The Lord bless you and keep you
In 1939, “The Back to God Hour” radio show used this anthem as their closing piece, and it was eventually broadcast all over the world. Although many composers have set these words to music, Lutkin’s setting, composed in 1900, remains popular in hymnals and with congregations. The words come right from the Bible (Number 6; verses 22-27), where Mose’s brother, Aaron, is instructed to bless the people of Israel.
Peter C. Lutkin (1858- 1931) was orphaned at an early age and received his first musical training at St. James Episcopal Cathedral in Chicago. He went on to study music (received a doctorate from Syracuse) and served as organist of two Episcopal parishes in Chicago as well as being a teacher and composer. He was on the committees for the Episcopal hymnal (1918) and Methodist hymnal (1905) and was one of the founders of the American Guild of Organists (AGO). The AGO is a nationwide organization for church musicians, and I am a member of the Hartford Chapter.
Our music offering this week was accompanied on our Noack organ and sung by a small but wonderful group; Gerri Smith; soprano, Sandy Loether, and Nancy Lewandowski: altos, Bill Chatman; tenor, Scott Konrad: bass. Scott was the sound engineer who put it all together. This was an all-volunteer effort, and we thank you especially for taking time during your busy week to give this gift to us. May the Lord Bless You and Keep You.