Today we sit in the midst of a distressing “moment” in our country’s history (only the fourth incidence of a presidential impeachment inquiry) while also remembering the tragic event of the presidential assassination in 1963. Today is also the feast of St. Cecilia, patron of musicians. Many people would say I am stretching a bit to throw St. Cecilia into that mix but I would beg to differ.
At our “holy hour” last week from the Sophia Center, we celebrated those who step up to serve in difficult times like natural disasters or mass shootings, those whose lives are dedicated to services like the military or as first responders and people who quietly “do good” each day. The most moving moment for me and for many others was at the invitation to stand and sing all four verses of America the Beautiful with our voices being the only musical instrumentation. It was a stirring – one could easily say “emotional” – event that could never have been as meaningful as a spoken recitation of the lyrics would have been. It was a reminder both of the beauty and history of our country and the strength of character of those who have made the country great.
We need music. We need concerts and “singalongs” and hymns in religious services both joyful and those filled with sorrow. Music helps us to express emotions that are deeper than words. Today might be a good day to find some music in our personal “favorites” file and allow ourselves the emotions of remembrance, sadness or despair, pleading for peace, hope for resolution or seeking God’s grace to persevere. See what you can find and listen with your heart. Feel better and give thanks.