Wednesday, September 30, 2009

My Memories of Neal

Neal was so wonderful and warming on my first day of joining the Scituate Choir. I knew we hit it off when he sang soprano to me and I replied in bass. I can remember working with both Neal & Leo on the Mozart concert at his house, spending countless hours rehearsing, sharing and laughing. I can hardly believe he's gone. Caeli's at his house consisted of more laughter singing and trying to out do one another with the worst pun. We shared a love of photography - exchanging many pictures, I shall charish his photos and thank you all for sharing yours of him. I'm so glad you all are sharing - I have no pictures with me of Neal as I've just moved to Texas.

My heart felt sympathy for his family, I hope you dwell more on the celebration of his life - he was such a wonderful, loving, unique friend.

Please post where he will be interred, I would like to stop by and pay my respects when I get the chance to come home to MA.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Order of Service

Please email by Thursday, Oct. 1, 2009, if you are interested in participating in the giant choir at Neal's memorial service.

Here is the Order of Service:

A Celebration of the Life of
J. Neal Gray
May 31, 1924—September 26, 2009

The Order of Service
(BCP is the red book in the pew)

Prelude Music
Mingulay Boat Songl, tune Song of Isles: Solo Kathy Moore
Opening Anthem BCP p. 491
Hymn: Eternal Father, strong to save (Naval Hymn) Blue Hymnal, 608
Collects BCP p. 493/4

The Liturgy of the Word
The Lessons:
Isaiah 61: 1-3 Nick Waterman
Psalm 23 sung by Neal Gray Memorial Choir
Romans 8: 14-19, 34-35, 37-39 Steve Immerman
Choir Anthem Jesus the Apple Tree
The Holy Gospel John 14: 1-6
The Homily the Rev. Grant Barber
- William Liscomb
- Julie Williams
- Melissa Bonomi
- Leo Harrington
Choir Anthem Heal Our Land
Prayers of the People BCP p. 497

The Peace
Choir Anthem Total Praise Blue Hymnal 593

The Holy Communion

The Great Thanksgiving BCP p. 361
Sanctus front of Blue Hymnal S 125
The Lord’s Prayer BCP p. 364
The Breaking of the Bread (said)
Communion Schubert
Post Communion Prayer BCP p. 498
Choir Anthem He Reigns Forever
The Commendation
Dismissal Hymn: Beechspring back of hymnal
Hymn: For all the saints Hymnal 287

Members of all churches (Roman Catholic, Protestant, or Eastern Orthodox) are invited to receive communion with the family.

The Reception follows immediately at PJ’s Restaurant on Chief Justice Cushing Highway

Need RSVPs for singers in the choir

On Mon, Sep 28, 2009 at 10:24 PM, lisa.a.lauterbach wrote:

Just to let you know, our business manager, Norris Welch, for Boston Community Choir is working with the priest and the church choir director re: numbers of singers for the "mass choir" that will sing Saturday morning. He needs to hear back from people directly with "RSVP's" so to speak, so they'll have an idea re: how to make space for people in the choir loft, etc. For all info re: singers for mass choir, please contact Norris at:


Details of funeral service

This was sent to the Mystic Chorale email list by Mary Bergeron:


LOCATION: St. Luke's Episcopal Church, 465 First Parish Road,
Scituate, MA
DATE / TIME: Saturday, Oct 3, 2009 from 11A - 12:30P (this is
the full service, NO wake)
DIRECTIONS: are attached in this email

A huge mass choir is expected to be put together for this service that will sing 2-3 choir songs and about 2 congregational hymns. ALL music will be handled by the church's music director, Jean Anderson Collier. I am told the songs will NOT be difficult, and is probably something that will be recognized by most people, and to NOT worry about this part. A confirmation of the songs will be discussed at the 4pm family meeting on Tuesday, and they will get that info to me to pass out.

If you are interested/able to sing in this mass choir, you are asked to do the following: (1) send email to so they can try to prepare enough space in the choir area to accomodate everyone, (2) arrive at the church at 9:30A for the rehearsal for the songs. (3) please wear the choir garment that your group normally sings in as this wil show the differences in the many groups Neal was associated with.

Celebration of Neals' Life

Now confirmed with both the family and the funeral home: the Celebration of Life for Neal will be this coming Saturday at 11 a.m. at our parish. There are no calling hours the day before. Reception will follow immediately at PJs Restaurant in Scituate.

I am encouraging all who sang with Neal and would like to sing for his funeral to be at the church by 9:30 a.m. for a rehearsal. I am picturing a wonderful, vibrant choir made up of people from all of Neal's various choirs.

I'll be sending Norris the list of songs that will be sung as anthems by the choir as well as hymns for choir and congregation. I am meeting with the family Tuesday at 4 p.m. to go over those sorts of details. If you plan to joing this 'unified' choir then please wear what you ordinarily would to a concert--choir robes, or formal wear. Norris will be in further contact with choir members.

Please pass word along to any who are not on this email list who would want to know, and do not hesitate to email me or call the cell phone listed below.

Grant Barber

St. Luke's Episcopal Church

465 First Parish Rd
Scituate, MA
cell: 781-974-3210
Services Sunday 8 & 10 a.m.
All Welcome!


Directions to St. Luke's:

Take 3 south of Braintree to exit 13.

At the end of the exit there is a light. Take a left at the light; signs toward Norwell/Hingham.
Less than a mile up there is another light (Assinippi General Store on your right, Dunkin Donuts across the street). This is Route 123, going through Norwell. Take that right.
You will travel several miles all through Norwell, passing as well the State Highway Patrol Barracks where the speed limit is 25...just a heads up there.

You will eventually come to a rotary in Scituate. Despite what the signs say about reaching Scituate, you want to take the fourth exit off of the rotary...that will be coming almost full circle around from where you started. This is Route 3A north, also called Chief Justice Cushing HIghway.

A bit more than a mile up you will come to the next traffic light.

St. Luke's Episcopal Church, 465 First Parish Road, will be on your right.
Parking is in both front and back of church (much more in the back), as well as use of town hall's lot across the street. I'll try to have someone sitting by the church phone to field questions from lost people: 781-545-9482.


9/27/09: Neal Gray passed away last night into larger life. The doctors had given him little chance of recovery, and even then it would have been on permanent dialysis in a nursing home.

Plans are still in the making and probably won't be finalized until Tuesday. However it would make sense to keep Saturday open if you wish to attend the celebration of his life. Neal was a member of at least four choirs. We will ask that we have unified choir to sing all the anthems and hymns. Our choir director/organist, Dr. Jean Anderson Collier who is on faculty at the New England Conservatory of Music, will be the director of the choir. We ask that any who want to participate in the choir wear their performance clothes...choir robes, formal wear, whatever is your tradition. IF the funeral home falls in line with the plans that the the family has then rehearsal will be at 9:30 a.m. with service at 11 a.m. Confirmation of this is still needed.

If I could get the contact information for all the choir directors in order to coordinate flow of information it would be great.

Peace to you all.

+May the souls of the faithful departed through thy mercy or Lord, rest in peace; may light perpetual shine upon him forever.+

The Rev. Grant Barber

St. Luke's Episcopal Church
Scituate, MA
cell: 781-974-3210
Services Sunday 8 & 10 a.m.
All Welcome!