This Month's Newsletter

The monthly Sing For Joy newsletter contains a letter from the program's host, Pastor Bruce Benson, along with a listing of music selections for each program and the corresponding scripture readings. If you'd like to receive a complimentary subscription, fill out our online request form for either the print newsletter or the electronic newsletter.

The Sing For Joy Newsletter: February 2017 / Year A
Bruce Benson Host Photo
by Pastor Bruce Benson, host

Not so many days ago the Christmas tree at our house was thanked for its service, undressed of its seasonal decorative uniform and set out for composting. That transition led me to notice ornaments that often get taken for granted in the haste to hang them on the tree when the season begins. The marking of a conclusion, an ending rather than a beginning, seems to make one notice differently a collection of seasonal items. Oh, there’s not much to notice about the usual shiny colored balls and lights that are always there; they tend not to stand out once removed from the tree. But then there are those other items, the ones that make you say, “When did we get this? Who gave us this?” I notice different ornaments each year, and they make me remember the various friends and relatives who gave them. This year I noticed two treble clef symbols and a miniature balalaika, gifts to my music-teacher wife, given by school children or church choir children (and their parents, of course). Because of those gifts, we annually have music on our Christmas tree, not just in the air around it. We like that.

By now, if you didn’t do it earlier, ornaments and the music of the season both get packed up and put away for another year. Theoretically, mice, flood, fire or storm could damage stored Christmas ornaments. Christmas music, on the other hand, is immune to such danger. As long as Christmas endures, so will its music, at least that music we consider beloved rather than merely popular. Ironically, what is popular tends to be short-lived, while music that is truly beloved (even if it never achieves so-called popularity) endures from generation to generation. Therefore, we need not fear for the safety of Christmas music; it will be strong, lovely and ready for singing come next December.

It is an even deeper irony — or is “mystery” the better term here — that what is safest from the ravages of time is something that is also most thoroughly in time. Music, one could say, exists only in time. As soon as the last note stops echoing in the cathedral, it is gone. Yet the earthquakes and fires that utterly destroy cathedrals, homes, monuments, artistic masterpieces and life itself cannot harm music. While there is life, there will be music. The One who says, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” must smile when we sing. Sing for joy. In any season.

Peace be with you,

Bruce Benson Signature
Pastor Bruce Benson

February 5, 2017

Fifth Sunday after Epiphany — Lectionary 5 (Year A)

(1R) Isaiah 58:1-9a (9b-12)
(PS) Psalm 112:1-9 (10)
(2R) 1 Corinthians 2:1-12 (13-16)
(G)   Matthew 5:13-20

This Little Light of MineAfrican American Spiritual / Paul J. Christiansen, arranger (G)
The Concordia Choir: Moorhead, MN / René Clausen
(CD) Folk Songs, Spirituals & Hymns / CONCORDIA RECORDINGS / E-2052
© Concordia Recordings, 901 8th Street South, Moorhead, MN, 56562, USA

Beatus Vir: Gloria et divitaeAntonio Vivaldi (PS)
English Chamber Orchestra / Jennifer Smith, soprano / Isobel Buchanan, soprano / Stephen Cleobury
(CD) Vivaldi Glorias / LONDON RECORDS (DECCA RECORDS) / 443 455-2
© 1994 London Records (Decca Records), 825 Eighth Avenue, New York, NY, 10019, USA

Beatus Vir Jean Langlais (PS)
The Choir of St. John's College / Alexander Martin, accompanist / George Guest
(CD) The Sound of St. John's / NIMBUS RECORDS / NI 5335
© 1992 Nimbus Records, Nimbus Records Wyastone Leys, Monmouth, NP5 3SR, United Kingdom

True Light Keith Hampton (G)
St. Olaf Conference on Worship, Theology, and the Arts Mixed Choir: Northfield, MN / Anton Armstrong
(CD) 2010 St. Olaf Conference on Worship, Theology and the Arts: Feast of the Epiphany /
ST. OLAF COLLEGE / Not For Resale
© 2010 St. Olaf College, 1520 St. Olaf Avenue, Northfield, MN, 55057, USA

Lord of Light (ABBOTT'S LEIGH)Cyril Vincent Taylor / John Ferguson, arranger (1R, G)
Massed Choirs of St. Olaf College: Northfield, MN / The St. Olaf Orchestra / John Ferguson
(CD) Child of Light Be Born in Us / ST. OLAF RECORDS / E-2757/8
© 2005 St. Olaf Records, St. Olaf College 1520 St. Olaf Avenue, Northfield, MN, 55057, USA


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February 12, 2017

Sixth Sunday after Epiphany — Lectionary 6 (Year A)

