A Moving Coincidcence
- David Brensinger
- Aug 01, 2013
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A Moving Coincidence
As I often do each summer, I attended the annual conference of the Association of Anglican Musicians. It is an organization of, primarily, musicians who work in the Episcopal Church. It is always a great week of beautiful liturgies, engaging conversations, meaningful presentations, and a relaxed time of catching up with colleagues and good friends.
This year’s conference was held in Denver, and a pre-conference event was planned. That event was an excursion to Pikes Peak via the cog railway. I’d learned, previously that the original words to the patriotic hymn “O beautiful for spacious skies” were first written in a poem by Katherine Bates as a result of her trip to the Peak. From the Peak, one can certainly understand the inspiration that could come from the incredible panorama at that altitude!
The Closing Eucharist of the conference was held on July 4th in St. John’s Cathedral, a beautiful Gothic building that inspires awe, great devotion, and engagement with the Creator. Now, when nearly 200 Episcopal musicians gather at a liturgy, the singing is always stunning, which is a moving experience in itself. But the service was, appropriately, capped with the singing of Bates’ text to the thrilling accompaniment of a fantastic organ played by a brilliant musician in a gorgeous space on Independence Day. It was one of those remarkable moments of grace when many events seemed to coalesce into one meaningful point in time. It, literally, took my breath away.
A moving coincidence, indeed!