By Leigh Anne Naas, Decani Alto

with help from Grace, Decani Chorister, and Clara, Cantoris Chorister

Our Friday Evensong was sung mostly a capella, aligning with the tradition of more subdued services in honor of Good Friday. After having our organist, Nara Lee, play processionals so beautifully all week, the silent procession of choir and clergy was more stark and took on a deeper meaning. After the service, we all separated into smaller groups for dinner, and I ended up having an impromptu picnic with two choristers and one companion parent.

I asked the choristers about their first pilgrimage experience, and they enthusiastically agreed they are already hoping to go on a future trip. One chorister said how much she has enjoyed getting to know the adults in the choir, exclaiming, “A week ago, I didn’t even know Erica, and now we have a secret handshake!” Then they launched into an impromptu dance as they hummed the tune of the Magnificat by Herbert Sumsion, which we sang earlier this week. To be fair, it does have a very dance-like tune.

They offered to write their own reflection for our blog, so here is their view in their own words:

We have been choristers for almost 5 years and we have enjoyed it. This trip has impacted us as choristers in many ways, such as meeting and learning about the adults in the choir, splitting us into Dec and Can (two sections of the choir), and traveling with our church community. It has also improved our singing. 

Our favorite parts of this pilgrimage have been touring and learning about the castles and cathedrals and going to places we have never been to, like Stonehenge and Bath. We would love to come back on a choir pilgrimage because we can sing beautiful pieces and see beautiful sights. Some of our favorite pieces are Come Thou Holy Paraclete, I Will Lift Up Mine Eyes, and When Rooks Fly Homeward. We are so excited to do it again in a few years.