Beckenhorst

SATB, piano  Editors' Choice

Many will be the times that this anthem blesses and enriches a service of worship. This lovely new setting for SATB Choir and Piano is strong and resolute while at the same time tender and submissive. Use it often.

Composer’s Reflection: This anthem is dedicated to Ron and Sue Lutz, who have ministered at New Life Presbyterian Church (Dresher, PA) for over 30 years. Ron is approaching retirement, and this is my attempt at honoring him. The text, I think, acknowledges the challenges and blessings that any pastor and spouse would face over the years, and it also reflects the resolve necessary to be faithful in ministry. One of my favorite things about the music is the key change to B-flat major (mm. 40-52). This gets the singers into a higher range, setting up the climactic moment (m. 50), and underscores the meaning of the text. In D-flat major we sing, “O Jesus, I have promised…” and in B-flat major we sing, “O Jesus, you have promised…” Our resolution to follow Him is rooted in the covenant promise He has made with us (“Salvation comes from the Lord,” Jonah 2:9). My other favorite moment comes in mm. 58-61, when the choir sings a cappella to provide textural contrast. I love the chord on “grace” (m. 58), a first inversion chord with added 2nd, and use it often in my writing.

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