“They shared my idea to bring this big, big instrument back to life…they rescued this instrument. It would have been vandalized or scrapped for metal. Now, it’s playing in a vibrant church.”
Stephen Beddia, Sept. 2011
Our Lady of Sorrows is blessed to have one of the largest and most impressive pipe organ in Atlantic County. The organ was built in 1952 around an original Aeolian Skinner console dating back to 1932. It is composed of 56 ranks of 3,000 different size pipes, and controlled by four, 32-note pedal boards. Each pipe “division” (“pedal,” “swell,” “solo,” “positiv,” and “great”) has distinct resonance, pitch, and character. Feeding these pipes is air coming from two huge blowers.
The credit for bringing the pipe organ to Our Lady of Sorrows goes to Stephen Beddia; the music and the choir director, and the whole crew of volunteers. The organ was relocated in its entirety from Philadelphia, where it previously served the Messiah Lutheran Church. The task of restoring and reassembling of all those intricate, decades-old pieces, one by one was enormous. It took a great amount of effort, passion, and perseverance.
“There are thousands of pieces that go into a pipe organ … All the operating pipes had to be completely rebuilt and rewired. Inside the wind chest, all the leather valves that operate the pipes — controlled by the console over here — we’ve had to re-leather every one.”
Stephen Beddia, Sep 2011
Today, the pipe organ is used weekly to support singing in worship and sensitively accompany choral ensembles and vocalists. The beautiful pipe organ’s music helps bring our faith nearer to God.
Please see the links below to read more about this remarkable story:
Our Lady Of Sorrows pipe organ – performance by Stephen Beddia, Jun 2015
Stephen Beddia’s daughter, Ms. Kimberley M. Peschi is also helping Our Lady Of Sorrows by sharing her beautiful voice as a the Mass Cantor (Leader of Song).
She is a professional soloist, and a voice teacher.