My name is David Osborne. I have been here for a while. It was September of 1980 when a friend from my second grade class, Garth Chalmers, told me about the choir here at Grace Church on-the-Hill. Sing for an hour and a half on Tuesday, then two hours on Thursday, preparing for Sunday services, and you got some pocket money for it? Seemed just too good to be true. I suppose I liked it, because here I am now thirty-eight years later. The choir has given me connections with so many great people throughout the years. When I started, one of the senior members was David Bradfield. I may not see him much anymore, but we all know the work that his mum, Helen, does here and when I see her, I remember the work she did as the first choir mother during my time here. Last year, we had 2 baptisms here, for the children of two former choristers in the same service. Interesting coincidence.
I’ve probably attended more than 1000 weddings and funerals here and I really do feel blessed to be a part of such important days for so many people. That, to me as a musician, is why Grace Matters. We have a varied and vibrant community here. There are parishioners I know, and those I do not, but music seems to touch everybody in some way, and sometimes people really need that. I still tear up when I hear Edward Elgar’s “Nimrod” played on the organ, as it reminds me of my Dad’s service here, just over 5 years ago.
We, here, today are all very fortunate to have such knowledgeable and caring music directors with Stephen and Sarah. It wasn’t that long ago that we really didn’t have any children singing. Now, well, have a look. We are thriving again, and that is how it should be. It is so wonderful, how they have rejuvenated the choir and its role here. We are very lucky to have you both here steering the ship, Stephen and Sarah. Grace is a better place for having you in it.
I could stand here for hours. Thirty-eight years creates a lot of memories. But I won’t. I’ll simply say that Grace Matters because we matter. Grace Matters because you matter, Grace Matters because, Ted, Peter and Ian mattered. Grace Matters because Nancy, Jamie, Fiona, Mary-Catherine, Graham, Linda and Mark matter. Grace matters because Helen, Julian, Reg, Francesca, Barbara and Lilo matter. We all play our parts. We all matter and that is why Grace Matters to me. I’m lucky to be surrounded by great people here. We are all lucky to have each other. It is because of us, that Grace will continue to matter.