By Rachel Elizabeth Cape

Parents’ Weekend 2013

October 1st, 2013 in Uncategorized

October 18-20, 2013

Parent’s Weekend is an opportunity for students to showcase to their families the host of events, programs, and experiences available in the Boston University community. This year, Marsh Chapel will once again offer a variety of events aimed at introducing parents to the life and ministry of the Chapel. The University’s complete list of Parents’ Weekend events and services is found online at


Friday, October 18


8:00PM, Marsh Chapel Nave

The Marsh Chapel Choir presents a concert of choral masterworks for All Saints’ Day. Also featured in this program is Mohammed Fairouz’s Anything Can Happen, a work commissioned by the Marsh Chapel Choir. Admission to the concert is free, but donations are welcomed.

Saturday, October 19


10:ooAM – noon, BU Beach

Join Dean Robert Allan Hill and Marsh Chapel student leaders for coffee and donuts on the BU Beach while we watch the Head of the Charles Regatta.


11:00AM, Marsh Chapel Nave

Br. Larry Whitney, University Chaplain for Community Life, and Rev. Dr. Robert Allan Hill, Dean of Marsh Chapel, lead a guided tour of the art and architecture of marsh Chapel as it relates to the history of Boston University.


12:30PM, Steps of Marsh Chapel

Rain Location: Marsh Chapel Nave

Sunday, October 20


11:00AM, Marsh Chapel Nave


12:00 noon, Barrister’s Hall, Boston University School of Law

All parents and students are welcome at this luncheon. Reservations are not required.

International Ministry Flier

September 3rd, 2013 in News



National Summer Preaching Series 2013

May 29th, 2013 in Uncategorized


Max Miller Memorial Service

April 25th, 2013 in Uncategorized

Dr. Max Miller, Remembered: Hosted by Marsh Chapel, we are joined by Boston’s chapter of the American Guild of Organists in celebrating ‘Uncle Max’s’ life of teaching and service at Boston University. The service will take place at Marsh Chapel, Boston University on Sunday, September 8th, 2013 at 3:00 in the afternoon. A reception will follow in Barrister’s Hall at the Law School with refreshment provided. Please save this date for what will certainly be an emotional and loving tribute to our beloved colleague. Gifts in Max’s memory may be made to the Organ Library.


Max Burdorf Miller (1927-2013)

Max Miller served on the faculties of the School of Music and the School of Theology at Boston University for forty-two yeas until his retirement in 1991.  He was simultaneously University Organist, Director of Music at Marsh Chapel, Director of the Master of Sacred Music program, conductor of the Seminary Singers, and Professor of Organ in the School of Music.  He took the Seminary Singers on tour every year, and one suspects that that participants could contribute many anecdotes about Max’s aplomb under the inevitably unpredictable vicissitudes of such an enterprise. (cont. below picture)



He taught organ not only to majors in that instrument but also to those studying within the MSM program.  For Max every student was his student, whether they could play the most difficult of Reger’s Phantasien or more modest repertoire.  He guided all of them to develop their musicality to the highest level possible.  Probably he did not often say to a student “don’t you think that’s too difficult for you.”  All of his students remember him with the greatest affection.

Max Miller began his study of the organ in his native California.  He must have been precocious player.  While studying Arnold Schoenberg’s difficult Variations on a Recitative, he received coaching from the composer.  (Max published a reminiscence of this encounter, a copy of which is kept the Arnold-Schoenberg-Archiv in Vienna.)  Max and his wife Betty lived in Vienna for several years, while Max studied with the eminent Austrian virtuoso, teacher, and composer, Anton Heiller.  Max received his Ph.D from Boston University and was a Fellow of the American Guild of Organsts.

