Organists don’t retire — they just keep substituting! Even before the tragic event of her husband’s death, Margaret Lloyd had contracted me to play the 7 am service at Central Union Church some time ago since she was still going to be on the mainland. This is the same service that two of my students, Joey Fala and Jordan McCreary, have played as Organ Scholars. The organ was originally by Holtkamp but has been reworked by Terrence P. Schoenstein.
Since my jet lag has completely disrupted my body clock, I thought that getting up for the 7 am service would be a piece of cake and it was (I woke up at 3:30 am, so I was fine.)
The first thing organists have to figure out is how to turn the organ on! After a few minutes of groping around, I finally figured that I had to turn this key in order to get the thing on.
I was a little surprised when I found this sign on the Atherton Chapel organ:
Margaret had already given me the hymns, and told me there would be a patriotic emphasis since it’s the Fourth of July weekend. Honestly, I told her I didn’t think that I’ve ever played patriotic music in a church service before (!) but I found preludes on America, Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory of the Lord, and My Country ‘Tis of Thee. The two hymns were God of our Fathers and America.
As part of the service, they sang the Gloria Patri, and I do believe that the last time I played this was at the Van Nuys United Methodist Church when I was in college! (That was eons ago!) This being the first Sunday of the month, communion was served, and I was so surprised that by 7:45 a.m., I was back in my car headed for home.
Wow, how efficient!