I first learned about St. Peter’s jazz vespers service in September. Specifically, from this feature on Vincent Piazza, who starred in Boardwalk Empire as Lucky Luciano. Since then visiting St. Peter’s has been in my Todoist in the “new experiences” list.
Vespers means evening prayer. As a form of ritual prayer, it’s an ancient Christian practice. What I experienced was a very contemporary interpretation of vespers. St. Peter’s is in Midtown at 54th and Lexington. It’s a Lutheran parish that’s been doing “jazz vespers” for decades.
Although strange to hear, “a reading from C.S. Lewis” (rather than from Scripture) from what seemed to be a pulpit in a place that purports to be a church, it was a peaceful service that seemed to touch people. I recorded a few minutes to share: