Calgary Renaissance Singers & Players – Exultate! Rejoice!

Come and help us celebrate the light that shines in the darkness! Katie Partridge is a member of Luminous Voices and an early-music specialist. With this concert, she steps into the spotlight as a concert soloist, bringing to life the music of Hildegard von Bingen.and Monteverdi’s Laudate Dominum, perfect music for the beautiful sanctuary acoustic of St. Stephen’s Anglican Church. Accompaning by the brilliant Calgary organist Chellan Hoffman, and John van Leeuwen performing on Baroque oboe d’amore.

The Players, our core of early-music instrumentalists, will also be featured brightly in this concert. St. Stephen’s will ring with the sounds of recorders, shawms, harpsichord, bells, drums, and viol, enticing some Renaissance dancers to kick up their heels for a joyful moment or two

This Week: “Communities Of Care” [December 10th, 2017]”

Parish churches are microcosms of care. And mid-sized midtown congregations, like St. Stephen’s, are particularly well suited to this calling. Like villages scattered throughout the urban landscape, it is here that we become known, that we have a sense of belonging, that we learn to welcome into our hearts our neighbours, learning to love as we ourselves are loved.

This capacity of Christian congregations to become communities of care is especially critical when church members face hard times brought on by physical or mental illness, or by bereavement, or by financial disaster. It means no one has to face such challenges alone.

St. Paul wrote that, as Christians, we are all members of one body. When one member suffers, the whole body suffers; when one rejoices, the whole body rejoices. So as we get to know one another, and welcome each other into our hearts, we find quite naturally that we reach out to one another. We pray for each other, we check in with each other, we visit each other, whether in home or in hospital. We extend our best wishes by sending flowers, or providing casseroles.

The city can sometimes seem like one big anonymous machine, and social isolation is the result. But not at church. Look around you. These are your brothers and sisters. When they hurt, you hurt; when they laugh, you laugh. It is here that we learn how to love the world, by loving one another. This is God’s gift, and our greatest calling

Do You Hear What I Hear?: a night of hearing the Christmas story in a brand new way with good people and good music

If you’ve wondered what the Christmas story about baby Jesus is really about and if it has anything meaningful to say to us today, join local minister Nick Coates and local musician Jesse Peters for “Do You Hear What I Hear?: a night of hearing the Christmas story in a brand new way with good people and good music.”

Everyone is welcome, wanted and accepted to come out to this. Bring a food bank donation or pay what you can to help cover the costs.

INSTRUMENTAL SOCIETY OF CALGARY DUO SOLISTA

December 3, 2017, 3 P.M. Olga Kotova and Dmitry Nesterov have played together since the age of seventeen and call themselves “Duo Solista” to reflect their dedication to being both solo artists and life partners. Their wonderfully varied program includes Richard Strauss’ brilliant and fiendishly difficult Violin Sonata. Join us for this excellent seasonal concert. Tickets start at $20 and can be purchased at the door or by visiting www.instrementalsociety.ca

This Week: “Company Of Men” [December 3rd, 2017]”

Men are like icebergs. Not that they are cold and unfeeling (anyone can be like that); but they have a lot going on beneath the surface, of which they are largely unaware. So, like an iceberg, hiding over 90 per cent of its bulk in the icy depths, that weight can suddenly shift, upending the entire mass, creating devastating consequences for anyone close at hand.

Once a month, a group of men meets at St. Stephen’s as the “Company of Men”. They share stories of what life is giving them to work on—which may come from relationships, from dreams and preoccupations, or from their work lives—in order to bring into the light the darker movements from the depths.

A man shares his story, while the others listen silently. When he is done, each one affirms the speaker, reflecting back one thing they heard him say. Then those who want to, reference similar stories from their own lives, confirming that the story they just heard is not as uncommon as the speaker might have thought.

The effect of this simple process is “sanctuary”—a safe place to access what is going on beneath the surface. The men don’t tell each other what to do (the one rule is: “No Advice!”). But they listen in such a way that “normalizes” their work, reminding each one that they are not alone, that their struggles, however unique, do not make them weird or strange. In such a way, men are warming up.

The next gathering of the Company of Men is on Saturday, December 9, from 8:30 to 10 a.m., in the Canterbury Room. All men are welcome.