December 15, 2008

MUSIC: The “Glitter Song”

All good Christmas concert tours must come to an end. My favorite song this year was "the glitter song." The actual title of the song is "God Is with Us" (Amy Grant does a terrific rendition). At the words "Love is reigning down on the world tonight" we toss glitter. Big, flaky, pinky-purply-blue-green-red, metallic-y, shiny glitter. It's quite lovely. I begin the glitter tossing, and then whisper in the ear of the next sister who then tosses her glitter and so on, symbolizing the spreading of the Good News. Only problem is, the other sisters don't toss their glitter the way I want them to, i.e., the way I do.

I toss my glitter drama girl style. All exaggerated motions.


Sr. Bernadette Mary tosses her glitter, like, Whee!


Sr. Maria Kim-Ngan tosses her glitter very gently, but precisely.


Sr. Nancy Michael tosses her glitter very matter-of-factly.


Sr. Fay Josephine tosses her glitter very slowly, casually, and watches it fall to the last piece.


I have been annoyed by this lack of symmetry for the past TWO years that we've sung this song. But this year I had a realization. Each sister EVANGELIZES differently, according to who she is, so of course she tosses her glitter differently!


As we did this tour, we did impromptu mini-concerts here and there:


--to one of our elderly dying sisters, Sr. Nazarene, in the hospital, Boston.


--to one of our dear friends (whom we forgot to invite to the concert) at his home, Boston.


--to a woman who had a stroke and couldn't come to the concert, in the hospital, Philadelphia.


--and, perhaps, best of all, to a table of Philadelphia public school administrators in a restaurant, at their request. (We made sure to sing the glitter song, but we didn't throw anything.)


None of the parishes or venues we've sung at have complained about the inevitable glitter that remains behind. (We bring our own cleaning accoutrements, but it's impossible to get it all.) Perhaps they like the reminder of Christmas all year long, ground into their rugs.


One person suggested we get a glitter gun and blast everyone with it, but have a winning number inscribed microscopically on one of the glitter pieces, and then people will be picking glitter out of their hair looking for the number…. Can you guess if this person was male or female?


Here are the lyrics to this beautiful song:


GOD IS WITH US


The skies don't seem to be as dark as usual.
The stars seem brighter than they've been before,
and deep within I feel my soul is stirring.
As though my hope has been restored.


The shepherds say they've heard the voice of angels
confirming rumors spread across the land,
that a child protected well from Herod's anger
is our Father's Son, and the Son of Man.


Love is reigning down on the world tonight. TOSS YOUR GLITTER!
There's a presence here I can tell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel.
He's the Savior we have been praying for
in our humble hearts He will dwell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel.


I feel compelled to tell all who will listen
that peace on earth is not so out of reach
if we can find grace and mercy and forgiveness--
HE is all of these!


Love is reigning down on the world tonight. TOSS YOUR GLITTER!
There's a presence here I can tell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel.
He's the Savior we have been praying for
in our humble hearts He will dwell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel.


4 comments:

  1. Sr.~ One of my most favorite Christmas CD's EVER is from the DSP - it's old - like it could have been a gift for our first married Christmas together - and it makes my heart fill with joy when we listen to it.

    I'm envisioning the glitter...it sounds lovely.

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  2. being part of the choir i never listen to our stuff--except our cmas albums! they really are quite good. may God grant me humility. amen.

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  3. Just found your profile. What a great post!

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  4. Sister Helena, the whole concert was special, but this song was had a special touch to it. As you were blogging about the different ways the Sisters "glitterize" I realized that during the performance I hadn't noticed the differences, only the glitter raining, until I read your post. Then I became aware of the differences in approach and realized as you did how those differences are gifts and really do represent the uniqueness with which we live and share the Gospel. Your post also spoke to me about the beauty of community life.

    It was great seeing you and hearing you.

    I hope that this ministry continues to grow. It's a wonderful blessing.

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