Prelude: Con moto maestoso from Sonata III, Felix Mendelssohn
Introit: O Taste and See, Ralph Vaughn Williams - The SJD Chorale
Anthem at the Offertory: O How Amiable, Ralph Vaughn Williams - The SJD Chorale
Anthem at the Ministration: There's a Wideness in God's Mercy, Calvin Hampton - The SJD Chorale
Postlude: Toccata from Suite Gothique, Léon Boellmann
In the nearly sixty years since his death, Ralph Vaughan Williams has come to be regarded as one of the finest British composers of the 20th century. He composed a particularly wide-ranging catalogue of works, including choral works, symphonies, concerti, and opera. His searching and visionary imagination, combined with flexibility in writing for all levels of music-making, has meant that his music is as popular today as it ever has been.
Today, we hear two of his most widely sung works. Our worship begins with his short motet “O taste and see how gracious the Lord is” with the text from Psalm 34. “O how amiable,” sung at the Offertory, is one of his most popular and cherished anthems. Written in 1934, it combines texts from Psalm 84 and 90 and concludes with the great hymn tune St. Anne, “O God, our help in ages past.”