St. John's offers opportunities to serve through music for children, youth and adults in both the Historic Church traditional setting and the All Saints Hall contemporary worship. The well known quote from St. Augustine, “They who sing, pray twice,” hangs on a wall in St. John's Historic Church choir rehearsal room. This wonderful statement typifies and captures the essence of church music down through the ages and right to the present time. One of the unique aspects of sacred music is its inherent inclusiveness. As members of the congregation, you all become ministers of music each time you raise your voices in the corporate singing of hymns and service music.
For those of you who wish to experience even greater involvement, we invite you to join one of our choirs:
THE ADULT CHOIR provides music in the Historic Church for 9:00 a.m. worship (first, second & fifth Sundays of each month) and 11:15 a.m. worship (third and fourth Sundays). “They who sing, pray twice,” hangs on a wall in St. John's Historic Church choir rehearsal room. This wonderful statement typifies and captures the essence of church music down through the ages and right to the present time.Open to adults and high school students. Rehearsals: Tuesday, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Director of Music/Organist: Nancy Stavely, 410-461-7793.
ALL SAINTS HALL SINGERS AND BAND provide music for the 9:00 a.m. contemporary worship in All Saints Hall. Featuring ensemble singers accompanied by guitars, flute, and light percussion, the group's folk-style renditions of both traditional and modern Christian favorites provide the perfect backdrop for the more relaxed worship experience of the contemporary service. The St. John's Singers also provide musical accompaniment for the annual Memorial Day parish retreat at Shrine Mont, as well as for special events throughout the year. Rehearsals: Sunday mornings, 8:00 a.m. Director: Eric Tich
THE YOUTH CHOIR is open to Grades 2-8. Do you like to sing? Would you like to be an important part of the worship service? Do you like to laugh? Do you have a sweet tooth? Are you in school? If you say “YES” to these questions, the choir and Ms. Lichtenberger would love to have you join us in Youth Choir every Thursday evening from 6:30-7:30 p.m. We sing the 4th Sunday of most months as well as at the ONE Worship Service, Christmas Eve, Palm Sunday, and Easter. Director, Youth Choir, Diane Lichtenberger,410-465-1151 or cell: 410-227-3245
THE INTER-GENERATIONAL INSTRUMENTAL ENSEMBLE is open to adults, high school and middle school students with four years of experience playing brass, woodwind, strings, or percussion instruments. The ensemble provides music at 9:00 a.m. in the Historic Church on the third Sunday of each month as well as at the ONE Worship Service, Christmas Eve, Palm Sunday, and Easter. Rehearsals: Thursday evening prior to the third Sunday. Contact: Susan Fedors, 410-440-1978.
ST. JOHN'S HANDBELL CHOIR carries on the medieval Christian tradition of handbell ringing. The choir rings in the Historic Church for 9:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. worship on the second Sunday of each month. Open to adults and high school students. Rehearsals: Tuesday, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Contact: Nancy Stavely
The Howard County concert Orchestra (HCCO) was formed in 2008 and has presented concerts at St. John's for the past 10 seasons. Drawing on the professional musical talent of our region, this premiere chamber orchestra offers a repertoire of classic composers in various settings. The 2018-2019 season involves Winter and Spring concerts at St. John's.
No discussion of music at St. John’s would be complete without a mention of “the king of instruments,” our pipe organ, and the person who brings it to life each Sunday, organist Nancy Stavely.
Our organ was designed and built by the M.P. Moeller company of Hagerstown, Maryland and was dedicated on April 28, 1985. One hundred seventy-eight (178) families generously contributed money for this fine endeavor. Opus 11657, as the organ is identified, has four divisions: Great, Swell, Positiv, and Pedal, with a total of 2,425 pipes. The three keyboard draw knob style console was the first computerized console produced by Moeller and became the prototype for many other instruments.
Nancy Stavely has been Organist and Music Director at St. John’s for over twenty years. Nancy’s masterful playing, coupled with a talented group of singers, ringers, and ensembles, adds a special beauty to our worship at St. John’s. Nancy will be retiring from St. John's in 2019.