“Miserere Mei, Deus” – Have mercy upon me, O God, after thy great goodness – the first line of the setting of Psalm 51 by Josquin dez Pres which the choir will be recording this afternoon. My friend is dying – what can I do for him? He is now doing his work with Jesus on going to the place prepared for him in heaven. I can be part of that journey by praising God with joy for his goodness and mercy to my friend.
My only previous experience as an extended choir member was singing Haydn’s Creation with the Cape Cod Symphony several years ago. This year I was invited to join the choir for a recording of Miserere Mei, Deus (Psalm 51) by Josquin de Pres (French composer 500 years ago). This piece is a five-voice version of the psalm we chant every Friday at Lauds, so the Latin words are very familiar. For the recording the challenge is to sing together, in time, in tune, with the same tone, while reflecting the full meaning of the words. Only by the grace of God, much help, and a great deal of work can I hope to reach this goal. The photo shows the score open to the most difficult bass line I am to sing. I now have a much richer understanding of what it means to sing to the Glory of God!