The first Sunday in July is kept at Rotherhithe as the Feast of Dedication. The present building was consecrated in 1715, and it is this event that we celebrate every July. It also happens to be Mahler's 153rd birthday (Happy Birthday, Gustav!), so I'm playing his gorgeous Adagietto from the Fifth Symphony before the service.
The Sauvrezis and Prestat pieces for 14 July are what I should have played last month. See last month's blog for notes.
Entertaining guests is the theme of the readings on 21 July – Sarah having to cook for three angels (angel cake?!), and Martha for Jesus. The words of the hymn 'Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme' exhort us all to be ready for the arrival of the Bridegroom. To top and tail the service, I play two great chorale preludes on it by Bach and Karg-Elert.
The Gospel for the last Sunday of the month sees Jesus teaching his disciples the familiar words of the Lord's Prayer. Luther's hymn 'Vater unser in Himmelreich' forms the basis for the Sweelinck and Mendelssohn pieces, and the anthem is a setting of the Lord's Prayer which my father, Jack Phillips, wrote when he was a school teacher from the 1950s to the 1970s – you could say it's My Father's 'Our Father'! This will be the first time it has been sung at Rotherhithe. You can find a picture of him on the Teaching page.