Archive for the ‘Gilbert and Sullivan’ Tag

Feast of Thomas Helmore (July 7)   Leave a comment

Above:  Thomas Helmore

Image in the Public Domain

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THOMAS HELMORE (MAY 7, 1811-JULY 6, 1890)

Anglican Priest and Arranger and Composer of Hymn Tunes

Thomas Helmore comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Methodist Hymnal (1966).  Perhaps his most famous contribution to Christian worship is his arrangement of VENI IMMANUEL for “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.”

Above:  Lichfield Cathedral

Image Source = Google Earth

Helmore, from nonconforming stock, found his spiritual home in High Church Anglicanism.  Our saint, born in Kiddenminster, Worcestershire, England, on May 7, 1811, was a son of Olive Holloway and Congregationalist minister Thomas Helmore.  (Aside:  Would suffixes, such as “Sr.,” “Jr.,” and “III” have been too much to use, to help keep relatives with the same names separate in one’s mind?  I guess so.)  Thomas, Jr., (or III or whatever), studied at Magdalen College, Oxford (B.A., 1840; M.A., 1845).  He also joined the ranks of priests in The Church of England in 1840.  Helmore served as the Curate of St. Michael’s Church, Lichfield, and the Vicar of Lichfield Cathedral, from 1840 to 1842.  He was frequently the Vice-Principal and Presenter of St. Mark’s College, Chelsea (1842-1977); the Master of Choristers of the Chapel Royal (1846f); and a priest at the Chapel Royal (1847f).  One of his students at the Chapel Royal was Sir Arthur Sullivan (1842-1900), one half of Gilbert and Sullivan.

Helmore became a leader in restoring plainchant in The Church of England.  He also composed hymn tunes for some of John Mason Neale‘s translations of Latin and Greek texts.  Furthermore, Helmore edited volumes of chants and anthems.  In 1855, our saint translated Treatise on Choir and Chorus Singing, by François-Joseph Fétis (1784-1871).  Helmore’s other publications included:

  1. The Psalter Noted (1849),
  2. The Canticles Noted (1849),
  3. A Manual of Plainsong (1850),
  4. The Hymnal Noted (1852-1854),
  5. A Brief Directory of Plain Song (1853),
  6. Carols for Christmas (1853),
  7. Carols for Easter (1853),
  8. St. Mark’s College Chant Book (1863),
  9. The Canticles Accented (1870),
  10. A Catechism of Music (1878),
  11. Plain-Song (1878), and
  12. A Fuller Directory of the Plain Song of the Holy Communion Service (1881).

Helmore, 78 years old, died in London on July 6, 1890.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JULY 3, 2020 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS FLAVIAN AND ANATOLIUS OF CONSTANTINOPLE, PATRIARCHS; AND SAINTS AGATHO, LEO II, AND BENEDICT II, BISHOPS OF ROME; DEFENDERS OF CHRISTOLOGICAL ORTHODOXY

THE FEAST OF SAINT DIONYSIUS OF ALEXANDRIA, PATRIARCH OF ALEXANDRIA, AND CHURCH FATHER; SAINT EUSEBIUS OF LAODICEA, BISHOP OF LAODICEA; AND SAINT ANATOLIUS OF ALEXANDRIA, BISHOP OF LAODICEA

THE FEAST OF SAINT HELIODORUS OF ALTINUM, ASSOCIATE OF SAINT JEROME, AND BISHOP OF ALTINUM

THE FEAST OF IMMANUEL NITSCHMANN, GERMAN-AMERICAN MORAVIAN MINISTER AND MUSICIAN; HIS BROTHER-IN-LAW, JACOB VAN VLECK, U.S. MORAVIAN BISHOP, MUSICIAN, COMPOSER, AND EDUCATOR; HIS SON, WILLIAM HENRY VAN VLECK, U.S. MORAVIAN BISHOP; HIS BROTHER, CARL ANTON VAN VLECK, U.S. MORAVIAN MINISTER, MUSICIAN, COMPOSER, AND EDUCATOR; HIS DAUGHTER, LISETTE (LIZETTA) MARIA VAN VLECK MEINUNG; AND HER SISTER, AMELIA ADELAIDE VAN VLECK, U.S. MORAVIAN COMPOSER AND EDUCATOR

THE FEAST OF JOHN CENNICK, BRITISH MORAVIAN EVANGELIST AND HYMN WRITER

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially Thomas Helmore)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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