In memory of Tom McCulla

 

Kedron and Angelus

Kedron and Angelus

 

We joined with the Kedron Singers on 6th June to remember the life of Tom McCulla, a faithful memberof both Choirs. It was held in St Matthew’s Church of the Nazarene, Gordon Street, Paisley, and took the form of a variation of  Evensong.

We  remembered especially his musical ability and so incorporated music which he had written, music he loved, and also some pieces which had been written by others in his memory.  

I had dedicated the Nunc Dimittis from my setting for Evensong, to his memory, and the last piece he sang with us was at Ballachulish, where the first performance of  ‘I saw a new heaven and new earth’ was marred by a set of disdobedient organ stops! 

We  also  used a piece he wrote, and of which he was quite proud, called ‘Gentle Rain of God’ , and a setting of the 23rd Psalm by Kedron Choir Member John Brisbane in broad Scots, with some wonderful melodies!

It was quite an emotionally-charged event!

I hope Tom appreciated it all…..his family certainly did!

R.I.P. Tom McCulla

 Tom with Gill and Grace..Aug 2008

We mourn the passing of Tom McCulla, one of our Choir members, in his early fifties. He fought bravely, and with great humour, against a brain tumour, which latterly had affected his sight, and made him very tired. He passed away on Thursday 4th June at the Hospice in Airdrie.

He was an exceptional person….a quick mind with a penchant for corny puns, skilled and adventurous in his musical writing, a great keyboard player, (he was the senior person at the piano department of Biggars, in Glasgow),accompanying the Kedron Singers, and at his own Church, and with a desire to serve any church, of whatever denomination.

The photo above was one of his favourites, and shows him at one of our visits to St. Aidan’s, Clarkston, in September 2008. By that time he knew how serious the tumour was, but still managed to show us that cheeky, child-like grin which was one of his great features.

Ballachulish ..Mar 2009

His last event with us was at Ballachulish (see him second from the right, in the back row), when we joined the congregation at St John’s Episcopal Church and many others, on a miserable, snowy, cold 8th March, for a wonderful Service of Sung Evensong.

We had all been worried about the wisdom of his journey and participation, considering his state of health at the time, but he had been so looking forward to being with us that there was no way he could be left out.

So, due to the good and kind offices of two of our members, he was able to spend a weekend in the beautiful Argyll countryside, and join us in the singing as lustily as he was able.

A service of remembrance will be held on Thursday 11th at 11am, at St Matthew’s Church, Paisley.

He will be remembered by Angelus Singers, as much for his personality, as for his musical ability.

May he be happy, playing for the heavenly choir!

R.I.P. Gordon

 Gravestone

We record the death  of Gordon Moore, (2.1.1927-11.5.2009) someone known to most of our Choir. He was a great lover of church choral music, and in spite of the increasing disability caused by his deafness and Meniere’s, he continued to sing in the St Cyprian’s choir till just a few years ago. Even when the church choir was at a low ebb, he was always there in the back row.

His knowledge of music notation was not good so he learned his part by rote. His records about when and where hymns, tunes, anthems, chants etc had been used previously was often referred-to, to ensure variety in worship.

He was   also very good at Scottish Country dancing and the writer was once persuaded to go to an open night. Despite instructions from Gordon, feet, brain, and music failed miserably to co-ordinate, to the consternation of Gordon, who expected that everyone should be as good at it as he was.

Let’s hope that he can find a choir and/or a country dancing group, in the hereafter.