Max was dedicated to his role as church musician.  He rehearsed the Chapel choir weekly and conducted every Sunday service.  There were special programs, to be sure, but the high quality of preparation and presentation—abetted by Max’s endearing personality—created a wonderful community.  Over the years, his Chapel assistants enjoyed a unique apprenticeship in how to run a choir rehearsal and in the fine art of service playing. For decades Max was in demand as a workshop presenter at organists’ conventions.

For many years he wrote an “Ask Uncle Max” column for The American Organist, the national publication of the American Guild of Organists.  His columns were always the perfect blend of erudition and good musical sense.  Over-specialization, however attractive it might be in today’s academe, did not appeal to Max.  His interests were very wide, encompassing theology, literature, and much else.

His knowledge of the organ repertoire was impressive, and he was the guiding spirit in the founding of The Organ Library, located in the School of Theology.  This has grown to be one of the largest collections of organ music in the world, accessible though a searchable database.  The Organ Library awards the biennial Max B. Miller prize to outstanding books devoted to organ literature and performance.

On the occasion of his seventieth birthday (October 21, 1997) a group of his students presented Max with an informal “Festschrift” as a testimony to their affection.  The contributions ranged from the scholarly to the whimsical (Max would have appreciated both!)  One of his students created a little “diploma” which concluded with the following ditty:

The organ’s firm foundation is not its reed or flutes;

It is our Max B. Miller, who makes the pipes all toot.

At Marsh he came to teach us.  The ciphers did relax.

We wish you joy and laughter.

Happy retirement, Max!

For more than four decades, Max Miller inspired so many at Boston University, not only with “joy and laughter” but also with musical artistry and erudition.  Requiescat in pace.

Help for Parents Caring for Children with Disabilities

April 24th, 2013 in Uncategorized

BU has launched a website to provide support for parents who are caring for children with disabilities. Read the BU Today article and find the link here:

Patriots’ Day 2013

April 16th, 2013 in Uncategorized

listen to the University Service of Healing after Patriots’ Day 2013

Dear Friends,

Grace to you and peace.  I bring you greetings from the leadership and community of Marsh Chapel, and three brief words in the wake of yesterday’s tragic events.

First, our thanks to you for your concern about us here, and members of the community.  Our annual brunch was joyfully and fully attended, with words from Lincoln, bagels and quiche, some Longfellow poetry, and the singing of ‘My Country ‘Tis of Thee’.   Then, the afternoon.  Several of our friends and families were close to the finish line near 3pm, but all have emerged (physically) unharmed.  Chapel staff provided hospitality (rest, refreshment, prayer, and counsel) to 120 or so who came in later Monday afternoon.  At this writing, we know of one BU student hurt, who is in now in stable condition.  We appreciate your contacts, your prayers, and your thoughts.  Our brunch and marathon watch will be held, with energy, again on Patriots’ Day next year.

Second, we encourage you to continue in ways many have already begun, to find effective modes of help for those well beyond our own community who have been hurt, one way or another.  A card, a note, a check, a gift, a prayer—we all have things we can do to lean forward and help those harmed.  One of our students is active in bringing a blood bank to campus in the next few days.  It is healthy and it is helpful, in many directions, to find one thing or two things creatively to do, to bring some good to bear in the face of this tragic violence.

Third, and most significantly, we will want to live with faith and courage in the days ahead.  The radiance of Easter is still with us, shadowed as it is by Monday’s unspeakable violence.  Thankfully, from Monday itself, we have examples of people modeling dimensions of healthy spirituality.  I will only write here of the runners and the race (a metaphor not unknown to the biblical mind by the way—Psalm 19, 1 Cor 9, Hebrews 12).   I picture all the runners practicing months and weeks.  I see the lacing of the running shoes.  I hear the starting whistle and the throng surging forward.  We saw at Kenmore Square, the brightly attired elderly man, the young guy with blue hair, the student running in a tuxedo, the troop from a nearby college ROTC program, the woman running—as so many—in memory, the folks in wheel chairs, the straining forward, by mile 25, of striving, disciplined energy.  They all are models for us of running the race and finishing the course. We can lace up and run, too, in our own ways.  God’s goodness, love and presence beckon us onward.

