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A Very Special Occasion

Saturday, October 22nd was a highly significant day for one of my dearest friends, Jodi Nicholson Keith, who was accepted into the Lutheran Church of American (ELCA) as an ordained minister. She has accepted a call to serve the congregation of St. Peter Lutheran Church, in Trenton Ohio.

For this special occasion, I composed a new anthem, O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing, one of Jodi’s favorite hymns. The piece uses a theme and variations approach in presenting selected stanzas from this well-known hymn text by Charles Wesley. How many stanzas are there? Quite a few, as it turns out! I managed to limit myself to a representative selection, creating a setting for SATB choir and organ.

My wife Joan and I served Good Shepherd Lutheran back in the early 1980s, during our grad school days; this is where we first met Jodi. It was wonderful to return to this church and relive our former duties. I conducted the premiere, with Joan at the organ. Jodi managed to find about 40 singers who just happened to be in the neighborhood……


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