Re­mem­ber­ing loved ones

Fourth an­nual memo­rial hymn sing hosted by Holy Fam­ily Parish

Cape Breton Post - - Northside/Cape Breton - BY JULIE COLLINS jcollins@cb­post.com

Sharon Ian­netti or­ga­nized the first an­nual memo­rial hymn sing at Holy Fam­ily Parish four years ago.

“I wanted to have some­thing for the peo­ple that would draw us to­gether and for me it’s the mu­sic that does that,” said the or­gan­ist and choir di­rec­tor at the Syd­ney Mines church. “Peo­ple of all ages from all de­nom­i­na­tions are wel­come to at­tend.”

This year’s event takes place Sun­day at 7 p.m.

When she or­ga­nized the first hymn sing, Ian­netti thought it would be a one-time event.

“But it’s four now and we hope to con­tinue to hold the ser­vice each year,” she said. “The ser­vice lasts about an hour and a half. There are eight se­lec­tions and peo­ple as­so­ci­ate the per­son re­mem­bered with a par­tic­u­lar song.”

Ian­netti, who has 14 years ex­pe­ri­ence play­ing at fu­ner­als, nar­rowed the list down to the eight most re­quested hymns.

“There are so many won­der­ful se­lec­tions, but I picked the ones that seem to mean the most to peo­ple.”

The names of the de­ceased will be read aloud dur­ing the ser­vice be­fore each hymn se­lec­tion.

“The whole evening is cast in a spir­i­tual sense and dur­ing the ser­vice a can­dle is lit in re­mem­brance of the de­ceased,” said parish priest Fr. Jim Oliver. “When the ser­vice begins a si­lence de­scends upon the con­gre­ga­tion un­til that first hymn. It’s the par­tic­i­pa­tion of the con­gre­ga­tion in the hymns that brings alive within them the con­nec­tion be­tween their de­ceased rel­a­tives and friends. This al­lows us to go away from the ser­vice with a sense of grat­i­tude to God and a sense of peace.”

Ian­netti said most of­ten the con­gre­ga­tion does more singing than the choir or the spe­cial guests.

“We have flutist Richard MacAu­lay, vo­cal­ist Alan Gale and there will be a spe­cial num­ber or two from the Holy Fam­ily choir,” she said. “This isn’t meant to be a sad event, but a chance to re­mem­ber happy times with those who have gone from our midst. “

A light lunch will fol­low at the church hall.

“There are so many won­der­ful se­lec­tions, but I picked the ones that seem to mean the most to peo­ple.” Sharon Ian­netti

JULIE COLLINS/CAPE BRE­TON POST

Parish priest Fr. Jim Oliver and or­gan­ist and choir di­rec­tor Sharon Ian­netti in­vite peo­ple of all de­nom­i­na­tions to at­tend the fourth an­nual memo­rial hymn sing at Holy Fam­ily Parish in Syd­ney Mines on Sun­day.

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