St. Matthias Musicale
This year’s event, “A Musicale for St. Matthias,” was an extraordinary evening of music, singing, eating, and most importantly, coming together as a community to support St. Matthias in Deslandes, Haiti.
The evening started with a moving trombone performance by Ehren Valmé, Peter Charles’s Juilliard-trained nephew, accompanied on the piano by Ruobing Zhang. Their very accomplished duets instilled a sense of peace to those in the audience.
The trombone and piano pieces were followed by a joyous musical performance by parishioners Blake Hanson, Libby and Matt O’Connell, and their friend, JT Esposito. Their folk renditions of popular classic tunes were accompanied by an amazing array of instruments, including guitar, banjo, fiddle, violin, mandolin and harmonica, and inspired the crowd to join them in singing and clapping!
The final group to perform was a French Baptist choir, La Voix des Anges (The Voice of Angels), from the Sanctuary of Praise. The richly powerful voices of these three women filled the church with beautiful and prayerful songs that reminded many of us of our experience worshipping in Haiti.
The program concluded with all the performers gathered onstage together, joining organist Carol Weitner, members of St. John’s choir, and the audience for rousing and deeply moving renditions of “All Glory Laud and Honor" and “Amazing Grace.”
After the musical portion of the evening, everyone gathered in Bleecker Hall for delicious Creole hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. The live raffle included two baskets full of fun treats and goodies and the silent auction had several wonderful items including an evening sail, a weekend in Vermont, and pizza with the Pollachs!
The Fete was fun for all who were able to attend. Thank you to everyone who contributed to make this event a big success. With the support of all of us at St. John’s, St. Matthias has been able to stay open during this difficult time in Haiti, providing a safe education for its students and a sense of normalcy for their families.
It can be hard to feel or know the impact of our work in Haiti from this distance. But it is important to remember that our annual fundraising appeal for Haiti is a vital source of support for that community. Work that our community had begun many years ago is nearing completion, and contributions that were delivered are in need of replacement. To learn more about the impact of our work in Deslandes, please read Pere Michaud's powerful letter of thanks and encouragement immediately below.
Donations of support are always welcome and can be made directly to the church either through the website (a link appears below Pere Michaud's letter) or through the church's financial administrator, Danielle Holmes. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact Peter Charles or Heather Spehr, Co-chairs of the Haiti Committee, or Laura Swiggett, immediate past chair of the Haiti Committee and Chair of the Outreach Steering Committee.