Dear Brothers and Sisters,

You have heard me say, “Beauty is the language of worship”. This is because God is the author of all that is beautiful, good and true, and when we apprehend beauty, our hearts and minds open to the beauty, truth and goodness of God.

This is why we have taken the time, the trouble and the expense of building a beautiful church building in which to worship. The impact of sacred beauty in our lives and in the lives of our children is deep and powerful. I believe as we experience beauty in our worship it overflows into our lives as we create beautiful homes, beautiful gardens and lives that are beautiful with virtue and families that are beautiful in love.

Our church building is beautiful to be sure, but our worship can also be further beautified if we put in some extra effort. I’m referring to our music ministry. During the COVID pandemic choir practices had to be suspended, but now that the shadow of COVID is lifting we need to put some extra resources and effort into our music at Mass.

In the weeks and months ahead, we will be building up our choirs. The girls’ choir has done a great job taking us through the pandemic and last Sunday at the 10:30 Mass we had a volunteer choir singing for Corpus Christi. Our organist, Mr. Alan Montgomery will be working with Mr. Curtin our school headmaster to get a choir like that together for the 10:30 Mass on the first Sunday of the month. So that members do not have to return to campus for a choir practice mid week, the plan is to meet in Guadalupe Hall at 9:00 am on that Sunday to practice the music for the 10:30am Mass. To make this work, Mr. Montgomery needs volunteers who are experienced and have a basic ability to read music, even if they are not extremely accomplished. As we develop the necessary singers, we would like them to supplement the girls’ choir and to help provide music at the two weekend evening masses.

In addition to the Corpus Christi Choir, which will sing on the first Sunday of the month, we are also happy to announce the development of the OLR Schola Cantorum, which will sing for the remaining Sundays, alongside the Girls’ Schola. Starting in September, the Schola Cantorum will be open to men of the parish who can read music. Repertoire will be drawn from the centuries of Catholic tradition and will include Gregorian chant, Renaissance polyphony, Romantic mass settings, and more. This will be a wonderful opportunity to sing some of the finest music of our tradition.  If interested, please contact Mr. Montgomery for an informal chat.

As school returns in the fall, Mr. Curtin is dedicating the 2021-22 school year to making our school the best Catholic singing school in the upstate. With his first degree in music composition from Notre Dame, Mr. Curtin is just the man to help develop an excellent children’s choir to improve our music program. The children’s choir members will be drawn from our school student body, but I’m sure if your children are home schooled or in other schools there will be a way for them to join in this effort too. Just let us know how you would like them to be involved.

If you can help with the growing adult choir, please take a moment after Mass to introduce yourself to Mr. Montgomery and give him your contact details. If you are an instrumentalist, we would also like to hear from you.

Your Pastor,

Fr. Longenecker