Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Southern California Regional Singing

Los Angeles, California

May 16, 1998

The sixth annual Southern California Regional Sacred Harp Singing met on Saturday before the third Sunday in May at Holy Nativity Episcopal Church in Los Angeles, California. The class was called to order by Jerry Schreiber leading song on page 52t. Carri Patterson Grindon led the opening prayer. Gerry Hoffman, the chairman of last year’s singing, now resides on the East Coast and was unable to attend. Leaders: Laura Russell 30t, 181; Ron Huss 125, 470; Natalie Hall 203, 200.

Jerry Schreiber called a business meeting for the purpose of electing officers. Officers elected or appointed were: Chairman—Jerry Schreiber; Vice Chairman—Rick Russell; Secretary—Susan Turpin; Treasurer—Mike Laube; Chaplain—Steven O’Leary; Arranging Committee—Carla Smith and Carolyn Deacy; Resolutions Committee—Al Grindon and Midge Harder; Memorial Lesson—Steven O’Leary. Leaders: Tom Ostwald 504, 269; Jon Rand 111b, 124; Susan Turpin 383, 99; Janice Hecksel 106, 485.

RECESS

Carla Smith called the class back together leading song on page 36b. Leaders: Rick Russell 47b, 297; Lucy Jones 35, 365; Midge Harder 87, 535b; Karen Huss 236, 47t; Chris Thorman 46, 112; Carri Patterson Grindon 86, 213t; Johnny Wright 455, 145t. Johnny Wright (from Waco, Georgia) explained that Delta Airlines had given him a free ticket anywhere in the USA in apology for a guitar that had gotten broken on a flight to Germany with his band. Johnny decided to use his free ticket and come to Los Angeles.

Steven O’Leary gave the memorial lesson. He noted that the memorial lesson is less remote to him as he gets older and is pricked by loss. It didn’t mean so much when he was younger and couldn’t imagine dying. In Los Angeles, singers have sung with us and passed on. Also, those dear to singers have passed on. In a graveyard, gravestones try to make a permanent marking. Singing seems to be the antithesis of permanence; what’s more impermanent than a sound on the air? But, coming into the hollow square, we make a memorial more permanent and lasting than anything we carve in stone. Everything passes away. Nothing’s permanent The praise we sing is as permanent as anything in this world. As he read the names, he asked the class to remember that each person was precious to someone here. Those deceased: California—Leon Wilson, Mary Lou Jolley, and Peter Rydell. We sang 512 for the deceased.

In remembering the sick and shut-in, we find God in each other. Steven noted that he feels sustained by this singing community, that he experiences a powerful wave of Spirit washing through each voice that quenches our every thirst. We sang 510 for the sick and shut-in.

Al Grindon led songs on pages 40 and 28b. The class was dismissed for lunch with prayer led by Steven O’Leary.

LUNCH

Jerry Schreiber called the class back to order leading song on page 133. Leaders: Fred Dexter 45t, 528; Mary Rose O’Leary 217, 318; Carla Smith 189, 222; Steven O’Leary 144, 260; Laura Russell 270, 271t; Jerry Schreiber 66, 362; Carolyn Deacy 456, 290; Colin Henein (from Ottawa, Canada) 228, 547.

RECESS

Jerry Schreiber called the class back to order with song on page 82 (t? b?). Leaders: Betty Herman 29t, 421; Dan Voznick 316, 141; Anne Friend 198, 277; Elizabeth Webb 159, 148; Johnny Wright 300; John Ostwald 117, 268; Midge Harder 500; Colin Henein 312b; Tom Ostwald 126; Chris Thorman 299.

Jerry Schreiber asked for reports from various committees to be given. The Treasurer, Mike Laube, reported that the donations exceeded our expenses for this singing, and that the excess funds will be used to purchase books to loan to visitors.

The Resolutions Committee Chairman, Al Grindon, thanked the members of the Arranging Committee, Carolyn Deacy and Carla Smith, for their able service, all who brought food, Susan Turpin and Don Jones for arranging for the location, Rick and Laura Russell for many, many things, and Jerry Schreiber for making it all happen. Finally we thank God for this day, safe travel, for the church to sing in, and for all who organized the singing.

There were announcements of upcoming singings. Jerry Schreiber and Rick Russell led song on page 62, and all who wished took the parting hand. Steven O’Leary led the closing prayer.

Chairman—Jerry Schreiber; Vice Chairman—Rick Russell; Secretary—Susan Turpin.