On June 28 St. John’s bid a fond farewell to our director of music for the last 15 years, Joyce Larson.   Not only did many in the congregation come to the celebration but so too did members of the neighborhood and community at large. A handful of St. John’s Music Series Oratorio Chorus members who’s only connection to St. John’s is this music series also spoke and gave their thanks to Joyce for her ministry.

May 13, 2015

Dear Members of St. John’s,

This letter is to inform you that I will be retiring on June 30. I have had 15 wonderful years serving as your Music Director, but it’s time to move on. I am so grateful to you for giving me the opportunity to serve you and for supporting me every step of the way.

I am happy to have been here during the transition since Pastor Hallonquist’s retirement. I enjoyed working with  Interim Pastors Mark Bents and Gordon Braatz, and I have especially enjoyed working with Pastor Tiede this past year.

During a recent meeting with Pastor Tiede and Peder Flaten, I boldly announced that St. John’s needs a new Music Director! Since thoughts of retirement were occurring more and more often, I, with the help of Pastor Tiede and my family, concluded that the end of June would be the appropriate time. I was, however, a little reluctant to leave without bringing closure to my years of conducting Messiah. I’m happy to say that I have been given the opportunity to do so this coming December as a guest conductor.

I truly believe that you, as a congregation, are poised to move forward in your mission and the time is right for a new Music Director to join you and Pastor Tiede in that endeavor. While it will be sad to leave, I look forward to having more time to travel and do other things that Merwyn and I have been looking forward to since his retirement two and a half years ago.

As you make the transition, may you be showered with God’s richest blessings.

Joyce Larson
Music Director 2000-2015