St. Mildred’s Antiphons

Helen Nattrass shows the Archbishop of Canterbury the antiphon manuscript.

Helen Nattrass shows the Archbishop of Canterbury the antiphon manuscript.

Sunday 15th July was a busy day. In the morning CGMS-member Helen Nattrass was at St. Mildred’s Church, Canterbury. The Parish was celebrating their Patronal Feast with a Mass concelebrated by the Parish Priest, Father Mark Ball and the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev. and Rt. Hon. Dr. Rowan Williams. Helen sang one of the Antiphons of St. Mildred at Communion. The Archbishop of Canterbury was interested in the music and Helen showed him a print of the page from the manuscript which she had used to prepare the transcription. Later in the day, in Minster Parish Church, Solemn High Mass was celebrated by Bishop John Hine of the Catholic Archdiocese of Southwark. This was an important part of the celebrations for the 75th anniversary of the re-foundation of Minster Abbey as well as being the celebration of the Patronal Feast of its Benedictine Community. During the veneration of the relics of St. Mildred, Helen Nattrass and Mark Bateson joined members of the Benedictine Community to sing another of the Antiphons of St. Mildred. It was a poignant moment.
Since then Helen has visited the British Library to look at the source manuscript for these Antiphons. She found sixteen pages of music dedicated to St. Mildred, of which she had only seen prints of two pages previously. So over 2012-2013 CGMS hopes to see all this music transcribed and ready for singing.

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