Giving Thanks For and Through Music

Jerry Rich, Director of Music
Jerry Rich, Director of Music

By Jerry Rich

Giving Thanks for Music

“Music is, I believe, one of the church’s great missionary opportunities. In its transmission, it has meaning for the faithful, for the faithless, and for those who have lost their faith. It is a mission whose spirit can be expressed in the home, by the family singing Christmas carols, or in the most magnificent ecclesiastical structure, by a highly trained choir. It knows no social, intellectual, or sectarian barriers. It expresses our loftiest ideals, our deepest emotions. It is one of the gifts of God which reminds us that we are above the other creatures of earth, but lower than angels.” W. Benjamin Hutto

Giving Thanks through Music

Here are some musical expressions of thanks to contemplate in this season of gratitude:

Johann Sebastian Bach: Sinfonia from Cantata 29 (We Thank You, God)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Song of Thanksgiving from Quartet #15 in A Minor

Leonard Bernstein: Simple Song from Mass

William Billings: O Praise the Lord of Heaven

Aaron Copland: Appalachian Spring Suite (part 1)

Joseph Curiale: Awakening from Songs of the Earth

Attrib. George Frideric Handel: Thanks Be to Thee

Gustav Holst: Finale from St. Paul’s Suite

Charles Ives: Thanksgiving from Holidays Symphony

Felix Mendelssohn: A Mighty Fortress Is Our God from Symphony #5

Claudio Monteverdi: Gloria from Mass of Thanksgiving (1631)

Arr. Stephen Paulus: We Gather Together

Jay Ungar: Thanksgiving Hymn from Harvest Home Suite

Valerius, arr. Williams: Prayer of Thanksgiving

Antonio Vivaldi: Autumn from The Four Seasons

John Williams: Hymn to New England


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Trinity United Methodist Church is located in McLean, VA. Our weekly worship services are on Sundays at 8:30 and 10:30 a.m. and on Wednesdays at noon. Sunday School is at 9:30 a.m. for children and adults. Children up to 6th grade are also invited to Children's Education during the 10:30 service. Adult Bible Study also occurs on Mondays at 10 a.m. and Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. Please visit our website for more information.

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