Wednesday greetings from the state of Texas.
I am here helping lead the music and prayer for a Catholic healthcare system's annual leadership conference. I am working with another musician who has organized a choir and our first rehearsal today went quite well. So it should be a good few days here.
People often ask me questions like "What church to you play at?" or "Do you have a regular church gig?" or "Are you the musician at your parish?"
I answer all of these questions now with a "no." I was a full-time music and liturgy director from 1984 through 1999. I occasionally substitute in my own parish, but that may only happen once every two years. Being here and practicing some challenging pieces to accompany the choir and having that sense of satisfaction when a group of singers simply creates a beautiful sound makes me miss those music-making days.
I often tell people that my dream retirement is returning to a small parish with a nice little choir and a few weekend Masses and the occasional funeral or wedding. I do miss playing and thank the Lord that I still have my chops. Perhaps what I miss most is the community that choirs form. And what I miss the least is the evening meetings!
Gotta sing. Gotta pray.