ELIZABETH ANN SETON SCHOLA MUSICORUM
“Singing is for the one who loves.”
(St. Augustine, Sermo 336)
“When so rich a harvest is before us, why do we not gather it?
All is in our hands if we will but use it.” (St. Elizabeth Ann Seton)
“I will sing with the spirit and I will sing with the mind also.”
(1 Corinthians 14:15)
The St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Schola Musicorum is a “school of music” preparing children for music ministry and life-long praise of God. Under the guidance of our patroness St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, who was an avid pianist, composer, and lover of music, as well as an educator, we allow children to experience the joy of music in the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church. Created in the image of God, all children have the potential to discover their God-given voices, leading to a life of experiencing beauty.
Beginning in 2016, all students enrolled at the parish school receive regular musical training as part of the curriculum. Numerous recent studies have shown the beneficial effect that music study has on students’ general academic achievement. The ancient Greeks realized its intellectual importance, considering music secondary only to the study of theology and philosophy. The Roman Catholic Church has a tradition of “singing schools” that is as old as the system of Western education itself, and choirs as we know them owe their very existence to the Roman Catholic Church. The Second Vatican Council affirmed the important role of choirs in the Mass, and encouraged the sustenance and development of “schools of singing.” Every child has the potential to use their God-given voice to the best of their ability. In addition, through the rehearsal and performance process, students grow more confident in their abilities, in their academic work, and in their social interactions, becoming well-formed and responsible adults who contribute to society. All students from Grades 4 and above will be part of a choir, and these choirs will be responsible for providing the music ministry of the regular school Masses. Grades Pre-K through 3 will have regular music training, allowing them to discover the innate joy of making music, and enabling them to find their God-given voices, preparing them for future choral service. A parent who actively supports and encourages a child’s development through music ministry is practicing good stewardship of the child’s developing spirit and soul, gifts from God that must be nurtured, cared for, and cultivated.
The Schola Cantorum is a newly established choir for children in Grades 4-8, intended for children who desire to further their commitment and love through a regular ensemble with a higher expectation. In conjunction with adults, this choir will serve the 10:30 Sunday Mass, singing music from the great heritage of Roman Catholic music, as well as fine modern compositions. A voice trial is necessary to join this choir; to schedule this, please contact Dr. Douglas O’Neill at firstname.lastname@example.org . This choir is open to all area children, regardless of school or faith affiliation.
Rehearsals: Wednesday, 3:45-5:00, and on Sunday mornings at 9:00
Private lessons in piano and organ will be offered during after-school hours at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton School, for a nominal fee. Piano will be offered to students in Grades K and above. At least five years of piano study is recommended as a prerequisite for children interested in organ lessons.
Dr. Douglas O’Neill, Director of Music at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton School, is a skilled and dedicated choral director, and is committed to the crucial need to educate our children. An accomplished keyboard player as well, he has received numerous accolades, including First Prize at the Dublin International Organ Competition. His experience includes working at the Cathedral of the Madeleine and Madeleine Choir School in Salt Lake City, the only full-time co-educational Catholic choir school in North America.
Vide, ut quod ore cantas, corde credas, et quod corde credis, operibus comprobes.
“See that what you sing with your lips you may believe in your heart, and that what you believe in your heart you may show forth in your works.”
(Blessing of Cantors, from the 10th Canon of the Council of Carthage, c. 398 A.D.)