MUSIC NOTES

Epiphany, meaning “manifestation” or “appearance,” is a season that shows three mysteries. The first mystery (January 6) is the manifestation of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the world, to the Magi (Wise Men). In the Gospel for today, the second mystery is Christ’s baptism where he was made manifest to the world (the original Gospel for Epiphany beginning in the Eastern Church). The Holy Trinity in its three persons is shown in the descent of the Holy Ghost (in the form of a dove), the voice of God the Father and of the Divine Sonship of Christ.

Prelude        Meditation        Louis Vierne

Louis Vierne (1870-1937), Notre Dame Cathedral organist in Paris, was born 150 years ago this year. Considered one of the major 20th century organ composers, Vierne wrote his meditation (from his “24 pieces in free style” in each of the major and minor keys) with expressive melodic content.

Introit        Omnis terra.

    (Psalm 66:4) All the world shall worship thee, O God: sing of thee, and praise thy Name, O thou Most Highest. (Psalm 66:1-2) O be joyful in God, all ye lands, sing praises unto the honour of his Name: make his praise to be glorious.

Gradual

    (Psalm 107:20-21) The Lord sent his Word and healed them: and they were saved from their destruction. O that men would therefore praise the Lord for his goodness: and declare the wonders that he doeth for the children of men.

    Alleluia, alleluia. (Psalm 148:2) Praise the Lord, all ye angels of his: praise him all his host. Alleluia.

Offertory

    (Psalm 66:1-2a) O be joyful in God, all ye lands: sing praises unto the honour of his Name. (Psalm 66:16) O come hither and hearken, all ye that fear God: and I will tell you what the Lord hath done for my soul. Alleluia.

    Organ    Prelude in Eb Major                      Alfred Hollins

Hollins (1865-1942) was a blind English organist who performed concerts on four continents and organist in Edinburgh, Scotland for 40 years.

Communion

    (Mark 1:11) And there came a voice from heaven, saying: Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Postlude      Fugue in D Major                  Ludwig van Beethoven

Beethoven (1770-1827), born 250 years ago this year in Bonn, Germany, is best known for his 9 symphonies, chamber and piano music. As with most composers of the time, Beethoven began his career as an organist. His fugue was written when he was 13 when he auditioned for assistant Court organist in Bonn.