"9/11 | Coming Together" 20th Anniversary Special

The Tabernacle Choir Blog

Day 5 Fathers Day in Schaumburg

Bonita Cross
Alto- Mormon Tabernacle Choir

Sunday, June 16—R and R and Father’s Day in Schaumburg

There’s nothing like a Tabernacle Choir sacrament meeting. It’s wonderful to look out over this singular congregation and notice that everyone is singing. And we can sing the melody if we want to. After receiving the sacrament, we listened to inspiring words from Sister Debbie Cardon. She spoke about fathers, mentioning her own dad, who used to say, “I can fix anything but a broken heart, and I can make that feel better.” She also paraphrased Erma Bombeck: “If God made fathers child-sized, who would children look up to?”

A special musical number was presented by 16 members of the Choir organization—all of whom have served Italian-speaking missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They favored us with a rousing chorus of “Hark, All Ye Nations!” sung in Italian, of course.

“In the midst of this tour, this morning we gathered together and made holy this hall as you lifted your voices together and bore testimony through song.” This is how Elder Craig Cardon began his message to us. He is a member of the LDS Church’s Quorum of the Seventy. Elder Cardon, who has presided over the Italy Rome Mission, spoke of his appreciation of music and its power. “It is a medium that can be used to teach by the Spirit. Choir members have the ability, because of their closeness to music, to feel it especially. All of Heavenly Father’s children have that ability.”

The afternoon was ours to rest, visit, venture out to enjoy the beautiful day, and reflect on our dads. We met again for a delicious supper and were treated afterward to a fireside presented by Ron Gunnell, assistant to the president of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir organization. Ron’s special assignment is to arrange for and host our special guest artists.

He presented pictures and videos and told of his adventures in securing many of these guests. He spoke of the enduring friendships created over the years. Most recently we welcomed back internationally- known baritone and dear friend Bryn Terfel, with whom we collaborated on an upcoming Deutsche Grammophon CD recording expected to be released in September. I was particularly touched by those times Ron spoke of when things weren’t going the way he had hoped, so he “listened” and promptings came and things worked out. He talked of his association with Angela Lansbury, Walter Cronkite, Audra McDonald, Peter Graves, Mike Wallace, Natalie Cole, David Archuleta, Jane Seymour, Alfie Boe, and many others. As Choir and Orchestra members, we show up when and where we are asked. We make music and follow through as requested with rarely a glimpse of what has combined to make much of what we do possible. This evening’s fireside was a wonderful opportunity to see just a bit more behind the scenes.

Having a GREAT time! Wish you were here!