Grace Cathedral

Grace Cathedral

Article | January 13, 2023

Congregation Update: I Will Sing A New Song

Blog|The Rev. Canon Dr. Greg Kimura, Ph. D.

I will sing a new song. (Ps 40)

The Psalmist this Sunday speaks of patience in the Lord being rewarded. God lifts the lowly up “out of the mire and clay,” sets “feet on rock,” and makes “footsteps firm.” The response to this delivery? A new song of praise out of the mouths of the delivered.

So much of our worship, our giving thanks, is in the form of song. We sing our praises to God. If, in the beginning was the Word, then the second moment was to sing the word. God lifts us — and the gift of music likewise raises our spirits.

I was reminded of that Thursday, when four CSB choristers were “invested” with their albs. I had a front-row seat and could see their joy in this rite of passage and the pride of their parents. What a wonderful moment, and what a gift of the song they share with us all!

We are so fortunate at Grace Cathedral to have the traditional choirs, a new mixed-voice choir, contemporary music at the Vine, and the voices of the congregation singing together. We experience the wonderful organ, piano, and other instruments, so lovingly played by the music department. It reminds us of the Psalmist’s eternal truth: the only appropriate response to blessings is to give thanks, in its highest form, by song. 

We have many things happening at Grace on any given week. This week is no exception. At 10:30 am, between the services, we will experience a new type of singing for us: Bobby McFerrin’s Circlesongs. This will be the first of the new year, and you are warmly invited to participate. (Also, a big congratulations to Bobby, who will receive a Grammy 2023 Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award in February– we all celebrate with you on this rare and richly deserved honor!)

At 1 pm, our youth group and other youth from the Bay Area will participate in a teach-in and art workshop about ending slavery for good. Grace Cathedral is part of a broad national coalition calling for an end to the “exception clause” in the 13th Amendment that allows involuntary servitude, or forced labor, to continue in prisons. This teach-in will be led by gifted artists and facilitators Akeil Robertson-Jowers and Phoebe Bachman of Mural Arts Philadelphia, the nation’s largest public art organization. Akeil and Phoebe are facilitating teach-ins across the country to raise awareness about ending the exception in the 13th Amendment. Youth will create a piece of art in response to what they learn that will be on permanent display at the cathedral. 

At 3 pm, join us for a special Interfaith Service to celebrate the life and legacy of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.. Also, during the MLK, Jr. Holiday on Monday, we will be playing his inspiring 1965 sermon at Grace Cathedral on a loop; come and visit us! 

Final call for the final Grace Cathedral pilgrimage led by the Rev. Canon Mark Stanger. For two decades, our congregation members and others have followed the star of wonder to experience Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Nazareth, and other places from the life of Jesus. We travel together for a transformative journey that includes Pentecost in Jerusalem! 2023 Holy Land Pilgrimage. Learn more about the spiritual beauty of bible land pilgrimage.

Last but not least, please mark your calendars for the annual congregational meeting on January 29.

We look forward to seeing you Sunday, in person or virtually, and singing in joy together!

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