Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Last week at Mass you will have noticed a marked improvement in the sound system in our Upper Church.

Creating an effective sound system for a church like the new OLR is a complicated business. The plaster walls provide a “hard” acoustic. The sound bounces around and reverberates. This is good for music, but bad for the spoken word. Therefore, to balance this and create an environment that is good musically and for the spoken word is a real challenge.

When the church was built, we contracted with a first rate sound engineer whose advice was to mount large sound buffering panels to all the interior walls to deaden the acoustic, then to fill the “deadened” space with amplified “artificial” sound. The building committee vetoed this solution because the buffering panels were ugly and the natural sound of the music would be hindered.

The result was a “second best” acoustical solution. We have lived with this for six years and people have been very patient with the fact that our acoustics were less than best.

Last year one of our parishioners proposed a solution. He knew of a firm of acoustical engineers who specialize in our kind of problem: a big space with a hard acoustic. We contracted with them to come and assess the problem and propose a solution.

The results from worship last week were a resounding thumbs up from the congregation. I believe we have solved the problem!

The only downside is the cost. It was not cheap to install a new sound system. One family has already donated a large part of the cost. The remaining debt on this work is $45,000.

If you like the new sound system would you consider making a special gift to OLR to help us with the cost? You can do this by making a single new, designated donation or if you wish to make a pledge for a monthly designated gift you may do so. If the Lord leads you to help in this way, please be in touch with Fr. Richard at the parish office before the end of February so we can plan the expenditure.

Your pastor,
Fr. Longenecker