About Me

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Douglas, Alaska, United States
I have lived in Alaska since 1978, having come to Juneau as a Jesuit Volunteer. I fell in love with Alaska and now live on Douglas Island with my husband and two dogs.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Humility

I used to have a beautiful singing voice. I performed at the Alaska Folk Festival many times, with different bands, and as a solo act. Over the years I was in the chorus of several musical theatre productions, and have participated in many choral performances. I led the music at Mass for over twenty-five years at the Cathedral and at other parishes before I moved to Juneau.

I was proud of my voice, proud of my talent. I could hit the high notes and really belt out a song in my youth and up until a few years ago, thought that I would never lose my ability to sing.

But, then, it became more difficult to hit even moderately high pitches. My voice began to give out and I now find myself dropping an octave when singing in the congregation at Mass.

This week, I have been participating in a Gospel workshop (as an alto, not a soprano!) where the choir, led the the amazing Rev. Bobby Lewis,  learns several beautiful songs in preparation for a concert this weekend. Rev. Bobby held auditions for solos in the performance tonight. We sat and listened to many singers, some nervous, some self assured, sing a variety of songs, some well, some not so good, but all of them were applauded for trying. I decided to try. I sang the chorus of a song I must have sung at least 100 times: “Alleluia, Give The Glory”. I remember singing that song at a Diocesan Institute many years ago and blowing the roof off the place. Tonight, while it wasn’t exactly horrible, it wasn’t very good, either.

“Oh, well,” I thought, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.”

The last time I sang at a big Diocesan event was at our current Bishop’s ordination. Later, when I watched the video, and listened to my brief solo, I was horrified. I was off-key and strained and it sounded terrible. That’s when I decided that I would never lead the music at Mass again. Then, our regular guitarist/cantor left for awhile to go to school and I was needed to fill in at Mass. I reluctantly agreed, crossing my fingers.  It was really hard. I couldn’t sing well enough to lead, and sometimes was the only cantor. I was ashamed and embarrassed that my voice was so bad.

But our song leader came back and I was again off the hook. Breathing a huge sigh of relief, I went back to being a part of the congregation.

Now, I find myself needing to fill in again during Lent. Again, I am finding myself reluctant to do so, knowing that my voice is not good. However, I have decided to turn this into a Lenten observance. I’m going to try to be prayerful about choosing the music and leading the assembly during Lent.

Because, I have discovered that it can be just as distracting to the assembly to be too good a singer as it can be to be too bad of one.

Because all those years of singing so beautifully gave me a bit of a big head.

Because it’s not supposed to be about me.

It never was.


3 comments:

  1. شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر

    شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر شركة المثالية هي افضل شركة تنظيف بالخبر يمكنكم التواصل معها للحصول علي افضل خدمات تنظيف المنازل والشقق والفلل والبيوت والمجالس والكنب والسجاد والموكيت والمفروشات بجودة عالية ومواصفات قياسية حيث تعد شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر اولي الشركات التي التي تخصصت في مجالل التنظيف بالخبر ولديها خبرة كبيرة وعمالة ماهرة وادوات تنظيف حديثة وطاقم عمالة مدرب علي اعلي مستوى فلا تترددوا في الاتصال بشركة المثالية للتنظيف بالخبر وسوف تحصلون علي افضل الخدمات المنزلية من نظافة ومكافحة حشرات بارخص الاسعار

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