March 31, 2021
On behalf of the pastors, wardens and parishioners, past and present, thank you for your outstanding service at the Ascension of Our Lord Parish these last eighteen years.
As much as we deeply regret to see you go, we are all very happy for you and Cheryl, and the life you are building together as a married couple. We wish you much health and happiness in the days, months and years ahead, and hope you will find a good excuse to come to Montreal now and again.
But my, how different things will be for us at Ascension, who adore your music and musicality. We remember vividly your interview for the position back in 2003. You impressed us with your interview, but even more so when you played the organ for us. Our decision to hire you was immediate and unanimous!
Then came that job offer from Toledo, Ohio in 2011. Our hearts sank at the thought of your leaving Ascension, but we understood and supported fully your desire to move forward. Due to unforeseen circumstances, you were unable to go to the U.S., and ended up staying with us ten more years – how fortunate we have been.
The choir will miss your patience and rigour in striving for excellence, whether in preparing for the weekly Sunday Masses, the very special liturgies of the Christmas and Easter seasons, and the concerts performed annually since 2011. Indeed, you succeeded in making our choir sound magnificent.
We all will miss your brilliance at the organ. We’ll always remember your wonderful accompaniments of the choir in Franck’s Psaume 150
and Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus, entre autres,
and of course, the many inspiring and uplifting organ solos you performed for us, some of which not only lifted our spirits but seemed to lift the roof of the church itself (Widor’s Toccata)!
Finally, one of the most important contributions you have made to our parish, and to Montreal, has been your endless and perseverant effort to make us all appreciate and fully understand what a special instrument we have in our Casavant Opus 1344. You brought the instrument to life thanks to your incredible talent. You endeared us to it and convinced us that it was worthy of a major restoration. All of this helped immeasurably to raise a significant amount for the organ restoration project via the Capital Campaign, and we are indebted to you as well for all the work you have done in preparing our proposals for funding submitted to the Comité des Orgues of the Conseil du Patrimoine Réligieux du Québec these last three years.
We sincerely hope you will be able to come back some weekend in the future once the restoration is complete to sit and play at this unique and exceptional instrument.