Dr. Jonathan Wessler is the Minister of Music at First Lutheran Church of Boston, putting in many hours behind-the-scenes to make sure our services and concert series are a feast for the ears and uplifting to the soul. He has a talented wife, Joy (in the photo turning pages for his prelude on Sunday, and frequently found anchoring the alto section in the choir), and two school age children. His tasks are many – planning service music according to the liturgical calendar, planning and organizing our concert series and Bach Vespers services, conducting the choir – but he still finds time to add other accomplishments to his slate.
The most recent of these was the first annual Boston Bach International Organ competition, held September 2-9, 2018. The sixteen competitors came from across Europe, Asia, and the USA, with Adriaan Hoek of Holland taking the first place prize. In the meantime, Dr. Wessler has recently completed the LCMS colloquy process so that he will be eligible to become a called minister of the church. With his self-effacing manner and quiet enthusiasm, many may not realize how busy he has been in his two years at First Lutheran Church.
Dr. Wessler maintains a constant balancing act when selecting music for services – encouraging congregational and children’s participation in singing and instrumental music, emphasizing Lutheran theology and liturgy, while maintaining excellent musical standards. This summer he used the opportunity presented by our single service schedule to put together an informal, open-to-all summer choir. Children and adults who would usually be busy with Sunday school during choir rehearsal could simply show up 45 minutes early to learn a simple piece and sing in the choir that day. Now that fall is here, all are welcome to join the choir at rehearsals between Sunday services, starting at 10am. Dr. Wessler’s previous post at St. Paul’s included conducting the boys’ choir – if he can make a bunch of 10-year-old boys sound like angels, he can work with you, too!