Singing at home

Money and the Sacred Harp spirit

The Church Divinity School of the Pacific allows our Sacred Harp group to use their chapel for no charge. But we try to give them a donation at the end of each calendar year as an expression of our gratitude for welcoming us into such a beautiful singing space. I agreed to take on raising the money this year. Last week’s class, which was somewhat smaller than usual, contributed $94; this week’s class, which was large for us (about 27 people, by my rough count), with quite a few people who weren’t present last week, contributed $221; notification via email brought about $50 of promised contributions. As of now, total contribution from our Sacred Harp community will be $365.

What I liked best about our community’s contribution is that those of us who could give more did so; those who couldn’t afford to give much (grad students, underemployed or unemployed people) gave nothing or a token amount. We are not like some choirs I’ve belonged to, where you have to pay a set amount to attend rehearsals; Sacred Harp singers want everyone to sing, no matter what their financial status. For me, this is another example of the truly inclusive spirit of Sacred Harp singing.