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My Lord, What a Morning!

I chose today’s anthem because of today’s reading (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). The reading states:

… For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have died. For this we declare to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will by no means precede those who have died. For the Lord himself, with a cry of command, with the archangel's call and with the sound of God's trumpet, will descend from heaven, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up in the clouds together with them to meet the Lord in the air …

The text of the anthem (a spiritual) mirrors this reading in a profound and emotional way. Compare this text:

My Lord, what a morning!

You will hear the trumpet sound,

To wake the nations underground.

You will hear the sinner cry,

To wake the nations underground.

You will hear the Christian shout,

To wake the nations underground,

Looking to my God’s right hand,

When the stars begin to fall.

In my mind, this music illustrates the power of our reading. Some might call me naïve, but I feel peaceful and hopeful when I hear this music and my faith is renewed.

Mark Crayton

Offertory Anthem: “My Lord, What a Morning!” arr. André Bellefeuille (1941-2006)

André Bellefeuille was a French-Canadian composer and conductor. He gained recognition in Canada around 1960 which, incidentally, was the year he debuted as a conductor. He studied music in Quebec, with Dr. J. A. Thompson, Maestro Wilfrid Pelletier, Czeslaw Kackzinski, Jeanne Landry, and in France with Nadia Boulanger, Igor Stravinsky, and Pierre Max Dubois. He studied in Germany with Herbert von Karajan and in the United States with Leonard Bernstein. His music has been performed by many choirs worldwide including King's College (Cambridge), Regensburg, Leipzig, Roger Wagner Chorale (Jeannine Wagner), Elmer Iseler Singers (Lydia Adams), Petits Chanteurs de Trois-Rivières (Paul-André Bellefeuille). He died suddenly in 2006 at the age of 64.

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