"Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the
Lord Jesus Christ."
Philippians 1:2, ESV
About 6 years ago I hit a season where I was dealing with extreme anxiety that centered specifically around airports and flying on planes. This wouldn't have been so terrible for someone who doesn't travel, but for a girl who not only flew an average of twice a month and who also held the role of Road Manager, meaning I had to be the calm one who fixed any travel hiccups that arose...lets just say it was a huge issue. The low point by far was a trip home from the DC area where my entire flight was forced to deplane because the aircraft had a hole in the roof and rain was pouring through the ceiling into the laps of about 6 rows of passengers, myself included. When I got back to the gate, I sat on the floor, leaned against a column, called my husband, and dissolved into tears the minute he answered.
Music has always soothed my soul and had a profound experience on my physically as well and as I worked through how to overcome this anxiety, I made a playlist of calming tunes to listen to on repeat whenever I did have to fly. The bulk of the playlist was composed of songs from Michelle Margiotta's "No Words: Volume 1" (which you can actually download for free if you join her email list). But somewhere along the way someone recommended I check out this tune by Fernando Ortega and it became a staple in the mix. And by "staple" I mean, this one song on repeat play for entire cross-country flights.
I'm thankful to say the Lord has given me lots of victory over that anxiety in recent years. But that tune has remained a favorite. When I heard it, I instantly imagined my dear friend George Rowe singing it and sent it to him and for about 2 years we schemed that some day we'd play it in church, so when I had the opportunity to do a concert last summer, it was the first song that went on the setlist. With the advent of the pandemic, our musical director David Madeira has been creative about ways to continue to bring music that involves more musicians than we can safely bring together on a Sunday morning and his latest vision was to bring this song to life. He arranged the tune for piano, violin, viola, cello, flugelhorn and clarinet and George once again lent his voice to the lead vocal. (I'm re-posting that video above, see permissions below.)
I can't accurately articulate the deep peace and healing Fernando's original version of this song has brought to me over the years. And I'm deeply grateful to have had the opportunity to play a small part in re-creating it as part of this incredible ensemble of musicians. I pray it brings you the Grace and Peace of our Lord, Jesus Christ as well.
Musicians of St. Bartholomew's Episcopal Church, Nashville, perform Fernando Ortega's "Grace and Peace."
Lead vocal: George Rowe Instrumentalists: Bethany Bordeaux (violin), Doug Carpenter (viola), Mark Lickey (flugelhorn), Paul Nelson (cello), Joy Pratt (clarinet). Musical adaptation and video production/editing by David Madeira. Audio mixed by Tim Lauer. Videography by Matthew Shepherd and David Madeira.
Words: Philippians 1:2. Music by John Andrew Schreiner and Fernando Ortega. © 2006 Curb Songs, Cerdo Verde Music, and John Andrew Schreiner Music; admin. Curb Records, Lori Kelly Rights & Licenses, and Curb Music Publishing. Used by permission. CCLI#4854694
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Bethany is a freelance violinist/fiddler and tour manager who works with artists & events such as Kelly Minter, Cultivate: A Gathering Around The Word and Laura Story. She and her husband Keith live in Nashville, TN with their daughter Clare, cat & 6 backyard chickens. For more info on Bethany, visit her bio page!!