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Special Workshops Offered for Diocesan Musicians and Choirs

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When Catholic Convocation 2012 convenes Saturday, October 20, 2012, at St. Michael the Archangel Church in Cary, music will be a major focus. The Convocation will offer a three-piece track workshop for Diocesan musicians, including volunteer choir members, parish music directors and others.

Fr. Dennis Gill, director of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Office for Divine Worship, will guide attendees through “Sing to the Lord: Music in Divine Worship,” a document produced by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

During a recent appearance on the Diocesan television program Catholic Perspective, Gerard Hall of the Diocese of Raleigh explained the initiative and his excitement about Fr. Gill’s presentation. “We’re going to get the expert, first-hand, to be with us,” said Mr. Hall, Director of the Office of Divine Worship.    

In addition to his presence at Catholic Convocation, Fr. Gill will speak to Diocesan music professionals on Friday, October 19 about how to use the liturgy as an evangelizer. Attendance at Professional Day, which is geared toward full-time employees, is limited to the first 80 people who register. (To register, contact the Diocesan Office of Divine Worship at 919-832-6281 or gerard.hall@raldioc.org.)

Three topics to be considered on Professional Day include “The Christian Mystery: The Mystery the Liturgy Celebrates,” “Authentic Participation: The Link to the Christian Mystery and the Christian Life” and “The Liturgical Books: The Handbooks for Evangelization.”

“In this era of the new evangelization, what does it mean for us to step out of the Church - out of that building – to live, as Catholics, the gospel message?” asked Mr. Hall. “Fr. Gill will lead us through a day of looking at how we can make liturgy answer that for us...living that gospel message in a modern world.”

Music is fundamental to the liturgy, and integral to the human experience, said Mr. Hall. “Songs evoke memories...music is a powerful source in our liturgy,” he said. “It’s that sense that we have the gift of music we’re to give back to God.”

In addition to the Catholic Convocation and Professional Day, Mr. Hall discussed upcoming initiatives his office is preparing, including training for liturgical ministers, as well as norms for the celebration of Mass. Because of the Revised Roman Missal 3rd Edition, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion will have new norms to follow, such as when to approach the altar. Training for these ministers will begin next year.

“We always need training and formation, no matter how much we think we know or how long we’ve done something,” said Mr. Hall. “This will give us that opportunity.”