A large congregation gathered yesterday in Saint Andrew's Church, Malahide to celebrate the life of our good friend Mervyn Percival. The small Church was filled to capacity with many braving the elements outside in order to pay their respects to his family, Margaret, Geoff, Roger, his Mother in Law Edie, his Brother Charles, and Daughter in Law Emma and his Grandchildren and extended family circle.
Mervyn's love of music was acknowledged by many in the course of the service, and it was a fitting tribute that members of St. Bartholomew's Choir together with St Andrew's Church Choir, The Strollers, and the Clef Club all gathered in his honour. Following the service Mervyn was laid to rest in the adjoining churchyard.
I have known Mervyn for many years, first meeting with him in the 1980's when I joined Christchurch Cathedral Choir, Mervyn had only recently resigned from the Cathedral Choir at that stage to persue his business interests, and I literally, followed in his footsteps as a Cathedral chorister. Throughout my time in the Cathedral, I would meet Mervyn following board meetings, and at all the major services.
Although, I had met Mervyn on many occasions in the 1980's it was not until the summer of 1995 when our friendship was to develop, when I joined St. Bartholomew's Choir. Over the past 12 years, I have enjoyed his company, both in the choir and socially, and am saddened by his passing. He was a true gentleman in every sense of the word, generous, and very fair in all his dealings, and although he is no longer with us in the flesh, his spirit will live on in our hearts for many years.
May he rest in peace.
Very Revd. Desmond Harman
It is with sadness that we report the untimely death of the Very Reverend Desmond Harman, Dean of Christchurch Cathedral. May he rest in peace.
Stanford Concert 2007
Last night, history was made in St. Bartholomew’s as both Boys and Girls choirs joined forces with the Gentlemen for the first time at the Annual Christmas concert. A large audience were treated to a mixture of traditional and modern carols, interspersed with readings from Alan Stanford, who delighted young and old with Christmas stories from the Bible to Charles Dickens. We thank Alan for taking time out of his busy schedule year by year to be with us for this annual Concert.
We must also put on record our thanks to Peter Parshall, our interim Director of Music, for all his work and encouragement over recent weeks, and for his careful preparation of the programme and logistics for the Concert.
The Choirs continue their build up to Christmas this week, with rehearsals on both Wednesday and Friday. The Girls join the Gentlemen on Christmas Eve for the Midnight Mass of the Nativity, and the Boys and Gentlemen lead the worship on Christmas Day for the Solemn Eucharist of the Incarnation. Full details of the music for both services can be found on the Diary page.
After Christmas, the choirs take a break for holiday, resuming for rehearsal on Friday 4th January. The New Year begins with a Solemn Eucharist to mark the feast of Epiphany on Sunday 6th January, and later that day the Choir travel to All Saints Church, Carnew, Co. Wicklow to lead the worship at a service of nine lessons and carols at 5:00pm.
Advent and Christmas 2007
Last Sunday, the first Sunday of Advent marked the beginning of a very busy season for both Choirs.
Fr. John McKay, in his sermon at the Solemn Eucharist examined the meaning of the word Advent, and explored the different ways which people look on the coming of the Christ-child, and the various expectations associated with the Christmas season.
Later in the day, the full choir took part in the annual Advent Procession, a service of music and readings for Advent Sunday. One of the traditions at this service is the singing of the great "O" plainsong antiphons, and the Advent Prose "Drop down ye Heavens from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness".
The busy season continues on Sunday 9th December, with a Service of Lessons and Carols at 6:00pm featuring the Girls Choir and Gentlemen. On Sunday 16th December at 7:00pm, history will be made when the Boys and Girls Choirs combine forces for the first time at the annual Concert of Carols and Festive Readings. We thank Alan Stanford for giving his time year by year for this event.
The services for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day commence with the Midnight Mass of the Nativity, the setting of the Mass in D by Mozart with the Girls and Gentlemen of the Choir. The Solemn Eucharist of the Incarnation follows at 11:00am on Christmas Day, the setting of the Mass in G by Schubert with the full Choir. The Celebrant and Preacher at both services is Fr. John McKay.
