Music contributes to a healing atmosphere in church to the degree that it expresses spiritual qualities. An organ voluntary by Purcell may express joy, vitality, the energies of Spirit. A toccata by Bach may hint at the might and majesty of divine Principle. A chorale prelude by Brahms may express the peace and tenderness of Soul and the warmth of Love. Whether we are musicians, music committee members, or appreciative listeners, we should strive to listen with spiritual sense. Our Leader, Mrs. Eddy, writes: "Comeliness and grace are independent of matter. Being possesses its qualities before they are perceived humanly. Beauty is a thing of life, which dwells forever in the eternal Mind and reflects the charms of His goodness in expression, form, outline, and color." Science and Health, p. 247.
In selecting music for the church service, the organist and soloist can look for pieces that show a high degree of inspiration. Thoughtful study of the Bible Lesson In the Christian Science Quarterly. will guide this choice, and it is wise for us all to review frequently Article XIX, "Music in the Church," in the Manual of The Mother Church by Mrs. Eddy. Our Leader's requirements can set a sterling standard for branch Churches of Christ, Scientist, as well as for The Mother Church.
In the field of church music, there is general agreement as to who the great masters are. The list would surely include Bach, Handel, Franck, Brahms, Mendelssohn, Buxtehude, Pachelbel, Couperin.Helpful repertoire lists of both organ music and church solos are available through Christian Science Reading Rooms. In light of our Leader's requirements, organists and soloists should be on guard against music characterized by banality or sentimentality.