Liturgical musicians should animate the assembly’s song, not replace it

Liturgical musicians should be “animators of the song of the whole assembly,” not replace it, says Pope Francis.

Speaking at the weekend’s international meeting of choirs in Rome on “Music in the Liturgy and in the Catechesis for the New Evangelisation,” Francis said liturgical and sacred music can be a powerful instrument of evangelisation.

This is because it gives people a glimpse of the beauty of heaven, he told the over 8,000 singers and musicians from around the world at the meeting.

“Your music and your song are a true instrument of evangelisation insofar as you witness to the profoundness of the Word of God that touches the hearts of people, and allow a celebration of the sacraments, especially of the Holy Eucharist, which makes one sense the beauty of Paradise.

“Never stop this commitment [to music] … in moments of joy and sadness, the Church is called to always be close to people, to offer them the company of faith.”

Francis told those at the meeting music has the ability to make a deep impression on moments in people’s lives, preserving them “as a precious memory that has marked their existence.”

Others attending the meeting included Monsignor Marco Frisina who moderated the gathering.

On Saturday evening Frisina conducted the Choir of the Diocese of Rome, of which he is Director, along with a seven thousand strong polyphonic choir and orchestra.

The concert, which also featured the most representative songs of the sacred and liturgical tradition, was dedicated to St. Cecilia who is the patron saint of music.


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