I HAVE been looking through the varied programme of concerts in the 2019 Music in Romsey season which was launched two weeks ago.

The popularity of these concerts, held in the Abbey, all serve to remind us what music-makers and music-lovers human beings are.

For many, music lies near the heart of what they believe; music and faith go together for several reasons.

Music has enormous power to engage the emotions.

Anyone who’s attended a concert will be aware that they’ve witnessed an act of creation, from the notes envisioned by the composer to the interpretation of that score by the conductor and performers.

Music provides us with a means, another language if you like, to interpret our human experience and the mystery of life itself with its joys, pains, good and its evil. Where words fail, music often succeeds.

Then there’s time; a mystery that every musician understands. Just as rhythm is to do with time, so time is essential to music. Through the employment of time, it gives us a vision of what lies beyond.

The composer Johann Sebastian Bach embraced time employing it to the glory of God to achieve his purpose and even managing to incorporate silence through the use of rests.

Finally there’s the beauty of music. Every experience of beauty in this world is a kind of gateway to another world than this, an echo of an eternal harmony.

Every experience of beauty is the call of God, the source and meaning of all beauty.

Music is one of the ways in which we hear and respond to that call.

Revd David Williams

Romsey Abbey