A few weeks ago I resigned as organist at the village church.
A sign of the times as this meld of Anglican and United churches fades into the shadows of the free wheeling, Sunday morning concert music that accompanies the worship service of the Pentecostal type of church, and attracts young families to a more casual holiness.
The organ is passe, - the piano much more lively and the guitar and other instruments provide more contemporary, and sometimes very beautiful music.
For two Sundays now we have sung a Capella, under the leadership of the minister's true, pure. lyrical voice and it has been amazingly satisfactory.
We are a very small congregation, - middle aged, elderly, and some even ancient. Occasionally we have visiting children, but for two years, as some small ones moved and others grew older, we have had no children attending church in the parish. Indeed, the grandchildren of our parishioners join with enthusiasm the activities and classes in the various contemporary social churches, - they play piano or guitar. or other instruments, and mostly they make beautiful music.
So now when I sit to play I am practicing The Peacherine Rag and the Heliotrope Bouquet, and trying to regain my dexterity for the Beethoven Sonatas and the Chopin that once slid off my fingers.
I did notice, as we sang 'This is the Day' a Capella, that the congregation maintained the rhythm and beat with which I have always played it, so perhaps those years at the organ were not all in vain.
It is a sad time for traditionalists.....
The parish board presented me with a thank-you gift certificate, and this is what I bought, to hang on the wall beside the piano.