Y NAME IS BENJAMIN, and I’m a professional musician with a B.A. in Music Performance from the University of New Hampshire. I have served at a parish in New Hampshire for 10 years. I am now the Cathedral Organist & Choirmaster as well as the Diocesan Director of Sacred Music for the Diocese of Marquette, Michigan. I attended the Sacred Music Symposium 2022 … and was absolutely blown away.
What is it? All week long we took part in impressive educational talks, lectures, hands-on classes, rehearsals, etc. all relating to various aspects of the wealth of Catholic Sacred Music—be it Gregorian chant notation and style, pipe organ technique, improvisation, choral conducting technique, theology/philosophy behind liturgical music, practical tips for the professional church musician working with volunteers, and plenty of hands on experience rehearsing music you actually sing with others for Vespers and Mass during the week.
The culmination? Culminating in a glorious High Mass (at the end of the week), what we were able to experience as part of the choir providing the music for that liturgy was supremely beautiful, reverent, angelic, and prayerful. Truly a “taste of heaven,” to be honest. Every aspect of the liturgy lifted your mind and heart to God the Father, Creator of the universe, and His Son, Jesus Christ, who is our majestic King of Kings. This felt like what Mass was truly meant to be.
For whom? Whether coming from a liturgical background in the Ordinary Form or the Extraordinary Form, this Symposium helped “cover all the bases,” providing extremely helpful training that would apply to both forms in a mutually enriching educational process. I would HIGHLY recommend the Sacred Music Symposium to Catholic clergy, choir directors, organists, church accompanists, church choir members, and church cantors.