This is going to be an interesting year. We are going to have fun. Even while this pernicious uncertainty scatters our minds, derailing our sense of linear time… we are going to have fun. Even when we grow exhausted in our battles with fear, anxiety, and loss… we are going to have fun. Even while we do the serious work of community building; even as we struggle to learn new ways to interact and collaborate; even as we witness the ferocity of change in the world…we will have fun. Important fun.

I once had a heated argument with a musical colleague of mine who wrongly believed that music was “mere entertainment”. Had he never listened to the soul-searching musical miracles of Bach, Beethoven, or Brahms? Had he never wept openly at the sound of a Church choir? No, music is not mere entertainment. It is a life-saving brain balm. It is a building block of civil society. Our common songs bond us like a common language. It is medicine for the individual as well as society as a whole. We can’t live without it. And THAT is why it must be fun. It is too important to take it too seriously. It is most impactful when it’s fun. When we lose our playfulness, we stop learning. So, this year, I pledge to generate even more fun than usual. I pledge to laugh and be always joyful in our First Parish work. This is going to be a great year, no matter what reality looks like. In whatever ways we must adapt, that is what we will do. And we are so lucky to live in a time with the tools to stay in community. I am bubbling with optimism. I have exciting plans for every choir and I look forward to all the fun-work of helping to prepare Worship each week. We have so much music to share.

Youth Choir rehearsals (via Zoom) will be restarting after Church on September 20th at 11:30am. It’s going to be a lot of fun, but you already knew I was going to say that. If your family has not participated in any of the Youth Choirs, and you’re interested, please contact me at the email address below. Most of you already know that we have three Youth Choirs: Carol Choir which is for kids age 3-7; Junior Choir is age 8 through eighth grade; and Intermediate Choir is eighth grade through high school age, though they also sing with Junior Choir sometimes.

SINGERS!!! You know who you are. I know there are folks who would join Senior Choir if schedules allowed. Well, now is your chance to add your voice. We will be rehearsing via Zoom on Thursday evenings and you are welcome to join us. We have a lot of fun, as you probably surmised. We will be recording many pieces this year (remotely); music for First Parish services. Email me if you are interested in learning how to record your voice to be added to the choir. It’s really a simple process and the results are beautiful. We will also be offering everyone in the congregation opportunities to add their voices to various projects. We are going to have a lot of fun this year. (Did I already say that?) I have learned many new tricks over the summer.

Our Bell Choir is strategizing ways we can collaborate while still social distancing as well. We may have a few tricks up our sleeves. One thing is for certain… It is going to be fun.

Yes, it will be an interesting year, full of uncertainty about the details of the immediate future. But, the nice thing about uncertainty is that whatever happens is a surprise.

Thank You! I hope each of you feels like you can reach out to me anytime.

Your Music Director, Steve

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