May we wish all visitors to this site a Happy and Peaceful Christmas.
On Sunday we remembered the faithful departed in the context of the Annual Solemn Requiem of All Souls Day, transferred this year due to the interregnum and the recent Pastoral visit of the Archbishop. The musical setting was the Requiem by Gabriel Faure. The Organist for this service was Fraser Wilson, recently appointed Director of Music, who will be taking up his appointment in March 2008.
We are pleased to report that Fr. John and Rhona McKay have taken up residence in the Vicarage on a temporary basis whilst Fr. John is looking after the Sunday services up to 6th January 2008. The 9:00 am (Sunday) Celebration of the Eucharist has been suspended until a new Vicar has been installed. The weekday services in St. Mary's Convent are being maintained for the interregnum by Fr. Charles Mullen, Dean's Vicar of St. Patrick's Cathedral. Canon Tom Haskins, Vicar of St. Ann's Church, Dawson Street, is looking after all other pastoral calls.
The advertisement for the vacancy has appeared on both the main Church of Ireland website, and on the Diocesan website. It can be viewed here. A closing date of 30th November 2007 has been been mentioned in the advertisement, after which short lists will be drawn up by the boards of nomination.
Next Sunday is the Feast of Christ the King, and we will be welcoming Canon Ginnie Kennerley, retired Rector of Timolin group of Parishes, as our Preacher.
Rehearsals continue for the celebrations of Advent and Christmas. This year both Boys and Girls Choirs will join the Gentlemen of the Choir for the Annual Concert of Carols and Festive Readings with Alan Stanford which will take place on Sunday 16th December at 7:00pm (note time). Full details of all services can be found on this website under Music Lists.
We welcomed Father John McKay back to St Bartholomew’s as our Celebrant at the Solemn Eucharist of All Saints Day. Fr John and his wife Rhona are no strangers to all of us at St Bartholomew’s, and we are delighted to have them among us again for the next two months.
The news of four Clerical Vacancies in The united Diocese has now been posted on the Diocesan website, and those interested have been invited to apply to the Archbishop’s Secretary for further details. This is the first step in the process to appoint a new Incumbent, and is a new development which allows interested parties to obtain a Parish profile before submitting a formal application for the vacancy. A formal Advertisment for the Vacancy will appear once the Archbishop has received the reports from the Glebewardens, and he meets with the Parochial Nominators.
The Archbishop will preside and preach at the Solemn Eucharist service next Sunday 11th November, when the Choir will sing Haydn's Little Organ Mass. The Annual Solemn Requiem will now take place on the following Sunday (18th November) with music by Gabriel Faure. Those wishing to remember relatives and friends by name at this service are requested to add the names to the list at the back of the Church by next Sunday.
We welcomed Fr. John Marchant, Chaplain to DCU and Curate of Powerscourt Group of Parishes as our Celebrant and Preacher on Sunday 21st October. We thank John for standing in at very short notice as Fr. Alan Matchett was unable to be with us due to illness.
The Glebe has now been inspected, and the next stage of the appointment process for a new Vicar will begin shortly. For those not familiar with the process, the information is to be found on the main Church of Ireland web site.
The new Boy Choristers are settling in well, and there are encouraging signs for the future. The acting Director of Music, Peter Parshall would like to stress on all parents the importance of Choir Practices at this time. We urge that the boys attend both Wednesday and Friday rehearsals, and that the girls attend each Wednesday as both choirs will be very busy in the coming weeks as the seasons of Advent and Christmas are now only a matter of weeks away, and programmes for Concerts and Carol Services need to be planned and rehearsed fully.
Please note, the services on Sunday 28th October will be sung by the Gentlemen of the Choir only, and as schools are closing for Half-Term. There will also be no rehearsals for the Boys on Friday 26th October and for the Boys and Girls on Wednesday 31st October. Rehearsals resume forBoys and Gentlemen on Friday 2nd November.
