Psalm 57: 4, 6-10
They Can’t Take That Away From Me – Neil Murray (Sax) Bob Hudgins (Piano)
Earth Song – Voices United Choir
You Do Not Walk Alone – Voices United Choir
Come You Thankful People Come – Cast in Bronze
The Sacred Expressions of Music—Psalm 57: 4, 6-10
June 13, 2021—Music Sunday
We don’t know the situation the Psalmist is facing in our scripture this morning. But, it
has to be pretty bad , pretty dire to compare it to being set among a pride of lions
hungry for human flesh. Do you ever feel like that? Has COVID prompted feelings of
being like the prey of the virus, of being hunted by a predator? I wonder if that’s how
black people feel seeing the George Floyd video? I wonder if that’s how Indigenous
people feel when the discovery in Kamloops reminds them of the casual disregard for
their lives among the settler population? I wonder if that’s how Muslims feel when
weighing the implications of the simple decision of whether or not to go for a walk,
especially after last week’s attack in London? I wonder.
Yet, as people of faith, and I have heard this from Muslim leaders this week, we are
called to proclaim a truth that is deeper than surface fear that finds expression in hatred
and violence. That truth is that love, the love of God, though vulnerable to free will, to
fear, to ignorance, to hate, to greed is an ever present, steadfast and enduring reality.
This is what the Psalmist is doing in the latter half of the psalm, proclaiming with song
and the playing of instruments, harp and lute that the love of God is a deeper reality. All
beauty including music does this, it points a way through and forward if we will but
listen and watch. It’s why part of the response to George Floyd is the defiance of rap
and the lament and comfort of gospel music, it’s why drumming and chanting is a part of
vigils for the 215 children, it’s why the call to prayer and the incantations of prayer are
part of the response to the London tragedy. Music, all beauty grounds us in something
deeper, life-giving and uniting.
We are so blessed at Parkminster to have such great musical leadership and so many
people who are willing to share their gifts of song and instrument that point to this way,
that have seen us through these past many months of pandemic and upheaval, that have
helped to keep us together, worshipping and praising. I want to give you an
opportunity to express what music, especially Parkminster music has meant to you over
these past months, to offer your gratitude. Feel free to type your responses in the chat
or ask in the chat to turn on your camera and we’ll get you on.
Jeanne Foster : I am so grateful for the music ever week. It lifts my spirits and sometimes
moves me to tears. Thank you so much to Neil and everyone who is involved.
Debbie Miethig : Miss it. Minimal exposure. Like the Dunbars saying their voices have
deteriorated, so has my playing on the dulcimer. Music is powerful when it can be
shared with others in conjunction with others. Hoping all that can happen soon.
Kathleen & Rob : Kathleen – It keeps me grounded.
Deb Siertsema : It allows me to open my voice to sing along and know that no one can
Lani Kerbl : Music at Parkminster: my opportunity to sing in full voice and worship
through song. To share mu God given gift. Thank you Neil and Parkminster
Joscelyn Alexander : I’m grateful for the impact music can have to lift up anyone. When
my kids are feeling down, I can start up a dance party and it helps everyone feel better.
If my students are feeling down, we can play music games and as they play their pieces,
they perk up and are all smiles by the end of the lesson. It reminds them that they can
turn to whenever they have big feelings to express themselves or just to feel better.
Isobel Field : Belonging to an ensemble is so satisfying andcomforting—–making music
together is each of us contributing to the whole.
Wilma Bakelaar : John is saying that the music at Parkminster invited him/us to join the
church and continues to uplift and amaze us in what all our technology can do…Thank
Mark Demsey : grateful to the Parkminster music, and Parkminster in general, for an
anchor in my week.
Lisa Hicknell (she/her) : Just like the line in Earth Song we just performed, “Music and
singing has been my refuge.” Our virtual choir meetings have been a routine in a time
where there have been few routines, a way to keep connected with my Parkminster
family, and an opportunity for so much laughter!
Ellen : I am grateful for the community provided by Partminister at a time when we all
often alone. In Artistic swimming, music is key to the expression of feelings, as it is at
Joe Sheldon : the few weeks we had last fall to play Bells were wonderful.. It pointed
out how much we missed it … NOE the real challenge will be for Neil to retrain us !! !
Roberta Hickey : The music during this time has been truly uplifting.
Roberta Snider : I honour the memory of my Mother through music. It is how my faith
has grown throughout my life. I will forever be grateful to Jen Allan and Lee McWebb
for introducing me to the Park Minster Choir and congregation. God is great and I praise
Him through song.
Nancy : Echoing Mark’s comments earlier, the experience of recording with the choir has
made it very clear in a new way how we are better together!
Ellen : BTW: I loved the Sax music, who was that playing? I loved to see the bell choir
again, music can always touch our hearts in many ways.