The music ministry at St. Francis-in-the-Fields is an integral part of the worship service. The choir sings at the 10 am service, and is always looking for new members to join. Choir rehearsals are 7:00pm - 8:30 pm on Thursdays and 9:15 am on Sundays. The choir sings on a September - June schedule.
To provide you with even more great reasons to join the choir, I am sharing a list of reasons to join a choir first published by the CBC (Canada's public broadcasting channel).
1. You get to sing great music.
And at St. Francis-in-the-Fields, I do my absolute best to sing a wide variety of music such as Renaissance Motets, Early-American Shaker Hymns, Russian Orthodox Hymns, and contemporary compositions from the last few years.
2. It's an excellent stress reliever
Not only do we have fun at rehearsals, the actual act of singing with others has been shown to reduce stress in studies. The combination of focused attention, breathing deeply, and listening to others helps you forget about the worries of the day, even if just for a little bit.
3. You meet new people
And what amazing people! If you are new to St. Francis-in-the-Fields, there could be no greater group of people to know as we have a choir full of loving, caring, spiritual, and giving human beings. It took me no time at all to feel part of the St. Francis-in-the-Fields family when I first came to the parish and it was because of these people.
4. You learn to listen
In choir we listen to many things: our own voice, our section, the piano, the organ, the notes in the chord, and others. When you join the choir you learn to appreciate the music you listen to every day in a new and deep way.
5. It's a workout for your brain
Singing in choir requires the use of reading skills, memory, physical coordination, listening, and keeping rhythm. Music learning has been shown in many studies to increase the interconnectivity of your brain, allowing the more process-oriented parts of your brain to work in better coordination with the emotional-oriented parts of your brain. And this growth happens at any age with any level of music-learning. Think of rehearsal as gym time for your brain.
6. It's an exercise in teamwork
Singing in a choir takes the fear out of singing on your own. When singing as a group, you have the collective voices of the whole choir to support you and make you feel like you can sing beautifully (which you can).
7. You don't have to buy any equipment.
All you need for practice is your larynx! The good people of St. Francis-in-the-Fields support the choir with the funds needed to provide you with a folder and all of the music we need for the entire year. I even have a box of pencils ready to go if you ever need one of those as well!
8. You'll learn a lot of choir jokes (courtesy of the bass section).
9. It's uplifting
Whether preparing music for the weekly anthem, special music Sundays, or even our grandest of holidays, choir is a great time to gather together with your closest friends and to join your voices as one for the glory of God.