Music at St. Francis Center

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Homeless and displaced people are one of the most marginalized communities in our society. Within classical music culture this is particularly apparent. Inside the concert hall, homeless people are persona non grata. However, they are certainly in need of the gift of music, which has the capacity to restore dignity and beauty to every human’s experience.
Since writing “Making a Musical Difference” a month ago, I connected with St. Francis Center in Denver. St. Francis offers a safe haven, day services, and employment programs for homeless people who congregate on the 16th Street Mall and surrounding parks in downtown Denver. The local non-profit “provides a place for transformation,” welcoming between 700 people on an average day and up to 900 on their busier days.
On Wednesday, I gave my first official performance at St. Francis. While many of the guests don’t have much exposure to classical music, they received my performance graciously, expressing their appreciation through scattered applause and words of thanks. I believe, given time, music will work its restorative magic.
I look forward to performing bi-weekly at St. Francis Center throughout the summer. I believe that music can transform lives, offering hope, beauty and dignity to those whom our society often overlooks. I am reminded of the words of Peter Maurin: “Modern society calls the beggar “bum” and “panhandler” and gives him the bum’s rush. But the Greeks used to say that people in need are the ambassadors of the gods.”

We Are Qualified

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Exodus 3 presents a wonderfully inspiring discussion between Moses and God. When God calls Moses to deliver the Jewish people from Egypt, Moses doubts what he is hearing saying, “Who am I? I’m not qualified.” God is the one who is qualified, and He works through us if we allow Him to. God spoke into Moses’ doubt and inadequacies. In the passage from Exodus, He makes that clear saying, tell them (the Jewish people) that God sent you. God doesn’t call the qualified. He qualifies the called.

Reflection Question: What doubts do you have today and how are you letting God speak into your situation?

Today’s Prayer: God, you speak into our hearts when we are facing challenges. Help us to hear your voice over the doubts that so often seem to drown it out. Amen.

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Adventuring with Music in Unexpected Places


Mountain peaks are our playground . . . and practice room. Our concerto concerts are held at the nearest bus stop. We play sonatas in soup kitchens, pizzicato in apartment elevators, throw BYOB house parties with Brahms, and bike through the mountains with our instruments strapped to our backs.

Who are we? FSM is a community of classical-trained musicians who dare to enjoy and share their music in the wildest places. FreeSpaceMusicians are united in seeking unconventional practice and performance spaces for the love of music and adventure. Spanning all ages and backgrounds, we are a new breed of musicians, who have left musty practice rooms behind to embrace the world as our stage.

Coming Soon – the FSM Facebook page! Connect with other FreeSpaceMusicians, learn about the newest and best places to practice or perform in both urban and outdoor settings, post photos of your newly found practice room, share your FSM thrills (and most embarrassing moments), and network with audiences in your local area.

Join the movement and discover the thrill of FreeSpace today!


Renewing Our Perspective

Spring Mountain Musings Banners2This week’s newly designed mountain scene (Garden of the Gods) got me to thinking about the ways in which our relationship with God changes based on our perspective. If you’ve ever been around mountains, you know that from a distance, they appear majestic, even intimidating. However, as you approach them, they often appear smaller. That’s how our relationship with God is like. At first, the idea of a relationship with God is hard to grasp. However, the closer we draw to Him, the more intimate or “smaller” our relationship becomes. Of course, neither God nor the mountains actually shrink; their potential is still there and a certain respect needs to be retained. Nevertheless, it is our engagement which allows us to transform our awe into relationship.

Reflection Question: How can you “shrink” the distance between yourself and God today?

Today’s Prayer from Anselm of Canterbury:

I pray that I may so know you and love you
that I may rejoice in you.
And if I may not do so fully in this life
let me go steadily on
to the day when I come to that fullness
Let me receive
That which you promised through your truth,
that my joy may be full.

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