“Make a joyful
sound unto the Lord,
all ye lands, serve the Lord with gladness,
come before His Presence with singing. . .” Psalm 100
Choir Directors, Matushka Eugenia, Michael, and Theodora
singers of the choir of the Orthodox Christian Church of Christ
the Saviour take to heart the Lord’s mandate to use their talents
for the glory of God. The choir’s responsibility is great: to lead
the assembly in liturgy, offering adoration and supplication; praise
and petition. Every Orthodox service includes singing, whether
melodies are sung by a group of singers or one person reads a psalm.
When we make our offerings of song to God in corporate worship
we enter the ancient tradition of the early Christian and pre-Christian
church. We recall and reenact the songs of the Hebrew people who
crossed the Red Sea, “For He has been greatly glorified;” of the
three faithful young men in the furnace “Praise the Lord! Sing
and exalt Him throughout all ages;” and of our Lord and His Apostles,
who "sang a hymn and went to the Mount of Olives" before
His passion (Matthew 26:30, NIV).
our current practice, on Holy Tuesday, when we go with Christ to
participate liturgically and spiritually in the acts of His
passion, the assembled people of God sing this hymn, found in
Holy Tuesday Matins:
Come, O faithful, let us work zealously for the Master,
for He distributes wealth to his servants.
Let each of us, according to his or her ability increase the
talent of grace:
let one be adorned in wisdom through good works;
let another celebrate a service in splendor.
The one distributes his wealth to the poor;
the other communicates the word to those untaught.
Thus we shall increase what has been entrusted to us,
and, as faithful stewards of grace, we shall be accounted worthy
of the Master's joy. Make us worthy of this, Christ our God,
in Thy love for mankind.
— The Bridegroom Services of Holy Week, Department of Religious
At the climax of our yearly worship cycle, we hear this important
call to engage in Christian ministries. In our parish's fifty-year
history, God has blessed us with so many individuals who
have performed these sacred actions to the benefit of our community
and to the
church as a whole, often excelling in more than one of the
holy tasks enumerated above. These have been clergy and laypersons.
They have been laborers who fell asleep in the Lord decades
and those who continue their service today. Some were known
to all, some were known to a few, and there were some whose
were known only to God. By the grace of God, among our choir
singers and leaders were those called to various other vocations
church: clergy, teachers at all levels, workers of charity.
Always, among all vocations and activities, liturgy remains
at the center
of our Christian life, and liturgical music is central to
As all Christians belong to God and are members of God’s
royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9), all are also members of God’s
choir. Our prayer, set forth as incense before God in this
holy year, is that he will strengthen us as Christians: in
and worship, in good works and charity, in liturgy and music.
--Michael A. Ciavaglia
sing unto the Lord a new song; I will sing
praises to him as long as I live! ” (Psalms 149/143)
In celebrating the 50th Anniversary of our Parish I am the
only Nehrebecki child who has had the privilege of being
member of Christ the Saviour Church. As the youngest
of the six, I was born and baptized in Paramus; in fact,
place in the “Legion Hut.” So it is with great humility
that I recently
accepted the position of choir director.
It is awe-inspiring to follow Professor David Drillock,
+Father Nicholas Solak, +Father Michael Irwin, Father
Father Paul Kucynda, Matushka Eugenia Nehrebecki, and
our own Michael Ciavaglia.
Our choir has made a recording every five years for the
past forty years. Nine recordings is quite an accomplishment
Matushka Eugenia for instituting this practice. I pray
that we can continue with this tradition and the more
introduced by Michael Ciavaglia. Although they have both
left a legacy that will be difficult to follow, I pray
me along the same path they have so devoutly paved.
Above all else, only with the joined efforts of the choir
members at Christ the Saviour can we continue to joyously
to our Lord surrounded in our beautiful church by the
company of His Saints. May He Bless us to do so!
the Lord for He is good; It is delightful to sing psalms to
His Name! ” (Psalm 134)
— Theodora Gramkow
Scroll the playlist at
the right of the player and click on a
Title to listen to.
Use the controls to pause the track
or advance/return to another
If you want to order a CD of
our Choir's music, use the buttons at the bottom of this page.