Sacred Music is an important component of our liturgies. It is connected with the liturgical action and adds depth to prayer and unity to the assembly. When done well, it has the ability to form the People of God more fully into communion with Him and with each other in Christ. (Sing to the Lord, USCCB, 2007). Our singing at liturgy can be considered “a foretaste of the heavenly liturgy in which the choirs of angels and saints unite in one unending song of love and praise.” (Pope Benedict, 2010).
The foremost choir of any liturgical celebration is the assembly gathered in the pews. The Apostle Paul spoke of “teaching and admonishing one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God” (Colossians 3:16). Documents of the Second Vatican Council emphasize the importance of the full and active participation by ALL of the people.
Leadership for the song of the people is provided by various members of our music ministry. We encourage members of the parish to consider joining one of the musical leadership activities. There are opportunities and needs in our music ministry for musicians of all ages and abilities, from the beginning novice to the trained professional. While the primary focus of our music ministers is on service at liturgies, most members find that they also glean personal benefits in the way of spiritual enrichment, growth in musical skills, a sense of purpose, and camaraderie with other musicians.
For more information on joining music ministry in any of the following opportunities, contact Kathy Borgen at 952-374-5042 or at email@example.com.
PARISH CHOIR: CHORALE and ENSEMBLE
Choirs not only lead the song of the assembly, but enrich the liturgical celebrations by adding harmonies, extended verses, sung dialogues, and specially prepared choral anthems learned during their rehearsals. Generally, the Chorale ministers at the Sunday 10:30 AM Mass and the Ensemble at the Saturday 5:15 PM Mass. There are exceptions to this when the two groups join for special parish liturgies, such as the Feast of St. Hubert, Christmas Eve, and Triduum. Rehearsals for this group are on Tuesday evenings from 7:00-8:45 PM. We sing music of many musical styles. We are in need of soprano, alto, tenor and bass voices. We welcome singers of a wide range of abilities. Although music reading is helpful, it is not necessary and can be learned through training provided during rehearsals.
This group is for children in grades three through eight. They lead the music at Mass approximately seven times between October and May, including Christmas Eve 4 PM Mass and Easter Sunday 11 AM Mass. They rehearse on Tuesday afternoons from 4:10-5:10 PM. Within the preparation of music for the upcoming liturgies, they learn about vocal technique, pitch accuracy, music reading, and music’s role in the liturgy. Middle school aged students are given chances for leadership in singing harmony within the group.
The Cherub Choir is for students in kindergarten through second grade. They sing for Mass on Christmas Eve at 4 PM and Easter morning at 11 AM. Rehearsals take place in the two weeks before each scheduled Mass time. Watch the bulletin and other media for announcements of exact times.
Cantors play an important leadership role both within any of the choirs and in the absence of a choir in leading the assembly’s song. They proclaim the responsorial psalm and Gospel acclamation, sing verses of other liturgical music in dialogue with the congregation, and generally provide encouragement for the assembly’s participation. Training is provided both in group settings and individually.
Junior Cantors are students middle-school age and older who are essentially “in-training” and sing at Mass with an experienced cantor. Students who wish to become cantors are encouraged to take part in the Children’s Choir. Training for cantors is provided during choir rehearsal and at individually scheduled times.
6 PM ENSEMBLE
Our Sunday 6 PM Mass incorporates Praise and Worship genre of music and utilizes a unique combination of vocalists and instrumentalists. Musicians high school age and older are encouraged to join this group. Lauren and Charlie Keyes are the directors.
We are blessed to have three octaves of Malmark handbells and a set of handchimes. We welcome both experienced and beginning ringers. Basic music reading skills are helpful for this group.
They rehearse on Monday evenings from 6:30-7:45 PM, and minister at various Masses approximately eight times from October through June. Our glorious sounds do much to enhance the sounds at liturgies. We are always welcoming new members!
Our brass ensemble consists of trumpets, French horns, baritones, trombones, and tuba. They greatly enhance the sound at liturgies approximately nine times between October and June. They also play at local community functions throughout the year. Brass players high school age and older are encouraged to join. Rehearsals are on Wednesday evenings at 7:30 PM, and the director is Wayne Schaffran.
We are in need of instrumentalists of many types to enhance and support our sung prayer. Schedules are flexible and varied. High school students and older with previous training on the instrument are encouraged to inquire about playing for Mass.
The organ and piano are foundations in the leadership of our liturgical song. Previous keyboard skill and an audition is required; liturgical training is provided.
This is a group of vocalists and instrumentalists who are willing to be contacted to minister when a funeral occurs. Although much of the membership is comprised of those involved in other groups of music ministry, it is not necessarily a requirement. Rehearsal for funerals occurs the day of the funeral up to an hour beforehand. Many of our musicians feel a special spiritual reward in offering this service to grieving families.