ChoristersA lot of Catholics complain about the music at their parish. The congregational singing is weak and half hearted, the choir members are trying hard, but they lack real training. Often the music choices are contemporary, drab, sentimental words with equally weak music.

It’s not easy to change a musical tradition–especially when the music in the American Catholic Church took such a drastic wrong turn fifty years ago. However things can be changed. Brick by brick something new can be built.

One of the ways to improve the music now and for the future is to teach the children to sing and to teach them good hymns. They have not been conditioned to like bad church music, so you can start from scratch.

Therefore, when I came to the parish of Our Lady of the Rosary one of the things I started immediately was a choral scholar program. I got this idea from some of the historic schools in England. The idea is that the church offers partial scholarships to students at our parish school. For the scholarship money they sing in the church choir. We now have about twelve choral scholars who are learning to sing, learning good music and learning the basics of solid liturgy and beautiful worship.

This year we are also going to start a weekly hymn singing session in the church with all the school children. That way they will learn to sing well and they will learn a repertoire of good hymns which we will then sing at the school Mass. When they have a “class Mass” on a Sunday they will sing their hymns and the grown ups will learn them too.

One of the keystones to having good church music and a good choir is having a good organ to lead the sacred worship. In our new church we’re going to have a pipe organ. We’ve salvaged it from a church congregation that closed. It’s not a huge instrument, but its just right for the size of our new church.

We’ve managed to finance it through our existing fund raising and financial program, but for it to work we need to build an organ chamber which will cost $40,000

Will you help? We’ve launched an online appeal to bring in the funds we need and we’ve already raised over $26,000.

To see (and listen) to the organ we’re going to install you can watch the video here on our webpage. At the bottom of the webpage is a button to make a PayPal donation.

We need lots of small donations, but we need some large ones too.

Therefore, for a gift of $1,000 or more we’re giving people the opportunity to give a gift in memory or in honor of a loved one. These names will be inscribed on a plaque to be placed on the side of the organ console, and the names will be recorded in our book of memories to be prayed for at Mass.

If you would like to make a donation, but don’t want to use PayPal, there is an address at the bottom of the page to which you can send a check.

If you want to make a memorial please include the  names in a note on the PayPal payment form or write to us at the parish address.

Go here to learn more.