On Saturday, we said a final goodbye to our friend Jim Shultz. Jim first came to Trinity Cathedral in 2001, and shortly after introduced himself to me. He had taken organ lessons with Edgar Billups at St Paul’s Cathedral in San Diego in the past, and was interested in having organ lessons with me.
Jim was an excellent student… he actually practiced between lessons, and came prepared (those of you who are music teachers understand how exciting this is). He became so skilled, that he was a regular substitute for me at the Cathedral, and at many other churches around Sacramento. At my urging he joined the Sacramento Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, and was an active board member, and editor of the chapter newsletter for many years.
Jim was also very supportive of our Cathedral Music Program. Even after he was diagnosed with Appendiceal cancer, he attended concerts and Evensong whenever he could.
For several years, we’ve had bats roosting in the apex of the roof at the North end of the Cathedral. Under that apex sits the organ’s en-chamade “Imperial Trumpet” stop. Where there are bats, so will be bat guano, and that guano caused some damage, and several notes in the trumpet wouldn’t play. I had gotten a estimate of $6,000 to do the repair work, to make it like new. During my sabbatical in 2010, Jim, in his own quiet way, went out and raised the money to get the work done. When I arrived back from sabbatical, he told me, “there should be six-thousand dollars in the bank now, to get the work done on the trumpet.” A couple of years ago, when we first started talking about doing a major renovation of the Cathedral organ, Jim was the first to make a very generous donation to the fund. That was before there even was a “fund!”
Jim was diagnosed with cancer about three years ago. He underwent several surgeries and rounds of chemotherapy to battle the cancer. One of the side effects of the chemo was neuropathy in his hands and feet, making it very difficult for him to play the organ and piano. This was a great frustration for him to be unable to play the music he loved. Despite it all, his gentle positive spirit always shone through, during the good and the bad.
About a year ago, we had a conversation about the music for his memorial service. He had very specific desires for the music, and left copious notes regarding the service. At the bottom of this blog, you can see the entire order of music for his memorial service.
Jim went into the ER on Saturday, October 4th, and died early the next morning. Though we all knew this was coming some day, we weren’t quite ready for it yet. Now that he is gone from our sight, it seems like there are some notes missing from our song. But now, in the nearer presence of God, I am confident that he is experiencing a music which is unlike anything any of us can ever imagine. And he can’t wait to share it with us.
Music for Jim Shultz Memorial Service, October 11, 2014:
- Setting: Missa Brevis Sancti Joannes de Deo – Franz Joseph Haydn
- Organ Voluntaries: Schmücke dich, O Liebe Seele – Johann Sebastian Bach; Adagio in g minor – Tomaso Albinoni, realized by Remo Giazotto; Prelude & Fugue in f minor (BWV 534) – Johann Sebastian Bach
- Hymns: “O Praise ye the Lord” (Laudate Dominum); “Abide with me” (Eventide); When in our music, God is Glorified (Engelberg)
- Psalm 23 (Simplified Anglican chant); Celtic Alleluia – Fintan O’ Carrol and Christopher Walker
- Offertory Motet: “Ave Verum Corpus” Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
The Trinity Cathedral Choir, Canon David Link, Director of Music/organist & choirmaster; Dr Ryan Enright, assisting organist; Victoria Tognozzi and Cindy Lee, violinists; Leo Graven, cellist. The Reverend Canon Lynell Walker, celebrant and homilist; the Very Reverend Dr Brian Baker, officiant.