During this month celebrating the feast of Mary, Star of the Sea on September 27, Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity feature ‘Star of the Sea’ by Brett Jones. Brett is a University of Wisconsin Superior professor of music and percussionist. His composition is performed on vibraphone by Henry Eichman from the University of Duluth, MN, courtesy of C. Alan Publications. Access the full recording here.
“I have always been intrigued by the titles of St. Mary, in particular ‘Star of the Sea.’ So, I set out to compose a vibraphone solo that I would perform in honor of Mary. The traditional Marian chant, ‘Regina Caeli,’ or Queen of Heaven (another Marian title), kept running through my head and can be heard surrounded by melodic flourishes in the middle of this piece. As we contemplate the Blessed Virgin Mary, Star of the Sea, may her light be a beacon that guides us to her Son, Jesus Christ.”-Brett Jones
In our Diocese of Duluth, we have a parish that is dedicated to and named after St. Mary, Star of the Sea. It is built appropriately on one of the bluffs that gazes out to the sea that we call Lake Superior. The music that has been created by Brett Jones and performed by Henry Eichman on vibraphone, reflects both the parish and person of St. Mary, Star of the Sea, with its stirrings of life set forth within and above the waters, the tranquility of waves melodically brushing the shore and the radiant beauty of morning sunrises and nighttime stars assuring us of a light that pierces the darkness. The beauty and blessings of the piece, ‘Star of the Sea,’ is its profoundness in drawing us into Mary, who as our Star of Sea, will always lead us to our final destination in Jesus Christ, and the harbor of Heaven. St. Mary, Star of the Sea, pray for us! – Bishop Daniel Felton, Bishop of Duluth, Minnesota
In the video a number of parishes throughout the country and others have supplied stirring images to compliment the music. We acknowledge these creative interpretations: Star of the Sea, oil on canvas by Laeken Ramsey; Mary Star of the Sea by Br. Mickey McGrath, osfs, Courtesy of Trinity Stores, www.trinitystores.com 800.699.4482; Star of the Sea Church, Virginia Beach, Virginia; Our Lady Star of the Sea, New Orleans, Louisiana; NASA Image Gallery, https:www.nasa.gov; Mary Star of the Sea Lake Church, Belgium, Wisconsin; St. Mary, Mayville, Wisconsin; Theresa Smith, Staten Island, New York; St. Mary Star of the Sea Basilica, Keywest, FL and Star of the Sea Parish, San Francisco, California.
You tube: Brett Jones Percussion – YouTube