Following the departure of Fr. Michael last Sunday, St. Bartholomew’s Church is now officially under the care of the Rural Dean, Canon Neil McEndoo, Rector of Holy Trinity Rathmines.
Please pardon our appearance as necessary restoration work to the windows at the West end of the Church has now commenced, and scaffolding is in place both inside and outside the building. It must be noted that for the duration of these works, the pews at the back of the Church will remain closed off for safety reasons.
We welcomed our former Curate, Fr. Albert Ogle as Celebrant and Preacher at the Solemn Eucharist. In his sermon he shared his thoughts on how we, as a Nation “missed out” on several opportunities recently to show the World that we were an all-inclusive society. In the same context he likened the situation to that in St. Bartholomew’s as we experienced our first Sunday of the inter-regnum, and as we face a period of uncertainty, it is also a good time for Parishoners and Vestry to become stronger, and face the future with an open mind.
The nomination process to find a new Vicar will begin shortly following an Audit of the Glebe, after which the Parochial Nominators meet the Archbishop, and the Vacancy is advertised. The Nominators have then a period of three months to interview and meet prospective applicants, at the end of this period, they meet with the Archbishop again, and should they fail to come to agreement, the appointment process passes to the Archbishop and four Clerical Nominators. Once an appointment is made, the successful candidate may be required to give notice to his/her current Parish and Diocese. The whole process from start to finish is a lengthy one, and requires a good deal of thought and discussion, in the meantime, the Parish will continue “business as usual”, with the exception of the 9:00am Sunday Eucharist service which will be suspended from the End of October until an appointment is made.
At the last Vestry meeting, it was decided to keep everyone informed of Parish events on a weekly basis, and this information will be included on the weekly service sheets until further notice, we will also update the Parish website regularly with news as it comes to hand. Full details of Choral services up to end of December can be found under “music lists” on this website.
Director of Music
The Vicar has appointed Fraser Wilson ARCO as Organist and Director of Music in succession to Malcolm Wisener. This was on the unanimous request of the Standing Committee of the Vestry, in consultation with the Choirs and with the encouragement of Philip Stopford, Organist of Belfast Cathedral and external musical advisor.
Fraser was formerly Sub Organist at St John's, Ranmoor and Organ Scholar at Christ Church Cathedral. Currently acting Organist and Director of Music at St Matthews, Carver Street, Sheffield, he will assume his duties in 2008. Peter Parshall will remain as Interim Director of Music until his arrival.
An appreciation - Malcolm Wisener
I have never encountered a time when Malcolm was not in control of things. From a quiet evensong to a Schubert mass, to shepherding the choir across Paris via the Metro from 'digges' to San Sulpice with ages ranging from 8 to 70 years. Tours were undertaken to several cathedrals across England and Wales as well as to cathedrals around Ireland. This year the choir sang a Choral evensong in Westminster Abbey.
He came to St Bartholomews, September 1986, at 24 years of age, after some years as Assistant Organist in St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin. Steadily, Malcolm built up our choir in quality and in numbers that few would have ever thought possible. He was endowed with an equal measure of a very talented organist, a superb choirmaster/teacher and had a full understanding and obvious love of the churches liturgy.
Over twenty one years he instilled in hundreds of boy choristers a love of church music and the discipline required for it's performance that became part of their fuller education. Many parents would bear witness to the encouragement he will have given to some with a natural shyness or indeed with some minor behavioural problems.
In more recent years he embarked on the establishment of a girl's choir. This in itself was a very brave move in what had been musically male dominated from the churches foundation. Malcolm of course achieved this and the success was exemplified when last year on Ascension Thursday the Girls Choir sang the Mozart in D Mass while three days later the Boys Choir sang the Schubert in G Mass at the respective Eucharists.
