Musical Bishop

 

Zenit carries a nice interview with a Russian Orthodox bishop, Hilarion Alfeev. The bishop also happens to be a composer. He has some sensible comments on East-West ecumenism, but listen in on what he says about music:

Music plays a very important role in the Orthodox liturgy. As a bishop I celebrate liturgy every Sunday and on all feast days. The quality of the choir and the repertoire that it chooses is something of importance for me.

Being formed as a musician from my very early years, I cannot completely dissociate myself from music when it is sung in the church, and even as I am reading liturgical prayers, I continue to hear the singing.

Last summer I composed “The Divine Liturgy” and “The All-Night Vigil” for the choir a cappella. My main aim was to write such music that would not distract from prayer either for me or my parishioners.

Singing in the church should be oriented towards prayer and should not be turned into a concert, as often happens.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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2 Responses to Musical Bishop

  1. Thank you very much, Todd, for introducing me to this interview. I shall (if I have time) be commenting upon it.

  2. Pingback: Musical Bishop on tv « Catholic Sensibility

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