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Music News: A Great Concert this Sunday!

Updated: Feb 15

Tunes and Tapestries of Lent is this Sunday at 4:00 pm. I’m honored to work again with well-known Detroit harpist Christa Grix.

The program includes the melodies of the season, mostly hymns, and some other pieces that depict the contemplation we associate with the holy season of Lent. Christa has chosen to play many of her own pieces - some arrangements on Lenten hymns and some original works. Most of the piano pieces I’m playing are by the 20th century composers Claude Debussy and Bela Bartok. Two very different composers allow us to experience the soundscape of reflection. Of course, we have some choral preludes for organ by J. S.  Bach. We can’t have a recital including the organ without Bach!


I hope to see you on Sunday. It’s another way to enter into Lent through a sampling of some of the most powerful examples in the Classical repertoire.

- - Sean Michael


Here's my introduction to St. John that will be in the printed program on Sunday.

About St. John Lutheran Church

It started in an apple orchard as an ALC Mission Congregation in 1957. The first worship services were held in a school building. On April 27, 1958 the congregation was officially organized as St. John American Lutheran Church and the original worship space was built that same year. There were many expansions and revisions in subsequent years, culminating in the completion of the current sanctuary, dedicated in 2003. In 1987, St. John became a part of the new Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).

Over the years St. John has been an important presence in the downtown Farmington area and beyond. It has been a strong participant in the community-wide CROP Hunger walk and for years it participated with Antioch Lutheran Church to support an annual ministry to serve the homeless in Oakland County. St. John has a long history of providing support for projects benefiting the needy in the local community and wider world. The current Pastor, Rev. Dr. Mark Fisher, is the 7th full-time pastor of the congregation.

The music program at St. John is central to the worship experience. It includes an adult choir of approximately twelve singers which is an enthusiastic and committed group who minister through music.  The choir leads in Sunday worship services and practices weekly.  

Occasionally, a group of four or five bell ringers enhance the service.  The ensembles are supported by three instruments in the church.  The pipe organ is a two-manual instrument with pedal board.  There is a 6 ft. Yamaha grand piano in the sanctuary and a 6 ft. Boston grand piano in the choir rehearsal room.  

Regularly there are special concerts which feature local professional musicians such as today’s Tunes and Tapestries of Lent featuring Detroit harpist Christa Grix and our Music Director, Sean Michael Jackman, pianist and organist.

Since COVID, St. John has launched important ministries for those who have been abandoned in nursing homes, to advocate for those with intellectual and physical disabilities, and to provide free tutoring services for area elementary children who need additional help with reading and math. 

We believe

  • In a loving God evidenced by Jesus Christ - historical and living.

  • We see science and faith as valued partners in helping us understand life’s meaning.

  • We know that every person is a child of God with unique strengths that can be a powerful expression of God’s love.

  • In response to God’s love for all people, we welcome young and old; families, couples and singles; rich and poor; persons of all races, ethnicities, backgrounds, sexual orientations and gender identities. We also welcome those with differing physical and mental abilities, as well as believers and seekers. Every person joining our community adds profound value to the mystery of faith.

Finally, we work to become God’s hands and feet, applying the fundamentals of Shalom (compassion, mercy, justice, forgiveness and grace) in our mission of peace.

You are welcome to join us, in person or online, for worship on Sundays at 10:00 a.m., and on Wednesdays during Lent at 5:30 p.m. for soup supper followed by worship at 6:15 p.m.

Please visit our website: for links to our Zoom services, facebook page and YouTube channel, and other opportunities to join our community of compassion in service and fellowship.


Here's what's on the program:

I One Thread    

     Pedal-Exercitium   BWV 598att. Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)


II Two Threads

     Cornet Voluntary                                        John Travers  (ca. 1703-1758)

     Suite du premier ton: III Duo                           Louis-Nicholas Clèrambaut (1676-1749)

     Suite du deuxième: II Duo Louis-Nicholas Clèrambault (1676-1749)


III Three Threads

     Organ Sonata No. 1                                      Paul Hindemith (1895-1963)

             2. Sehr langsam


     Lenten Hymns                                                     arr. Christa Grix (b. 1957)

           Lord, Who throughout These Forty Days

          The Glory of These Forty Days

           What Wondrous Love                                                                                 


     Children’s Corner: 4. The Snow is Dancing     Claude Debussy (1862-1918)

     La cathédrale engloutie (The Sunken Cathedral)       Claude Debussy (1862-1918)

     Pour le piano: III Toccata                           Claude Debussy (1862-1918)



Garden Path Christa Grix ( b. 1957)

Morning Glory

     Trillium Dreams

     Black Orchid


Hymne à Sainte Cécil, CG 55 Charles-François Gounod (1818-1893)


Mikrokosmos, Volumes IV, V and VI                    Bèla Bartók (1881-1945)


     From the Island of Bali

     Subject and Reflection



Au Monastère: esquisse pour la harpe, Op. 29    Alphonse Hasselmans (1845-1912)


“Come Sunday”              Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington (1899-1974)


“L-O-V-E”                                                              Bert Kaempfert (1923-1980)


Herzlich tut mich verlangen, BuxWV42                      Dietrich Buxtehude (1607-1637)

(O Sacred Head, Now Wounded)                                                                       


From Sechs Choräle von verschiedener Art                  Johann Sebastian Bach  (1865-1750)

          (“Schübler Chorales”)       

     Auf meinen lieben Gott, BWV 646 (In my beloved God)

     Schmücke dich, o liebe Seele, BWV 654 (Soul, Adorn Yourself with Gladness)


Aria in Classic Style for Harp and Organ, Op. 19          Marcel Grandjany (1891-1975)

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