Grace Church in the Mountains & Sean Coughlin receive 2024 AAM Brittenback-Meezan Award

Association of Anglican Musicians
Posted Apr 22, 2024

Sean Coughlin – Margeaux Boles Photography

The Association of Anglican Musicians is pleased to award the 2024 Brittenback-Meezan Presidential Award to Grace Church in the Mountains and their Music Director, Sean Coughlin. Intended as a resource for small- and mid-sized congregations in the Episcopal Church, the Brittenback-Meezan Presidential Award is an annual grant which demonstrates the value of continuing education as a means of enlivening worship and deepening Christian understanding through music.

In addition to attending the Annual Conference of the Association of Anglican Musicians in Minnesota (June 9-13), Mr. Coughlin plans to use the award to take organ lessons to develop greater facility with the breadth of the instrument as well as increase his familiarity with the Anglican musical tradition and Episcopal liturgy. He writes, “I am honored and extremely grateful to have been chosen for the Brittenback-Meezen Presidential Award from the Association of Anglican Musicians. As someone new to both the Episcopal Church and to the organ, I look forward to creating a strong musical foundation to build upon as I begin my pedagogical journey through private lessons. I know this award will help enrich worship for our parishioners as I learn the fine art of hymn playing and all things pertaining to both the organ and Anglican music.” The Rev’d Joslyn Ogden Schaefer, Rector of Grace Church in the Mountains adds, “I view this grant as a ‘God-wink.’ It was a leap of faith for Grace Church to hire a skilled musician who lacked organ experience nor had a background in Anglican music. But I knew Sean was eager to and capable of learning new things to serve the church. This grant will make his learning process deeper and broader. I view it as an investment in the future of our Anglican musical tradition…to the glory of God.”

This annual award is made possible by W. Michael Brittenback, in honor of his late husband, Bill Meezan. Michael writes, “I wanted to honor Bill for his unwavering support of me that allowed me, in midlife, to become a full-time Organist/Choirmaster. He encouraged me to give lessons to help musicians who were committed to learning how to play the organ for their small congregations, only asking them for what they could afford. This award is my way of thanking him for this.”