March 27th, 2011 browsing by day


Sunday March 27 Haarlem

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

It is another gorgeous bright crisp Spring day. We needed gloves on the bike ride to Haarlem this morning. Holland went to Summertime last night, so it was early. The service at the Cathedral was a real treat for me. Every other Sunday the Cathedral Boys Choir accompanies the Sunday 10 o’clock mass. Pure, crystal clear voices. There are a few older men who were at one time members of the boys choir. Two 10/12 year olds sang a duet, without amplification and you could hear them loud and clear in the back of the cathedral. Superb accoustics. Listen to them 03 Nummer 3 .   They sang Ave Verum Corpus from Edwar Elgar, during the offertory. Unforgettable.

But it as a I have written before, the congregation barely outnumbered the choir with an average age above 65. Last week’s collection was below 500 Euroes… In many countries I have visited full churches and much lower age averages who would kill for the maginificent churches and the liturgical accompaniment here. The over hundred Saint Matthew passion performances this Easter season in Holland are sold out at ticket prices from $50 to $75. The Dutch worship the music and architecture inspired through the Faith of their forefathers but feel no need to worship the same God who inspired the architects and Bachs and Haendels.

Saturday Evening Post 27 March Barneveld

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

The Boonzaaijers were my hosts for most of the weekend. I last saw them in the anchorage in front of the “Jimmy Buffet” cafe on Huaini in French Polynesia, in 2005. Maria grew up in the same neighborhood, Rivierenbuurt, as I did, in Amsterdam. A couple with many talents and well travelled. Stephan is a Protestant pastor and the leader of a community in Barneveld where several families and individuals live together and share meals, discussions and devotianals in their community center “de Bondgenoot”

Maria has recently published her book “Papa Tango”. I could not put it down. It will be available in English and I will let every one know. Voor de Nederlanders “a must read”:

It is a story about a classical soprano searching for her Argentinian father and younger sister in Argentinia. I shared some of my life’s experiences with the community in their Friday evening meeting and I felt very blessed by their response and sense of community with each other.

Sunday morning I will bicycle with Riet, my cousin’s wife, to the mass at the basilica in Haarlem, Sint Bavo. There will be pictures, I promise and   most likely of bulb field we’ll be passing on our way, I promise.

The community in Barneveld, part of Stephen on left