For several years the St. Mungo Singers have sung a Requiem Mass for St Agnes’ parish in Lambhill, and they have supported the Requiems of most of the priests who have died in the Archdiocese for the past twenty and more years. This year, the choir committee decided that we should have our own Requiem Mass for deceased members, to which relatives and friends of the deceased should be invited. The choir is now in its 38th year and inevitably there have been a number of deaths from John Ballantine in the 1970s to Jimmy Fitzsimmons at the end of 2008.
‘Music of ‘May the souls’ (c) Noel S Donnelly.
The Mass was celebrated in St. Leo the Great Church on Friday 13 March.
It was not a mournful occasion but rather one where the participants took time out to pray with affection for those who have died, with thankfulness for the part they played in their families and in the life and work of the choir and its members, and to take pleasure in the memories.
The concelebrants were Mgr. Gerry Fitzpatrick, the Director of the St. Mungo Singers, and Fr. Noel Colford, who has been linked to the choir over many years and is considered an honorary member. Our life-President, John Limond, was able to be present; the choir was led for the Mass by David Harris and by Jane McKenna, our organist .
During the Mass, as the names of the deceased were read out, four candles (one for each section) were brought to the sanctuary in a simple but moving tribute.
The music for the Mass ranged from the plainsong Introit ‘Requiem Aeternam’ to Noel Donnelly’s setting of “How Blest are Those Who have Died in the Lord,”’May the souls of the faithful’ and the Communion Antiphon ‘Come to me,’ to the beautiful and classic hymn ‘O love that will not let me go,’ Mgr. Gerry’s setting of James Quinn’s ‘Remember those, O Lord, who in your peace have died,’ the ICEL Introit for Mass for the Dead and the sung Eucharistic Prayer. Appropriately the recessional was “Thine be the Glory.”
Everyone then retired to the church hall where the choir’s Social Committee had laid on refreshments, and there was the opportunity for reminiscing and catching up on news.