St. Catharine’s Music Ministry
“The primary role of music in the Liturgy is to help the members of the gathered assembly to join themselves with the actions of Christ and give voice to the gift of faith.” (Sing to the Lord: Music in Divine Worship; USCCB, 2007.) “The Christian faithful who come together as one in expectation of the Lord’s coming are instructed by the Apostle Paul to sing together Psalms, hymns, and spiritual canticles (Col 3:16). Great importance should therefore be attached to the use of singing in the celebration of the Mass.” (General Instruction of the Roman Missal; USCCB, 2011.) The primary role of all music ministers is to lead the musical participation of those assembled for divine worship. Each music minister serves in additional roles as well, but leading Liturgical song must always remain foremost.
If you enjoy singing and would like to use your talent to participate in a ministry, consider joining the Adult Choir. No experience is necessary. The director holds Bachelor and Masters degrees in music education and the choir members and organist (also holding a degree in music education) are always willing to assist all members as needed.
“Choirs comprise persons drawn from the community who posses the requisite musical skills and a commitment to the established schedule of rehearsals and liturgies. Thus, they are able to enrich the celebration by adding musical elements beyond the capabilities of the congregation alone.” (Sing to the Lord: Music in Divine Worship; USCCB, 2007.) “The choir alone will sing works whose musical demands enlist and challenge its competence.” (Bishops Committee on the Liturgy)
The choir sings at one Mass (usually 11:00 AM) each weekend beginning in September and ending in June. The choir also sings on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Easter Vigil, and other special occasions.
The Adult Choir is especially in need of male voices, but anyone in at least eighth grade are welcome and encouraged to join us. Interest and dedication are all you need to receive all the necessary training to participate fully. To join the Adult Choir simply come to a rehearsal on a Thursday evening in the church at 7:30.
Leaders of song and cantors are a much needed part of the music ministry if we are to expect the “full and active participation” of the assembly as called for in the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy (Second Vatican Council).
This parish needs cantors to leading the assembly in song at every weekend and Holy Day Mass and other special liturgies. Cantors rehearse with the music director and organists as needed and meet several times throughout the year as a group.
The Cantor ministry is open to any singer of at least high school age. An audition with the music director is required.
The Children’s Choir is a group of children from grade 2 to seven that rehearses in the autumn months and sings a concert and one Mass on Christmas Eve. Another group of grades 1 through seven rehearses in the early spring for a Mass and parish May Crowning on the first weekend of May. Other events may be planned based upon experience and participation levels This Choir rehearses once weekly. Look for details regarding this choir each autumn and spring in the Parish Bulletin.
Community Concert Band:
The St. Catharine’s Community Concert Band rehearses each summer from late June through early August usually on Wednesday evenings from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM. The ensemble is made up of musicians of at least high school age from the St. Catharine’s Parish and surrounding communities. The concert is scheduled for the second Sunday of August at 3:00 PM. Donations are taken at the door and given to the St. Catharine’s St. Vincent dePaul Society.
The handbell choir is open to any one of at least eighth grade age. Previous musical experience and music reading is helpful but not required. The hand bell choir rehearses for one hour each week in the music room. The hand bell choir enhances the liturgies at other special liturgies throughout the year.
Instrumentalists are also needed and welcome in the music ministry. No matter what your instrument, there is a place for you in this ministry.
Some instrumentalists play at the 11:00 AM Mass (with the organist and adult choir) others play at the 9:30 AM Mass (with Folk Choir). Each group also plays at various special liturgies.
Rehearsals take place once each week throughout the choir season, and as needed outside of the regular season.
Significant experience on your instrument and an audition with the music director is required. Proficient sight-reading ability is also a requirement, as music is distributed at a rehearsal and is played on the next Sunday Mass.
“The manifold possibilities of the organ in some way remind of the immensity and magnificence of God.” (Pope Benedict XVI)
Organists are an integral part of the Music Ministry. They accompany the choirs and cantors (assisting in musical leadership) and add to the impact of the liturgy as described above.
Significant keyboard experience is necessary for those who wish to participate in this aspect of the Music Ministry. Transitional training (from piano/keyboard to our organ) will be provided as needed. St. Catharine’s is fortunate to have a wonderful Allen Renaissance electronic organ with recording and MIDI capabilities.
Scheduling for organists is done on an individual basis. The music ministry is always seeking both scheduled organists and those willing to substitute.
Singers may participate as part of one of the following ministries:
Instrumentalists may participate as part of one of the following ministries:
Small Ensembles (accompanying choirs)
Community Concert Band (Summer only)
The music ministry is always expanding; these are the present offerings of the ministry. We strive to have a place for any one interested in the music ministry.
If you are interested in joining this wonderful ministry, please contact our Director of Liturgical Music, Patrick Dalton, at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 732-617-9419.