McCreary Evensong Fund
The McCreary family established a fund, on the first anniversary of the death of the Cathedral’s Canon Organist Emeritus, to assure that Choral Evensong, so loved by John and central to Cathedral life, can continue in perpetuity. Donations to this fund can be made payable to St. Andrew’s Cathedral and marked “McCreary Evensong Fund.”
The Cathedral Organ Restoration
Can you imagine the Cathedral of St. Andrew without the sound of its magnificent pipe organ? The organ has harmonized hymns, resonated through the bodies of those attending worship and concerts, unified a community, and inspired countless people for generations.
The Cathedral’s Æolian-Skinner is the largest pipe organ in Hawai‘i and is a major asset to the musical life of Honolulu. In addition to cathedral worship, the organ is essential for weddings, concerts by visiting artists and dozens of community groups, and for the worship and traditions of the St. Andrew’s Schools.
Under the stress of six decades of heavy, continuous use and various assaults ranging from a leaking roof to termites, the organ is in serious disrepair. Due to roof leaks in 2006, 549 pipes are unplayable. A recent inspection found an additional 166 silent notes in other parts of the organ. Electrical problems in the termite-ridden console cause not only additional dead notes, but even notes to play at random on their own! The organ remains playable only though frequent and expensive repair of the most critical failures one by one. Without a thorough restoration, this instrument is likely to become unusable within a few years.
To address this situation, in 2014 St. Andrew’s engaged Schoenstein & Co., the oldest and largest organ factory in the US, to do an extensive on-site analysis of the organ. Their report, which is available on request, includes a detailed analysis of the deteriorated state of this magnificent instrument and outlines an extensive restoration. When complete, the restoration will result in a vastly improved, and in many ways, simpler instrument that will be both reliable and sustainable for generations to come. Restoring an organ of this size is a monumental project. Finding a way to do it without taking the organ out of service has been a huge challenge. Schoenstein & Co. proposes a phased approach that can result in a fully restored instrument in a year’s time, without a significant interruption of service. This would be achieved by first completing the Antiphonal Organ near the entrance to the Cathedral so services and weddings can continue while the main organ is being rebuilt. The entire cost of the restoration is estimated at $1.5M.
I ask you to consider how you can personally invest in the community effort to restore this priceless organ and all that it makes possible. A member of our Organ Restoration Committee will be pleased to discuss how you can be part of this historic restoration. Please feel free to contact John Renke at 808-330-3157 or firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
John R. Renke The Very Rev. Walter B. A. Brownridge
Organist & Director of Music Dean