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Pastor's Peace - June Issue 2022

by Amy Bellisano on May 25, 2022

Brenda Arnold Day, Minister of Music, First Presbyterian Church of Metuchen

Retirement Celebration – WELL DONE – 1983 to 2022

Brenda Arnold Day joined the staff at the First Presbyterian Church of Metuchen in 1983. Over the years it became evident that she is more than an accomplished musician and teacher:  Brenda is indeed a Minister of Music who has nurtured, mentored, tutored, and encouraged adults and children alike through her ministry.  Every hymn, every anthem, every piece has its purpose and Brenda has always been very deliberate in the connection of the musical selections to the message of the service.  Over the years, Brenda has encouraged more than a thousand musicians and has opened the magic of faith through music to many more.  During her tenure, she has shepherded the church through many pastoral transitions and the congregation always felt secure knowing Brenda Day was there guiding (and sometimes prodding). 

The congregation and the wider Metuchen/Edison community have enjoyed countless musical programs organized by Brenda and her extensive network of professional musicians:  the brass on Easter, the harp at Christmas, guest soloists, bell concerts, the Lenten Concert series, the summer worship programs and even a bag pipe here and there!  As soon as Brenda learned of a musical talent, that person would be tapped for worship! 

A graduate of Westminster Choir College, Brenda has created a music program steeped in the very traditional style we have all come to love; however, she has also embraced different styles of worship music bringing in musicians, instruments and genres of all types (unfortunately, despite many efforts, the Senior Choir is still not capable of swaying when singing!). Brenda has led Senior Choir trips to Canada, Pennsylvania Dutch “Country”, Eastern Europe and the U.K. These trips were amazing experiences for those who attended and helped bring God’s love beyond our church. 

Brenda has always had a unique ability to nurture young musicians and then keep them involved in our music ministry through high school and beyond.  Her involvement in Vacation Bible School has helped to create a rich experience for hundreds of children. Throughout her career, Brenda has encouraged young musicians with piano and organ lessons and several of our youth have gone on to careers in church music and music therapy thanks to Brenda’s encouragement and mentorship. Evidence of Brenda’s impact on our youth is seen in our Youth Sundays where Brenda helps guide the youth leaders on hymns and musical selections. The richness of these services fills our souls.

In addition to the gift of music Brenda has brought to our church, her ministry has also included visitations and phone calls to those in need of support, kindness or sympathy. This portion of her ministry has provided support to the pastoral team at the Church, and she has often served as a critical liaison for those suffering from physical or mental afflictions.  Brenda has been there for Births, Baptisms, Confirmation, Weddings, Illness, Funerals…nurturing our congregation through the critical moments in life.

As Brenda retires, it is fitting that we celebrate her legacy at First Presbyterian Church of Metuchen. We will miss her immensely but will cherish what she has left for us. Brenda’s exceptional ability to motivate, lead, organize, nurture and guide has been a gift that we will treasure.

We also give thanks for Brenda’s family:  Charlie (husband), Jonathan (Son), Elisa (daughter) and Cadence (granddaughter) for the nearly 40 years of dedication to the congregation of our church.  Holidays, vacations and often personal plans have taken a back seat to the needs of the church and we recognize that Brenda’s dedication to our church has been a family affair.

Please join us in worship on June 12 and at the reception afterwards at the Social Center to give thanks for a job well done.  Brenda Arnold Day, your legacy will live on in the hearts of all of those whose lives you have touched.  Blessings to you for much happiness in your well deserved retirement.


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