Dies Irae – Day of Wrath

I played Rachmaninoff’s Vocalise at the organ some years ago, as prelude music for a church service in Maine. It was conducted by a guest minister whose mix of Liberation Theology and feminism shaped her sermon, and she did not hesitate to take shots at traditional Christianity. I was not a member of the church (organists in short supply in rural Maine made such things possible). My relationship with the regular minister, a woman also “liberated” by Marxist theology and feminism, was at best friendly. The guest minister was pleased with my choice of prelude music; Rachmaninoff was one of her favorite composers, she told me. I wondered if she would still love the music of Rachmaninoff if she knew that he was Orthodox –  if she knew that Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 1 carried an inscription from Saint Paul’s Epistle to the Romans: “Vengeance is mine: I will repay, saith the Lord.” What a strange “dedication” to a...(Read Full Article)
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