The Cathedral Music Program is designed to support the cathedral in the performance of its traditional hymns and musical choices, as well as to raise their minds and hearts through the meaningful celebration of sound that belongs to the Catholic Church. All cathedrals have an ongoing commitment to modelingolic and sacramental ceremonies for not only their individual parishes, but also for the entire community as a whole. Their music programs are essential to this process of sacramental worship. These programs are created to meet the needs of these important aspects of faith and worship. They are created to assist the people in leading a walk in solidarity with the Catholic religion and the Catholic faith. It is their desire to see the unity of all believers in the grace of Christ.
For over five centuries, cathedral music has provided sanctuary for composers, church organists and church organs. This type of worship requires a diverse range of talents coming from many different cultures and ethnic groups, each striving to find a voice and instrument that belong to them. It takes talent to create music that soothes the soul and inspires the heart and mind of believers. It takes passion to create music that reaches down into the soul of every believer.
As part of their obligations, cathedral services are held at certain times of the year, namely, Christmas, Easter, Memorial and Halloween. Cathedral choirs, under the direction of an acolyte or bishop, organize these special events and activities to celebrate the day and build unity within the community. New cathedral music composers and singers are welcomed to contribute to these celebrations. While some choirs and churches continue to conduct regular church services, others have incorporated a new way of worship and praise.
In many of these churches, cathedral services, which are held during the weekdays and in the evening, are now incorporating traditional choir activities into the programs. In fact, many contemporary artists are now lending their talents to these programs. Many of these contemporary artists are not originally from this realm of faith, but instead developed a love of music and its variety. They are making a commitment to the art of song and the important role the choir plays in both our worship and community life.
The cathedral music choir is an integral part of cathedral services, especially during the seasonal holiday season. Music plays such an important part in the faith and culture of our communities. It is important to remember, however, that today’s modern worship spaces are often smaller than traditional, more enclosed spaces.
This means that cathedral choirs must work harder than ever to set an atmosphere that will inspire both worship and prayer. It is important to remember that the tradition of cathedral music dates back centuries and that it was created to celebrate God and the love that he has for his people. We are also urged to consider that the vast majority of instrumental or ‘instrumental’ music is performed by a group of men. Most choral hymns are also sung by men. As a result, these musicians often go unrecognized and are not included in formal church programs.
Contemporary cathedral choirs and their talent are often overlooked in discussions of contemporary liturgy. The musical repertoire of these talented men and women is not necessarily considered as part of the liturgical program. This oversight is problematic. If contemporary liturgy is to truly engage the members of the community, every part of the community must be included in its preparations – from its preparations on the steps of a church to its collections for Christmas and Easter.
There is much evidence that contemporary liturgies are profoundly meaningful to individuals and groups. cathedral choirs and their music must not be overlooked in any effort to engage communities in worship. They should be seen as part of the celebration of all that is holy in a cathedral.