I played for the two Sunday Masses at Saint James, my parish. I want to mention two wonderful pieces of music that we sang. The first was composed by my good friend Fr. Fran O'Brien. Fran and I lived across the hall from one another at St. John's Seminary in Boston, pictured here:

And here's a photo of the chapel at St. John's, where Fran and I worked together as music ministers:

At any rate, Fran's fine piece, The Cross of Jesus, was embraced by choir and assembly alike. You can find this great piece on GIA's web site by clicking here. We also sang one of my favorite pieces that Paul Tate has written. Take and Eat This Bread  has become a staple at St. James. I love the verses of this song. Each verse begins with the words "Come before the table; come with all your heart." The singing of this piece lifted my own heart. 

I am grateful today to these two fine composers; grateful for their willingness to share their gifts with the Church; and grateful for their friendship.

I hope that this is a good week for you.

Gotta sing. Gotta pray.


Paul said...

I wish we would see a new collection of Francis P. O'Brien Music! It's been awhile, and he has so many gifts to offer.

Chironomo said...

I had many good times talking with FP O'Brien while in Brockton... our Pastor, John Schatzel was Fran's "mentor" while he was in seminary, and he frequently came over to the rectory for lunch, etc after his assignment in Walpole (if I remember that correctly... I think it was Walpole!). A fine musician and an equally fine Priest!

Kerry said...

It would have been at St Timothy's in Norwood. I'm sure he's up to something new.