Weeks Music Service

Sunday, December 9, 2018 • 10am

On Sunday, December 9, the LPC Chancel Choir, guest singers from the congregation and the community, soprano soloist Amy Collins, and the Amethyst Strings will present a lush new setting of the Magnificat, written in 2010 by Norwegian composer Kim André Arnesen. The Magnificat, Mary’s song of praise upon learning that she will bear God’s son (“My soul magnifies the Lord…”), has been set to music by innumerable composers across the ages, from Monteverdi and Bach to Rachmaninoff and Rutter. In describing his new setting, Arnesen writes, “I have tried to express what a young, poor woman must have felt on receiving such a message: wonder, devotion, gratitude, joy, humility, hope, and compassion.” These adjectives reflect Pope Benedict XVI’s teaching on the Hebrew word anawim (“poor ones”): “those faithful who not only recognize themselves as ‘poor’ in the detachment from all idolatry of riches and power, but also the profound humility of a heart emptied of the temptation to pride and open to the bursting in of the divine saving grace.”

Mary’s Song is a perfect example of a heart both humble and open to God’s grace and Arnesen’s expressive music effectively portrays Mary’s wonderment, humility, and devotion. As Gramophone Reviews describes it, this is “warmly compassionate music, which positively glows with its soaring, beautifully arched melodic lines.” Arnesen combines familiar harmonies with delicious melodies to create a reflective, prayerful work whose tone ranges from haunting to luxurious. Plan to join us during the regular 10 am service for what is sure to be a moving Advent experience.

The Weeks Music Service is made possible through the Weeks Memorial Music Endowment established by Kent and Karen Weeks in loving memory of John, Helen and Gardner Weeks.