The Scottish Churchman – May 1937

The May edition of the Scottish Churchman is full of news about the Coronation of King George VI with Queen Elizabeth.  There is a long article about the meaning behind the symbols used in the coronation, and ‘the Scottish Bishops have sanctioned the use in whole or in part of the services commended by the English Archbishops for Sunday, May 2, and Coronation Day. But they hope that in all our churches Holy Communion will be celebrated on the morning of May 12, as a solemn act of intercession for the King and the Queen Consort.’

There is also a wee snippet telling us that ‘At the Coronation, choristers from each of the Anglican Provinces – Canterbury, York, Scotland, Ireland, Wales – are to assist in the music. Those from Scotland are two boys from St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh, Robert Kidd and Christopher Anderson. They will be under the care of the Rev W P Shannon, second chaplain at the Cathedral, who is to sing in the special choir.’  I’m sure I’ve met Bob Kidd, one of those children, and I think he was the organist at St John’s Princes Street.

And did you know…?  ‘Scottish Churchpeople have a special interest in Her Majesty the Queen, for she was prepared for confirmation by one of our clergy, and was confirmed in the church of St John’s Forfar.’

And finally… ‘The British Broadcasting Corporation have sent us a list of their religious services during May, pamphlets on Broadcast Talks and Music Programmes for the ensuing months, and the Service in Preparation for the Coronation, to be broadcast on May 9, at 8pm. The last can be had for 3d, or, post free, 4d, from the BBC Publications’ Department. It is very nicely got up.’

Oh that there was enough religion on the BBC today to merit its own pamphlet!  And I wonder what merited it being called ‘nicely got up’? Love it!

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7 thoughts on “The Scottish Churchman – May 1937

  1. Was the Rev W P Shannon the same Paddy Shannon who occasionally officiated at Holy Trinity Dunoon in the 70s, I wonder? He had pronounced views on the singing of Merbecke, and said our choir (not, at that time, run by Mr B) was too heavy-handed with it.

  2. According to Bertie he went from the Cathedral in Edinburgh to Haddington, then Elgin, then Provost in Aberdeen before moving down south in 1965. He’s the only William Patrick Shannon there is so I guess he must have been but no idea what he was doing on Dunoon. Retired there perhaps?

  3. Yes I think that is the same Bob Kidd. My old organ teacher and choirmaster also sang at the coronation as one of the choristers of the Abbey.

  4. Paddy Shannon was organist in the 1920s at the church where I minister, St Ninian’s, Pollokshields, Glasgow, and is still remembered by a few of our older members. He is the composer of a ‘Russian’-style setting of the liturgy, from which the Lord’s Prayer is still sung frequently by choirs. Unfortunately, he seems not to have copyrighted the music, so his authorship is never acknowledged. I’m sure his reward is great somewhere.

  5. Hmm, I’ve seen that Lord’s Prayer attributed to Rimsky Korsokov so perhaps that’s why Paddy didn’t copyright it! Perhaps he ‘adapted’ it.

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