Student blogger Hilary Shannon (fr 2015) recaps the inspiring Anzac Day Chapel service held in College earlier this week.
She has also written a piece for the College blog titled ‘What Anzac Day Means to Millenials’.
At 11am on 25 April, many Drew’s residents and other esteemed guests gathered in the Kinross Mackie Chapel for the annual Anzac Day Service. Principal Wayne Erickson led an excellent service with the help of many students and community members.
Our very own gifted organist Mr Titus Grenyer led with the Hymne pour l’Elevation by Berlioz, which was followed by the crowd’s hearty rendition of Advance Australia Fair. Wayne then kickstarted the service with an Anzac Day prayer leading into Hymn 31: O God, Our Help in Ages Past. Several more powerful hymns and lessons filled the remainder of the service, led by honourable College leaders such as Senior Tutor Elly Howse, Rosebowl Secretary Talor Hamilton, Honorary Assistant Treasurer Olivia Van Veen, and Dean of Students Jess Harper.
The service was privileged to hear from some of the College’s most talented musicians, starting with the Choir (exquisitely led by Director of College Music Dr Sarah Penicka-Smith)’s enactment of The Anthem: ‘Introitus & Kyrie’ from Requiem by Gabriel Faure. We then heard from the String Ensemble, directed by convener Jessica Wright, who played ‘Adante Festivo’ by Jean Sibelius. As usual we were blown away by not only the sheer individual skill we house here at Drew’s but the magical way in which it can be combined to produce such passionate and moving performances.
Perhaps the most interesting part of this year’s service was the Principal informing us of the stories of two different families with rich histories not only in the Australian Defence Force but also at St Andrew’s. These were the Beiths and the Griffiths, both of which are esteemed names with many individuals achieving notably high rankings in Australian defence forces. Men and women from both families have been living at St Andrew’s for generations, in the case of the Beiths even as recently as the current fResher year. We thank these families for everything they have done for our country and we are honoured to have housed them in our great halls. Wayne certainly delivered in reflecting our appreciations. The archival material in regards to the Beiths and the Griffiths was prepared by Senior Fellow and College Archivist Professor Ian Jack, whose hard work is gratefully acknowledged.
Other participants in the service who must be mentioned include the bugler fResher Samuel Vail, piper third-year Charlie Hunter, and wreath bearer fResher Hugo Mactier. The service ended with the moving Hymn 32: Eternal Father, Strong to Save. As all students came together in singing it (whatever the skill level!) this was a great time to reflect on the character of our community here at Drew’s, which thrives on coming together at occasions such as this in mutual passion, respect, and commemoration. Yet another outstanding Anzac Day has passed, but the values for which it stands remain a constant presence at St Andrew’s.
- Hilary Shannon (Fr 2015)