This morning I noticed the snowdrops against the limestone of St. Andrew’s. Being plants that wait not for spring to flower, they have been symbols of strong hope for many through the centuries.

These snowdrops greeted me with gospel assurance as I joined John and family to record a brief time of praise and prayer in the sanctuary, as a witness of strong hope in this time of challenge. We pray you will join us and join together in Christian worship (with thanks to Jeremy, Meghan, Danielle, Margaret, Greg and special thanks to Christopher and John for offering this gift to us).

A few updates on congregational life conclude this post.

Podcast – https://anchor.fm/st-andrews-presbyterian-church-kingston/episodes/St–Andrews-Presbyterian-Church-Kingston—March-21–2020-ebp2pa/a-a1o9hcv

Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=85d9XWOWkgQ&feature=youtu.be

Script –

Notes from the Director of Music

It has always been my hope that providing a bit more information about the music presented at St. Andrew’s services will add to its understanding, appreciation and impact. And so with this the first recorded presentation, as a substitute for an actual service, I felt compelled to tell you a bit more about the music.
In 1535, a German hymn book printed a hymn with a text by Lazarus Spengler about Adam’s fall and the resultant redemption by Jesus Christ. A tune which had its origin in a secular song sung by the soldiers at the Battle of Pavia, was provided for the text and first appeared in the Gesangbuch of 1536. Durch Adam’s Fall ist ganz verderbt has inspired composers like Telemann and Buxtehude to make arrangements. Franz William Zachau (1663-1727) was the teacher of G. F. Handel and composed a little chorale prelude based on the tune. The original tune followed by Zachau’s piece are presented as a Prelude. Yesterday, March 21, was the 335th birthday of Johann Sebastian Bach, born in the same year as Handel. We can often look a little deeper into Bach’s music and find some musical patterns which are based on the text. In his chorale prelude based on Durch Adam’s Fall , Adam’s fall is represented by a recurring falling interval in the pedal part. A translation of the first verse appeared in a Moravian Hymn Book of 1826:

When Adam fell, the frame entire
 Of nature was infected;
The source whence came the poison dire
Was not to be corrected,
The lust accurs’d, indulg’d at first,
Brought death as its production’
But God’s free grace hath sav’d our race
From mis’ry and destruction.

The motet which we were able to do with our little group of singers, was probably composed by Richard Farrant (1530-1580) but other composers such as Christopher Tye have been credited. The beautiful text comes from a prayer book of 1566. The text is as follows:

Lord, for Thy tender mercies sake, lay not our sins to our charge,
But forgive that is past, and give us grace to amend our sinful lives,
To decline from sin and incline to virtue,
That we may walk with a perfect heart
Before Thee now and evermore.

We put together this little service with some sadness that you could not be with us. This is a challenging and I am sure a lonely time for many of you and I hope that this recording will be of some help and comfort.

Recording the tower bells
Recording the music and prayers inside

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Beginning tomorrow, a daily email will be sent, sharing thoughts by various members of the congregation. If you would like to receive this, please send your request with your name, entitled ‘Daily Thoughts’, to info@standrewskingston.org

Updates
– all congregational and community group activities within the St. Andrew’s facilities have been suspended until further notice
– the interior plastering and painting of the sanctuary around the tower doors is now complete!
– the Kingston Lionhearts are now distributing packaged dinners seven evenings a week in Skeleton Park, 6-7 p.m.
– two youth of the congregation have delivered groceries within the congregation: if you would find this helpful, contact a.johnston@standrewskingston.org 
– a member of the congregation who works for Canadian Blood Services mentions that the response to a call for donors this week has been amazing!

We are not sure what form the next Sunday contribution will take, but stay tuned!

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