The Compline Choir has three openings beginning August 24

The Compline Choir20130113_0010-Edit, an all-male ensemble, has three openings for countertenor, high tenor, and low bass beginning August 24.

Interested singers should send résumé or curriculum vitae to the Director by June 28; also, list two references who can speak to your musicianship and singing ability.  Those invited for in-person auditions should prepare a lyric song showcasing legato, sustained singing, be prepared to sight read music in modern and square-note notation, and will undergo a variety of music fundamentals and ear training diagnostics. Auditions are Sunday evenings, 6:30-7:30pm, through July 13. Finalists will be notified by July 16.

All members of the Compline Choir, including its Director, are unpaid and commit to rehearse for and sing in 44 of 52 Compline services per year, with one or two added special per year. The choir rehearses Sunday evenings, 7:30-9:15pm, and chants the office of Compline Sunday nights, 9:30-10pm.

Photo Gallery: Peter R. Hallock [color]

Here is a collection of color photos of Peter Hallock. Again, these have posted to Facebook already, but not everyone has that, so enjoy a trip down memory lane—this time in color.

Perhaps you have a favorite photo of or story about Peter you’d like to share? Send them to me via email.

Photo Gallery: Peter R. Hallock [b&w]

Here is a collection of black and white photos of Peter Hallock. These have posted to Facebook already, but not everyone has that, so enjoy a trip down memory lane! I plan to post the color photos soon.

The Bishop’s Cross (1958)

“The most precious treasure of the Church is her worship. And when, to this great purpose, a great art and talent is added, then we are able to offer to the Lord a superb gift indeed. It is hard to remember any great occasion in the life of our diocese which has not been enriched by the skill and loving care of this young man. His art and his gifts are God’s and not his; but his generous and tireless devotion to his Church is his responsibility, and well does he fulfill it, whether it be a Te Deum for our Centennial or a puppet show for our clergy Christmas dinner. He has been a teacher and a guide for many; he has written, for the love of God, things of beauty that have moved and lifted all our hearts; as a son of this diocese, he has brought great richness to it; and I wish that Peter Hallock would accept the Bishop’s Cross from the shepherd whose heart he has gladdened time and time again.”

—Bishop Stephen F. Bayne, Jr., 1958

Many thanks to Diane Wells, Archivist for the Diocese of Olympia, for sending me this quote. Note that Peter was awarded a second Bishop’s Cross by Bishop Vincent Warner in 1991.

The Rock

PRH_BoyI see a young boy working quietly away,
On a letter he is trying to send out today,
Telling of the fun they all had that one night
When “a fish in the wheel” had put out the light.

How Bobbie had started a fire in the hearth,
And started to cook for all she was worth.
With a pan in one hand and an egg in the other,
Which she cracked in the pan for a fine little brother.

For, he is a fine boy, from his feet to his head
Which his Uncle has nicknamed his Strawberry Red.

Now, who do you s’pose is that cute little Lad,
Whose smile is so bright and whose face is so glad,
Who writes such nice letters to his Uncle and Aunt,
Who lights up a lamp when the ’lectric light can’t,
And draws us ink roses and sends his love too?
I’ll say that this boy knows just what to do.

Well, this boy is Peter, and when his Aunt read
All the news he so lovingly sent us, she said:
“How sweet,” and the smile that came into her eyes,
Was the tender sweet glow of a happy surprise.

So, Peter, please write us again and again,
Then we’ll know that you love us.

We sincerely remain,
Uncle Chas. and Aunt Edna

Found in the Hallock family scrapbook at Peter’s home. It was Uncle Charles and Aunt Edna who introduced Peter to puppeteering at the age of 9 or 10 and it is Peter’s interest in puppeteering that brought about the collaboration with Aurora Valentinetti—the liturgical drama Everyman being a prime example of their collaborative creative output.

Photo of Peter Rasmussen Hallock as a schoolboy, ca. 1932.

February 2: Candlemas Procession & Compline (Night Prayer)

an_lumen_ad_revelationemOn Sunday, February 2 at 9:30pm, the Compline Choir will pray the office of Compline by candlelight at St. Mark’s Cathedral in Seattle. 

Those in attendance will be invited to take a candle; the Compline Choir will share light with you as we process through the church. It’s our hope that all present will pray, listen, contemplate, meditate, think—by the light of that candle. 

Incense will be used that night. This is a first in the history of Compline at St. Mark’s.

Why Compline by candlelight? February 2 is the Feast of the Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple; others call it Candlemas, other the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, still others the Meeting of Our Lord. Our “Candle Mass” begins with the blessing of candles at the crèche in McCaw Chapel at St. Mark’s Cathedral. We will light our candles and then process through the church singing, while sharing this light with those present, so that they may share it with others. For Jesus said, “You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others.”

Curious about the origins of this feast day? February 2—the 40th day after Christmas—we see the infant Jesus again, presented in the temple for the first time Mary and Joseph. In Luke 2:22-40, we meet Simeon and Anna, both of whom have been waiting in the temple for the Anointed One. Both rejoice and praise God upon seeing Jesus!  In this story, we read one of the great canticles—a Biblical text arranged as poetry—which we call the Nunc dimittis or Song of Simeon. This canticle is sung at every Compline service.

Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace according to thy word.
For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,
Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;
To be a light to lighten the Gentiles and to be the glory of thy people Israel.

Photo Gallery: Sing & Play Along Messiah 2013

An orchestra of 29 players was more than we had ever hoped or dreamed for—and our choir numbered 76 persons! A preliminary tally of contributions to “Merry Christmas Issaquah” and Issaquah Community Services indicates we’re very close to our goal and we expect a few more checks to come in the mail this week. Thank you!

Mark your calendars for the 2014 Sing & Play Along Messiah on Sunday, Dec. 14 at 2:30!

The liturgical Christian… in Advent and at Christmas

What we do in our faith tradition is highly countercultural. When the calendar rolls over to December, our faith tradition calls us to something other than Christmas—Advent. This year, Advent begins on December 1. While the rest of the world is decked in red, green, silver, and gold, we are adorned in the brilliantly deep blue-purple hue known as “Sarum blue,” a name derived from the Latin word for Salisbury, UK—the cradle of all things Anglican.

If you’re looking for fun family activities during Advent, try one of these: (1) make an Advent wreath and observe your own candle lighting at home; (2) read or sing and meditate on the verses to Hymn 56 (O come, O come, Emmanuel) and talk about the images and characters mentioned in the verses; (3) slowly assemble the family manger scene/crèche with each character beginning its journey from somewhere else in the home, and remember, Jesus doesn’t appear until Christmas night!


When invited to the office holiday party, don’t wear a Christmas sweater. Instead, don your best blue or purple attire. You’ll stand out in the crowd. If anyone should ask you if you’re sad or why you’re not in the holiday spirit, just tell them, “It’s Advent. Christmas doesn’t begin until Christmas night and lasts a whole 12 Days!” For when the secular calendar hits December 26, Christmas is over and the rush to put it all away begins in haste. However, for those of us liturgical Christians, Christmas has just begun!