Aside from Metropolitan Jerome’s passion for the mission of Christ’s Church and his love of cooking, is… music! Throughout his life music has played an important role and this is just as true now as it ever was in his formative years. His Grace is fortunate to be able to employ his musical skills not just ecclesiastically i.e. through church music, etc and professionally ref the theatre but it is his particular delight now to combine music with his pastoral ministry.
Music therapy is the use of music to improve health or functional outcomes. Music therapy is a creative arts therapy, consisting of a process in which a music therapist uses music and all of its facets—physical, emotional, mental, social, aesthetic, and spiritual—to help clients improve their physical and mental health. Music therapists primarily help clients improve their health in several domains, such as cognitive functioning, motor skills, emotional development, communication, sensory, social skills, and quality of life by using both active and receptive music experiences such as improvisation, re-creation, composition, and listening and discussion of music to achieve treatment goals.
Receptive music therapy involves listening to recorded or live music and can improve mood, decrease stress, pain, anxiety level, and enhance relaxation. While it doesn’t affect disease, for instance it can help with coping skills. Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia are among the disorders most commonly treated with music therapy. Like many of the other disorders mentioned, some of the most common significant effects are seen in social behaviors, leading to improvements in interaction, conversation, and other such skills.
Metropolitan Jerome specialises in music therapy for groups, particularly for the elderly and for those with dementia, which has developed from his pastoral ministry to nursing and retirement homes. Music and emotion are linked in a powerful way. People respond to music from a very early age, before words and language are developed, and this continues even towards the end of our lives, when verbal abilities may be lost.
A particularly popular session His Grace delivers is titled “Name that tune” a concept developed from an old TV programme of the same name. He sings, plays or improvises well-known pieces of music from a variety of genres on piano/keyboard and patients are encouraged to literally “name that tune”! This stimulates memory and encourages listening and cognitive skills as well as social interaction as patients try to recall the names of artists and tunes and prompt each other’s memories. Group singing or “community singing” is another firm favourite with patient groups, where again cognitive stimulation and social interaction is encouraged.
If you or a nursing or retirement home you know in the Brighton area might be interested to book a music therapy session with “Fr Jerome” as he is known, please visit the Care Activities & Entertainment agency website here to check availability and to book.