Wednesday, October 12, 2011

November Feasts

By Larry Beane

It is nearly November, the time of year when folks in Chicago enjoy falling leaves and the folks in New Orleans enjoy the departure of hurricane season!  The Church begins November with All Saints Day and concludes the month with the Feast of St. Andrew the Apostle.  In November, we end the previous church year with the last weeks of the year reminding us of the End of the Age, and with the beginning of the church year again calling to mind the beginning of the Last Days through the mystery of our Lord's incarnation.  For Americans, November is also a time of thanksgiving - which in ecclesiastical terms, makes us think of the Eucharistic Feast.

November is indeed a special time of the Church's calendar.

A magnificent choir known as the Schola Cantorum of St. Peter the Apostle (formerly the Schola Cantorum of St. Peter's in the Loop) has given the Church a wonderful musical gift for this sacred time of transition in  the her calendar.

This album, Music for the November Feasts, is one of my favorite musical albums of all time - in any category.  This is definitely a "desert island" CD.  It is an ecumenical collection of sacred music covering centuries in a diverse mix of ecclesiastical musical styles: hymn and chant, English and Latin, old and new, a choir of men and women singing both a capella and with musical accompaniment.

I cannot recommend it enough!

Here is the Amazon link to download the album ($8.99) or any of its twenty-two tracks ($.99/each).  Lutherans will especially enjoy seeing many favorites from their hymnals: such as By All Your Saints in Warfare (LSB 517, 518), Jerusalem My Happy Home (LSB 673), In the Midst of Earthly Life (LSB 755), Come Ye Thankful People, Come (LSB 892), Hail to the Lord's Anointed (LSB 398), Crown Him With Many Crowns (LSB 525), and the sainted professor Rev. Dr. Martin Franzmann's masterpiece O Kingly Love, which was not included in Lutheran Service Book, but was in Lutheran Worship (LW 346).  Also, though not technically a Lutheran hymn, the great Anglican composer and chorister Dr. Healy Willan's majestic setting of the Te Deum Laudamus as sung in many Lutheran schools and churches - including the Kramer Chapel of Concordia Theological Seminary (Fort Wayne) - is part of this wonderful collection!

And if you appreciate Gregorian Chant and Latin, there are some haunting and inspiring tracks that proclaim the catholic timelessness and comforting transcendence of the Church of Jesus Christ and His Word.

And here is more from the Schola Cantorum of St. Peter's in the Loop (known today as the Schola Cantorum of St. Peter the Apostle).

As a postscript, I was honored to have the Schola's conductor, J. Michael Thompson, drop by and leave a kind comment on an old FH posting about Dr. Franzmann.  Mr. Thompson, blessings on your work in the Lord's kingdom!  You have a gift that is also a treasure!


  1. Yeah! Jim is an old friend. We spent some years together at 801.

  2. If you open a free Rhapsody account, you may listen to or download nine of their albums, including the aforementioned. The free account lets you listen to 25 tracks/month free. Just search for Schola Cantorum after you install the player. FWI

  3. I did a little Googling and found that you can obtain the CD for $4.24. There are some other sale items at Liturgical Press as well. Go to: Got some nice CDs of Eastern (hyper)European Carols also.

  4. A magnificent CD for this time of the year!

    Listening to the choral selections on this recording, followed by the CDs of Anglican Advent Processionals and other Advent hymnody and anthems is pure joy for November and December.

  5. had been sung in Kramer Chapel. I think they threw all of those away. We certainly have never sung it while I've been a student

  6. Sounds wonderful, although I admit to having just a little difficulty classifying Thanksgiving as a "Feast Day."


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