(1R) Deuteronomy 30:15-20
         or Sirach 15:15-20
(PS) Psalm 119:1-8
(2R) 1 Corinthians 3:1-9
(G)   Matthew 5:21-37
(E)   Season of Epiphany

Spirit of God, Descend Upon My Heart (MORECAMBE) Frederick C. Atkinson /
George Croly, lyricist
The Riverton Singers / William Baerg
© Riverton Productions, 225 Riverton Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba, R2L 0N1, Canada

Lord Jesus, Think on Me (ST. PAUL'S)Sir John Stainer / Synesius of Cyrene, lyricist /
Allen William Chatfield, translator
The Choir of St. Paul's Cathedral: London, United Kingdom / Barry Rose
(CD) Music for a Great Cathedral / GUILD / GMCD 7118
© 1996 Guild, Wiesholz 42b - 8262, Ramsen, Switzerland

Forgive Our Sins as we Forgive (EPWORTH) Charles Wesley / Rosamond E. Herklots, lyricist (G)
Choir of Wakefield Cathedral / Jonathan Bielby
(CD) The Complete New English Hymnal: Volume 11 / PRIORY RECORDS, LTD. / PRCD 7111
© 2002 Priory Records, Ltd., 3 Eden Court, Eden WayLeighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, LU7 4FY,
United Kingdom

Three Motets: Beati Quorum Via, Op. 38, No. 3Charles Villiers Stanford (PS)
Voices of Ascension: New York, NY / Dennis Keene
(CD) Hear My Prayer / DELOS / DE 3300
© 2005 Delos, Delos Productions, Inc., PO Box 343, Sonoma, CA , 95476, USA

Holy Spirit, Ever Dwelling (SALISBURY) Herbert Howells / Timothy Rees, lyricist (2R)
Saint Clement's Choir: Philadelphia, PA / Matthew Glandorf, accompanist / Peter Richard Conte
(CD) Hymns of Heaven and Earth / SONO LUMINUS / DOR-90259
© 1998 Sono Luminus, PO Box 227, 9 West Main St., Boyce, VA, 22620, USA

Like the Murmer of the Dove's Song (BRIDEGROOM) Peter Cutts / Carl Daw, lyricist (2R)
Hymn Society in the United States and Canada Conference Congregation
(CD) ...Into the Way of Peace / HYMN SOCIETY IN THE UNITED STATES AND CANADA / Not For Resale
© 2009 Hymn Society in the United States and Canada, 3400 Brook Road, Richmond, VA, 23227, USA

All Creatures of Our God and King (LASST UNS ERFREUEN) Geistliche Kirchengesänge /
St. Francis Assisi, lyricist / John Rutter, arranger / William H. Draper, translator
Massed Choirs of St. Olaf College: Northfield, MN / The St. Olaf Orchestra / Steven Amundson
(CD) Heaven and Earth, Awake and Sing / ST. OLAF RECORDS / E-3504/05
© 2013 St. Olaf Records, St. Olaf College 1520 St. Olaf Avenue, Northfield, MN, 55057, USA


While there is life, there will be music.
-Pastor Bruce Benson

February 19, 2017

Seventh Sunday after Epiphany — Lectionary 7 (Year A)

(1R) Leviticus 19:1-2, 9-18
(PS) Psalm 119:33-40
(2R) 1 Corinthians 3:10-11, 16-23
(G)   Matthew 5:38-48

Christ is Made the Sure Foundation (WESTMINSTER ABBEY) Henry Purcell / Latin Hymn, lyricist / Richard Marlow, arranger / John Mason Neale, translator (2R)
The Choir of Trinity College: Cambridge, United Kingdom / Richard Marlow
(CD) Descants from Trinity / CONIFER CLASSICS / 75605 51281 2
© 1996 Conifer Classics, England

The Church's One Foundation (AURELIA)Samuel Sebastian Wesley / Samuel J. Stone, lyricist (2R)
The Choir of Wells Cathedral / Malcolm Archer
(CD) The English Hymn, Vol. 2: Jerusalem the Golden / HYPERION / CDP12102
© 2001 Hyperion, Hyperion Records Limited, P.O. Box 25, London, SE9 1AX, United Kingdom

Teach Me, O Lord Thomas Attwood (PS)
The Choir of St. Paul's Cathedral: London, United Kingdom / John Scott
(CD) The English Anthem - Volume 4 / HYPERION / CDA66678
© 1994 Hyperion, Hyperion Records Limited, P.O. Box 25, London, SE9 1AX, United Kingdom

Teach Me, O LordWilliam Byrd (PS)
The Choir of Clare College: Cambridge, England / Timothy Brown
(CD) Parish Anthems / GAMUT RECORDINGS / GAMD 505
© 1991 Gamut Recordings, Gamut House Lancaster Way Ely, Cambridge, CB6 3NP, England

