Saturday, October 8, 2016

Beautiful service

Today, John and Cynthia joined Ellen and myself in a drive down to the Church of Redeemer in Chestnut Hill, MA for Betsey's Memorial Service. It was everything that Betsey had hoped for, I'm sure, when she requested it before she died, and all and more that we had imagined it would be. Michael Murray, the  organist and choir director, played organ pieces by Bach, Elgar and Widor, and led a fine choir of 16 voices in at least five anthems from the repertoire of Anglican church music. Three pieces echoed Betsey and Rob's wedding, including Vaughn-Williams' The Call, and the Widor Tocotta from his Symphony V for organ. Rob brought many tears as well as smiles in a touching remembrance of how he and Betsey met. Two of Betsey's dearest friends-both named Julia!-were readers, one from her Columbia, MO years, and one from college years at Wellesley. The latter, Julia Grimeade, had come up from Florida where she and her husband had had to evacuate their house because of Hurricane Matthew! At the reception following the service I spoke with Jock Toulmin, who lived next door to us in Providence back in the 60's. I hadn't seen him since 1967! So it was a remarkable and moving day. 

            Church of the Redeemer 

      The sanctuary before the service

            The choir rehearsing

Katie, Ellen, and Cynthia waiting in a parlor before the service. 

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