Decisions, Decisions

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It was the same tough decison as last time, but we were graced with a candidate that overwhelmed us both with his talent, but also with his gentle presence. He has a Masters Degree in Organ, 25 years of music ministry experience, tremendous experience with Children's choirs, excellent recomendations from past co-workers, and he made our organ sound like I always knew it could sound. I remember after mass last Thursday...he came for Mass, played for the 9:00am Mass and stayed for several hours after for an interview. The opening hymn that morning was simply thrilling. He also has a relationship with my favorite convent, the Sister of the Most Precious Blood in O'Fallon, MO.

So it was a toss up between Matthew or Sam. Was it going to be Potential or Experience? This time we went with experience.

Our New Organist, Director of Music Ministry, Sam Dorlaque, begins at St. Edward Catholic Church on June 1st.


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Congratulations. It sounds like you and Sam will make a great team. You are both in my prayers.

Congratulations! It must have been nice to have a choice between wonderful and fantastic. I admire your dedication to this search. There are probably many under appreciated musicians sitting in pews quietly listening to under qualified musicians that "have always been there." Somehow, I think God keeps track of these inequities and makes them up to us in other ways :)


Congratulations on hiring someone more like you and not like your parish community. Now you can sing while Sam plays the organ.

Mary -- the many under-appreciated musicians sitting in the pews quietly listening to underqualified musicians that "have always been there" should be SINGING, participating in the liturgy, NOT listening!

If you are a church musician that needs to be appreciated, you should practice your talent somewhere outside of Liturgy. All ministers SERVE God and His people and don't need appreciation. Good ministers are always appreciated.

Congratulations on your fruitful search, Father.

4:16, assuming you are not merely trolling, I imagine you have a chip on your shoulder
about some real or perceived slight, and I
will keep you in my prayers.
A Chip on a Shoulder almost invariably causes more
damage to the person who bears it than to his
intended targets.
And a Chip has none of the salutary effect of
the seemingly weightier burden of a Cross.

In any case, it is obvious that you have no acquaintance whatever with the man you seem
intent on attacking, and your doing so on his
blog is the equivalent of being rude to
someone in his own house.
I ask you to reconsider your actions and
your words.

Good job, Fr. Jeff! Although we've only worked with Sam for a few days, I think I'm safe in speaking for the whole Faith Formation team in saying that we are happy with your choice. And thanks for consdering our input in your decision. I think we all make a great team...and Sam is going to enhance that even further. If only he liked Green Eggs and Ham. (Sorry, Sam!)

Geri -- I do, in fact, have an aquaintance with the man who hosts this blog. I believe he has both strengths and weaknesses, as all of us do. His tact in pastoral ministry needs some improvement. St. Edward's has made a 180 degree turn when Fr. Keyes became pastor, which may be a good thing. Perhaps he should educate his parish on the changes he is implementing, especially with the music. In a way, he has come into our "home" --our parish-- and attacked us with his own view and preference on Liturgy. That can also be perceived as a rude attack on the community. I, like many others, will no longer call St. Edward Catholic Church our home.

Perhaps his "parish" should listen when he provides the requested education. Also, please don't speak for the parish at large; you do not represent the parish perspective. And lastly, could you please enumerate the 180 degree changes that Fr. Keyes has made? I'll list a few: beautiful candles, gorgeous altar "dressings", an actual crucifix (something that is required, but we were lacking), a decent baptismal font worthy of the sacrament, an adult faith formation program that makes sense....okay, I'll stop; your turn. And one last thing: the music. If we had had an EFFECTIVE Director of Music Ministry we would not be having the problems that we are now with people like you. You do not know the whole story, my friend, and I doubt that you ever will because you would not listen even if someone had the patience to tell it to you. If St. Edward is no longer your home, then I'm sad for you and I wish you well on your travels. Please take your dissention with you as you go. Oh, okay, one more thing...the majority of the "changes" are related to the implementation of the GIRM as mandated by the Bishop. Changes, I might add, that were required years ago, but which were too much trouble for Fr. Jeff's predecessors to implement. So, take that!

By the way, the new GIRM to be implemented in this Diocese was just released to the parishes no more than 2 months ago. Only 3 to 4 years ago, the Latin version had been given to the US Bishops Council for translation and inculturation. There was no trouble at all for his predecessors because they had nothing to implement since the Committee on Liturgy for the US were not done with their work.

As for the "ineffective" Director of Music, who seemed to have a lot of potential, yet young and inexperienced, when hired, Fr. Keyes should have nurtured his leadership and talent instead of letting him hang dry.

The GIRM was to be implemented in EVERY diocese in the United States on the First Sunday of Advent in 2003, not 2 months ago. No diocese is different in that effect.
I wouldn't be surprised if he's asked his former organist more than once (probably several times) for changes in his work, and simply never got it. Which in that case, I don't blame Fr. Keyes one bit for making a move.



The former bishop and the current bishop of the Oakland Diocese asked the full implememation of the new GIRM be delayed so the a consistant program of formation could be developed bith for the priests and the people. The new GIRM is to be implemented by Advent 2005.

I realize our former music director is a reader of this blog so I suspect he may be one of the anonymous posters. He has demonstrated in the past month how he simply does not "get it" when it comes to music ministry in this parish. This is a very large parish with much to do, but ask any child or their parent in the school and they are very disappointed when it came to the children's choir this year.

The purpose of this blog is not for people to debate whether or not I have been a good pastor. I know that some members of the choir are not happy because they do get to do their favorite songs anymore, but we will slowly but surely build a music ministry that is catholic and does the best of ancient and contemporary music for the Liturgy. When it come to such things I have to obey the will of the church and not simply my own wishes or even the wishes of the people. We are all supposed to be changed by our immersion in the paschal mystery.

It has been possible for people to leave anonymous posts here in the past, but that is changing. Until further notice you must leave behind some form of email address and name.

"As for the "ineffective" Director of Music, who seemed to have a lot of potential, yet young and inexperienced, when hired, Fr. Keyes should have nurtured his leadership and talent instead of letting him hang dry."

This is an amazingly ignorant perspective. "Hang dry?" We let him hang dry?!!!!

I believe the opposite may be true. Just ask any child in the children's choir. Oh, that's right, we did not have a children's choir this year.

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This page contains a single entry by Fr. Jeffrey Keyes, C.PP.S. published on May 25, 2005 6:20 PM.

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