Love DivineJonathan Bielby / Charles Wesley, lyricist (G)
St. Bartholomew's Thursday Choir: New York, NY / Vincent H. Edwards
(CD) Sing in Exultation! / PRO ORGANO / CD 7150
© 2001 Pro Organo, P.O. Box 8338, South Bend, IN, 46660-8338, USA

Love Divine, All Loves Excelling (HYFRYDOL) Rowland Hugh Prichard / Charles Wesley, lyricist /
John Rutter, arranger
The Cambridge Singers / John Rutter
(CD) Sing, Ye Heavens / COLLEGIUM RECORDS / COLCD 126
© 2000 Collegium Records, Naxos of America, Inc., Suite 28, 1810 Columbia Avenue, Franklin, TN, 37064


Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heaven, to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.

-Charles Wesley

February 26, 2017

Transfiguration of Our Lord — Last Sunday after Epiphany (Year A)

(1R) Exodus 24:12-18
(PS) Psalm 2
         or Psalm 99
(2R) 2 Peter 1:16-21
(G)   Matthew 17:1-9

Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise (Stanzas 1, 2 and 4) (ST. DENIO) Welsh Traditional /
Walter Chalmers Smith, lyricist
The Choir of St. Paul's Cathedral: London, United Kingdom / Christopher Dearnley, accompanist /
John Scott

(CD) Praise to the Lord: Favourite Hymns from St. Paul's Cathedral / HELIOS / CDH88036
© 1989 Helios, P.O. Box 25, London, SE9 1AX, England

When Morning Gilds the Skies (LAUDES DOMINI)Sir Joseph Barnby /
Katholisches Gesangbuch, lyricist / Rev. Edward Caswall, translator
Choir of Yorkminster Park Baptist Church / Ronald S. Jordan, accompanist / Catherine M. Palmer
(CD) The Joy of God / MARQUIS CLASSICS / ERAD 175
© 1996 Marquis Classics, 30 Kenilworth Avenue, Toronto, M4L 3S3, Canada

Christ Upon the Mountain PeakFrank W. Boles / Brian Wren, lyricist (G)
The Choir of St. Paul's Episcopal Church: Indianapolis, IN / Dwight Thomas, accompanist / Frank W. Boles
(CD) O Hear Us, Lord / PRO ORGANO / CD 7058
© 1998 Pro Organo, P.O. Box 8338, South Bend, IN, 46660-8338, USA

Lux Æterna: O Nata Lux Morten Lauridsen (G)
Polyphony / Stephen Layton
(CD) Morten Lauridsen: Lux Æterna / HYPERION / CDA67449
© 2005 Hyperion, Hyperion Records Limited, P.O. Box 25, London, SE9 1AX, United Kingdom

Transfiguration Craig Philips / Mechtild of Magdeburg, lyricist (G)
The Choir of All Saints' Episcopal Church: Beverly Hills, CA / Dale Adelmann
(CD) Be Still, My Soul / GOTHIC / G 49251
© 2006 Gothic, Gothic Records, Inc. P.O. Box 414, Orcas, WA, 98280, USA

Beautiful Savior (CRUSADERS HYMN) Silesian Folk Tune / Münster Gesangbuch, lyricist /
F. Melius Christiansen, arranger

The St. Olaf Choir: Northfield, MN / Anna Shevik, soprano / Anton Armstrong
(CD) Great Hymns of Faith: Volume III / ST. OLAF RECORDS / E-3386
© 2011 St. Olaf Records, St. Olaf College 1520 St. Olaf Avenue, Northfield, MN, 55057, USA

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In Memory Of:

All of our loved ones who have gone before us
Wilma Andreae
Una Bonkrode, who lived to age 107
Charlie Brehm, my late husband
Suzan Deaton
Mrs. Della Dillard
Mr. & Mrs. Vernon E. Evans
J. Edwin Henneberger
Pastor Donald Hoger, husband
Julia and Noel Holm
my mother, Jane Ingles
Kevin Jantz
Kenneth Jennings
Bernice Kastens
Helen Kemp
Jennifer Koenig
Pastor Jennifer Koenig
Larry Lofgren
Helen R. McGonegal
Ursula Muller-Eberhard
Kathy Pelletier (mom)
John Peterson
Jane B. Shore
Margaret Huss Smith
David L. Stenseth
Evelyn Strader
Shirley Young

In Honor Of:

my friend, John Howard
Rev. and Mrs. John M. Mondal
Jeff O'Donnell - great job!
Randolph College Music Department
Zee Anne Reishus, my church choir director

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