Monday, February 8, 2010

The Accession Service

Choral Evensong today at the Cathedral Church of St James. The Lieutenant Governor and his consort were in attendance, he reading the First Lesson. They attend a nondenominational church in the suburbs east of the city; Her Honour is a Gospel singer of some repute. This must have seemed quite high to them. They were formally seated by the Dean of Toronto, His Honour giving a wave as he passed up the main aisle on his mobility device.

The service was almost entirely choral (but not solemn), including the versicles and responses and royal suffrages (with the 1662 ending to "Give peace in our time, O Lord"). The setting was Stainer in B flat. A few die-hards including myself joined the choir during the psalms, which were entirely singable Anglican chant. The officiant was the Associate Priest; the Dean of Toronto preached. The Royal and National Anthems were sung, along with "I vow to thee, my country."


Michael said...

We did festal evensong for Accession Day at a former church of mine a few years ago. That was fun. Ended with the first verse of the National Anthem, then off we went.

Geoff said...

I do regret that there was no Te Deum.

Felicity Pickup said...

re "the entirely singable Anglican chant"

-except for the final verses of the second psalm that the choir sang beyond the v.1-7(printed out in the Order of Service). Not knowing my psalter well enough and not finding a BCP in my pew rack, I had to let the choir carry on unaided.

-at which point the L-G's aide-de-camp had properly escorted him to the lectern ready to read the First Lesson at the point indicated in the program. I was not amused to see a man with a leg brace, and limited endurance for standing, waiting for a choir to shut up.

-My pew mate gave up on the congregation's assigned role of standing and listening and sat for much of it. She summed up at the end of the service, "Too much standing ... I go to Metropolitan United."

Geoff said...

An unfortunate episode indeed.

BillyD said...

I love "I Vow to Thee, My Country." Unfortunately we never sing it, although there isn't anything in it that a Unitedstatesian couldn't affirm, it seems to me.