At 5:30pm tonight (Tuesday, 4/16/13), the university community will gather on Marsh Plaza for a vigil to remember and honor those hurt and killed on Patriots’ Day.  At 5:30pm tomorrow (Wednesday, 4/17/13) our community will gather for a formal service of ordered worship, in honor and memory, in the Marsh Chapel nave.  And of course we will be together for worship on Sunday (4/21/13) at 11am.  Please join us for one or more of these services.




Rev. Dr. Robert Allan Hill

Dean, Marsh Chapel

Professor, New Testament and Pastoral Theology

Chaplain to the University, Office of Religious Life

Boston University



April 14th, 2013 in Uncategorized

HANDEL Messiah, HWV 56

Saturday, April 20, 2013; 7:30 p.m.
Marsh Chapel Choir and Collegium
Admission: $10; no charge with any valid student ID

Easter Lilies

March 6th, 2013 in Uncategorized

To order a lily for Easter at Marsh Chapel, please fill out the form  below. Lilies will be displayed at the Chapel and available for pick up after the service on Easter morning.

Sorry. This form is no longer available.

Ash Wednesday Services

February 12th, 2013 in Uncategorized

Benjamin Britten 100th Anniversary Festival

January 28th, 2013 in Uncategorized

Performances of Benjamin Britten’s music are going on around the world as part of the centennial festival.

For more information on Benjamin Britten, his music, and upcoming performances in Boston or other areas, visit the 100th Anniversary website.

Dates marked with an asterisk (*) indicate worship services, and the works corresponding to those dates are performed in a religious setting. There is no admission charge for worship services at Marsh Chapel.

Scott Allen Jarrett, Conductor and Director of Music

*Sunday, January 27, 2013; 11:00 a.m.

BRITTEN Te Deum in C major
Sarah Moyer, soprano
Justin Thomas Blackwell, organ
Marsh Chapel Choir

Saturday, February 2, 2013; 8:00 p.m.

BRITTEN Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings, Op. 31
BRITTEN Simple Symphony, Op. 4
BRITTEN Nocturne, Op. 60
BRITTEN Now sleeps the crimson petal

Nicholas Phan, tenor
Clark Matthews, horn
Marsh Chapel Collegium

Admission: $10; no charge with any valid student ID

*Sunday, February 3, 2013; 11:00 a.m.

BRITTEN Prelude and Fugue on a theme of Vittoria
Justin Thomas Blackwell, organ

BRITTEN Festival Te Deum in E major, Op. 32
Carey Shunskis, soprano
Justin Thomas Blackwell, organ
Marsh Chapel Choir

*Sunday, February 17, 2013: 11:00 a.m.

BRITTEN Three Organ Works
Voluntary on “Tallis’ Lamentation”
Prelude to “They walk alone”
Village organist’s piece
Justin Thomas Blackwell, organ

BRITTEN Canticle II: Abraham and Isaac, Op. 51
Douglas Dodson, countertenor
Patrick T. Waters, tenor
Justin Thomas Blackwell, piano

Friday, March 1, 2013; 8:00 p.m.

BRITTEN Variations on a theme of Frank Bridge, Op. 10
Marsh Chapel Collegium

JS BACH Du sollt Gott, deinen Herren, lieben, BWV 77
Margot Rood, soprano
Emily Marvosh, alto
Patrick T. Waters, tenor
Graham T. Wright, bass

BRITTEN Cantata misericordium, Op. 69
Andrew Shryock, tenor
Baritone soloist TBA
Marsh Chapel Choir and Collegium

Admission: $10; no charge with any valid student ID

*Sunday, March 3, 2013: 11:00 a.m.

BRITTEN Jubilate Deo in C
Justin Thomas Blackwell, organ
Marsh Chapel Choir
Thurman Choir