St Bartholomews loss is of course a fortunate gain for St Fin Barres Cathedral in Cork . On the retirement of another fine church musician and gentleman , Colin Nicholls , Malcolm takes over from October 1st. An extensive and glowing appreciation of Colin Nicholls appeared in the Irishman's Diary in the 'Irish Times' some weeks ago.
We all in St Bartholomews thank Malcolm for his great achievements and countless kindnesses over the twenty-one years and wish him an equally fulfilling twenty-one years (and more) in St Fin Barres.
Sunday 23 September
St Bartholomew's Day
Pictured at the patronal festival Solemn Eucharist of St Bartholomew (Dublin) are (left to right) Michael Barry (Order of Malta), John Igoe, (Chancellor, Order of Malta), the Revd Dr Alan McCormack, Parish Priest of St Vedast alias Foster and and St Botolph without Bishopsgate, London, the Revd Michael Thompson, Frank McGoldrick (Treasurer, Order of Malta) and Jason McCann.
After a terrible Summer weatherwise, the sun shone to brighten up the leafy suburb of Ballsbridge. The annual Patronal Festival Mass was celebrated at the earlier time of 7:00pm.
Traditionally, St. Bart’s Day marks the return of the Church choir to the Stalls following a well-earned “summer” break, however, this year, probably because of the late arrival of the summer sunshine, the majority of our senior choristers and gentlemen were still on vacation. The Choir of some 5 boys and 8 Gentlemen led the worship with the Setting Missa Sancti Johannis de Deo ( or as it is commonly known “Little Organ Mass” ) by Haydn, and the soloist in the Benedictus, William Doyle excelled. The special preacher for the occasion was Fr. Alan McCormack, sometime Chaplain at Trinity College, Dublin, currently Vicar of St. Vedast alias Foster, London.
Following recent resignations and appointments, this was also the last “big” service for both our incumbent Michael Thompson, and our Director of Music, Malcolm Wisener, both of whom are leaving us for pastures new at the end of September. Malcolm has been appointed as Director of Music at St. Finbarre’s Cathedral in Cork, and we offer our best wishes to him as he takes his leave after some 22 years of loyal and faithful service to St. Bartholomew’s Choir. We are indebted to Peter Parshall who has agreed to act as interim Director of Music during the vacancy, we also thank our assistant organist Eoghan Ward for maintaining the Music so admirably for the Sundays in July, Eoghan has agreed to continue his role as assistant organist and to “see in” the new Director of Music.
The full pattern of services resumes on Sunday 2nd September, however it must be noted that following consultation with the Archbishop and Choir members on the Select Vestry it has been agreed to move the time of Choral Evensong back to 6:00pm for a trial period of nine months, this is to facilitate those who travel long distances to worship at St. Bartholomew’s and it is hoped that the earlier finishing time will appeal to parents and choristers and will encourage a better attendance at this service. Choir practices resume for the boys on Wednesday 5th and for the full choir on Friday 7th September.
Friday 24 August
St Bartholomew's Church Dublin
Organist and Director of Music
due to the appointment of Malcolm Wisener
as Organist of Cork Cathedral
Fully Choral Solemn Eucharist on each Sunday and Solemnity
The Director of Music will continue to recruit and train our celebrated choir of twenty two boys and twelve men;
further the role and scope of the girls choir; and help in the development of the adult chorale
which sings under the direction of the assistant organist in July and August.
Our rich and diverse musical tradition has, from 1867, included a fostering of Gregorian Chant
Recently rebuilt mechanical action three manual Gray and Davidson Organ
Stipend Euro 21,000 ( £14,000 ) inflation indexed, plus fees
Reviewed annually. Eight weeks annual leave
Safeguarding Trust - Garda Vetting / Enhanced CRB disclosure required
Closing Date 22nd August ( Interviews 12 September )
Letters of application with CV & details of two referees to
Father Michael Thompson email@example.com
or by post marked "Director of Music" c/o The Administrator,
St Bartholomew's Church, Clyde Road, Dublin 4, IRELAND
Prestigious Appointment for Malcolm Wisener
Our Director of Music, Malcolm Wisener has been appointed Organist and Master of the Choristers of Cork Cathedral. St Fin Barre's Cathedral is one of Ireland's finest and has a long standing choral and musical tradition. We are certain that Malcolm will enhance and ennoble the liturgical music making of the Cathedral. He will take up his new appointment at the end of September.
