From the blog Liturgy Guy comes the following news about an orchestral Mass to be celebrated on Ascension Thursday in Charlotte, North Carolina.On Ascension Thursday, May 14, the Carolina Catholic Chorale will conclude their 2014/2015 season singing the Missa Octo Vocum for double choir by Renaissance master Hans Leo Hassler (1564-1612) at St. Ann Catholic Church in Charlotte. (3635 Park Road; phone: 704-523-4641) The High Mass will be offered by St. Ann’s pastor, Father Timothy Reid, who has been offering both forms of the Roman Rite since 2008. Thursday’s liturgy will be the second orchestral Mass offered in the Diocese of Charlotte this month, and the fifth in the past 18 months. The Chorale will be accompanied at Thursday’s Mass by the CPCC Early Music Consort.
Mr. Thomas Savoy, music director of St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Charlotte and director of the Carolina Catholic Chorale, explained to the Catholic News Herald the importance of rediscovering the Church’s musical heritage: “The Roman Catholic Church lays claim to indisputably the finest tradition of sacred music in the Western world. It is an immense source of Catholic witness in our culture and is a gateway to evangelization. This living tradition of authentic Catholic music, particularly choral music, needs to be made manifest to our people, our talented musicians and passed on to our youth.”
In the nineteenth century Fyodor Dostoevsky declared that “beauty will save the world”. In the twenty-first century the Diocese of Charlotte is bringing beauty back to the faithful in part through orchestral masses offered in the Extraordinary Form. Returning these classical pieces to their original settings is helping to foster a cultural and liturgical renaissance in Charlotte. Pray that other dioceses may demonstrate the wisdom and initiative to follow suit.