So far I’ve focused on blog posts relating to my book and to my career coaching. Today’s a great day for launching into a totally different area of my life, sacred music.
For the last 3+ years, I’ve been leading the Gregorian Chant Schola (choir) at St Elizabeth Ann Seton parish. I have to admit that this is a tremendous journey of discovery and learning.
Realize that I have minimal qualifications for this job. I had lots of musical training up through high school, but didn’t really do much with that until I joined our church choir in about 1998. But in 2005 there was a need for someone to jump in and act as leader for the Gregorian Chant, so I volunteered.
It seemed like it might be fun.
Well, fun, yes, and incredibly challenging. Here’s this music which has been around for nearly 2000 years, and indeed has roots back into ancient civilizations. The body of knowledge, both what we know about and what’s been lost, is truly astounding. And these are people who are MUCH smarter than I, and MUCH more spiritual. It’s truly humbling.
And I know nothing of Latin, upon which Gregorian Chant is based. So that’s another journey of exploration in addition to the music itself.
I thought it might be nice to have a little clue about this – after all, I was supposed to be the leader – so I attended a workshop at the local Abbey of St Walburga back in 2006. In 2007 I went to a wonderful workshop at St Meinrad Archabbey in Indiana – an absolutely wonderful experience which helped me appreciate how little I knew.
Last year, I attended the Sacred Music Colloquium in Chicago. It was such an astounding experience – at many levels – that I made it my top priority to go again this year. So I’ll be returning to Chicago again on June 22nd, looking forward to meeting many friends and jumping into the musical journey with both feet.
All this is context, because I plan to blog while at the Colloquium. I figure that I should be able to capture a few thoughts each day before I fall into a heap of elated exhaustion.
I hope to meet some of you there, some of the friends I’ve made in the rapidly growing Sacred Music community. And hey, it will be a wonderful distraction from the career change I’m in the midst of.