As we get into September some things that were "on hold" during the summer months begin anew. Two of these involve returning to practice schedules and this week the handbell choir and the schola begin their 2008-2009 seasons--beginning with practices.
The handbell choir has 10 members, practices every Tuesday evening and "performs" with special pieces at Christmas and Easter, but can also be heard many Sundays playing the parts of the Mass and, on some Sundays and special occasions, a general piece.
Playing handbells generates great interest from the audience. The bells have such a unique sound and it looks like "fun" to play them. And it is.
Here is a link to a professional and well-known handbell group. Enjoy!
The schola is a large group of sisters (25-30) who sing for special occasions, too. Most of the songs and hymns we sing have three parts, but just recently, at Sister Ellen Porter's funeral, we sang one of our 4-part hymns and it was truly beautiful.
The schola doesn't "appear" quite as often as the handbells, but when it does, it's a beautiful addition to our liturgies, too.
Nearly 10 years ago a small sub-group of the schola recorded the CD Te Deum. It sold over 2,000 copies as a CD and audio tape. Maybe we can finagle around and see if another CD could be in the offing!
Lake Erie--Photo Elia Lee, OSB