Malcolm has made a massive contribution to the life and work of St Bartholomew's. Plans are being made to mark his departure with an appropriate expression of our gratitude.
Sunday 8 July
Resignation of Father Michael Thompson
His Grace the Archbishop has accepted the resignation of the Reverend Michael Thompson as Incumbent of St Bartholomew's and Christ Church. He will cease duties at the end of September. Father Michael would like to thank all those who have helped him during his three years here and wishes the parishes every possible success in the future.
Sunday 1 July
Summer Suns are Glowing
The Summer months are here, and as the hymn above suggests, sunshine is supposedly somewhere to be found, but not here given the recent news of flooding in both Ireland and England. Our prayers must firstly go out to all the people affected by the recent flooding in Yorkshire, and we remember the families of all those who have lost their lives as the floodwaters continue to create difficulties in this region.
Back home in the Parish, the Choirs are now on their annual Summer break, and the music at the Solemn Eucharist for the month of July will be maintained by the "Elgin Chorale" a group of our own Choristers and friends under the direction of Eoghan Ward our assistant Organist. During the month of August, visiting choirs under the direction of both Peter Parshall and Kerry Houston will maintain the music until own own choir resume duties on St. Bartholomew's Day ( 24th August ), details of which will be posted on this site under the "Diary" listings in due course. The services of Choral Evensong on Sundays in July and August are suspended, and these will resume in September.
Every year at this time, parishoners travel either at home or abroad for holiday. Whilst on holiday, we encourage all to visit the local Churches at their holiday destination, and take part in the Sunday services.
Thursday 28 June
On Saturday 9th June at 6:00pm, there will be a special pre-dinner Organ Recital in St Bartholomew's Church featuring Malcolm Proud, international recitalist, and Director of Music at St. Canice's Cathedral, Kilkenny. Admission €10 (proceeds to the restoration fund).
This recital has the added significance as it will be the first recital to be given on the Gray and Davidson Organ since the addition of the Fanfare stops in the North Transept. The Organ was renovated by Trevor Crowe and Co. Organ Builders who are currently engaged in the restoration and re-building of the historic Bevington organ at St. Canice's Cathedral in Kilkenny.
Wednesday 30 May
The festivals of Rogation Sunday, Ascension Thursday, and Pentecost traditionally mark the end of the Easter season, and a rather busy schedule for the Choir.
On Rogation Sunday, we prayed for a good growing season, and for a plentiful harvest in the autumn. The Solemn Eucharist service was preceeded by the singing of the Litany in procession. On Ascension Day, the full choir led the singing with the setting by Darke in E, and the spectacular motet "God is gone up with a triumphant shout" by Finzi.
On Sunday 20th May the Girls Choir and Gentlemen joined forces with the Girls Choir of St. Finbarre's Cathedral Cork to sing two services in the Cathedral. This was the first time that our Girls had performed with another choir and the result was an outstanding success. A full report on this weekend appears in the June Newsletter, which will be available from Corpus Christi. The music at St Bartholomew's was maintained by the "Elgin Chorale" under the direction of our assistant organist Eoghan Ward.
As we approach the month of June we pray for all students who are sitting annual examinations, and we look forward to the Summer holidays. The festival of Corpus Christi is celebrated this year on Thursday 9th June at 7:00pm (note time), the full choir will sing the Missa Sancti Johannis de Deo or "Little Organ Mass" by Haydn. After the service, the Parish Barbecue takes place in the Church Grounds (Weather permitting).
Tuesday 29 May