Singing for the Catholic Answers Conference in September. Left to right: Thomas Quackenbush, Giorgio Navarini, Graham Crawley, and Joe Daly.
“Liturgical music comes from Christ’s heart, the heart of the Church, longing for us.” - Bishop Olmsted
Greetings, friends of Floriani!
It’s been a while since our last update, so we would like to welcome our new subscribers. Your interest and support for our work is invaluable, and you are all in our prayers. The goal of this newsletter is to keep you updated on our endeavors, and to provide some reflection on the subjects of sacred music and the liturgy. Since arriving in Phoenix, we have been working hard to establish our mission, both at St. Anne, online, around the Valley and beyond. Put simply, our mission is to sing for the glory of God in the liturgy, to offer Him the best we can give, and to help others to do the same. As the book of Proverbs says, “Honour the Lord with thy substance, and give him of the first of all thy fruits: And thy barns shall be filled with abundance, and thy presses shall run over with wine.” But what does it mean to offer Him our ‘first fruits’? This is an important question—we see in the story of Cain and Abel the consequences of offering less than this. And more specifically, how are we to understand this as regards liturgical music? To answer this question well, we must consider two things: first, the purpose and nature of the Mass; and second, the role of music in the liturgy as understood by the Church. We will begin looking at these questions in the next edition of The Neum!
What kind of name is Neum? A neum is the basic element of Gregorian chant notation, primarily used as an indicator of pitch and duration, but can also indicate tempo and articulation. Above are some examples of neums used in Gregorian chant. We thought it a fitting title for our updates!
Choir Program at St. Anne
Since arriving at St. Anne in August, we have started two choirs—a children’s choir and the adult choir that sings for the 11am Mass on Sunday. Both are thriving, with the children’s choir reaching around 30 pupils, and the adult choir attracting 20 people. With the Christmas season on the horizon, we have begun our preparations for the celebration of the coming of our Lord. Giorgio has also been training young organists-to-be. The organ is the preferred instrument of the liturgy, as stated in the Vatican II document Sacrosanctum Concilium, for “it is the traditional musical instrument which adds a wonderful splendor to the Church's ceremonies and powerfully lifts up man's mind to God and to higher things.” Organists are rare these days, so we see it as an important aspect of our mission to raise young musicians in this tradition.
Chant School Podcast
Love chant but can't sing it? The Chant School podcast is designed to help you sing the ancient chants of the Church with ease. The podcast is available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, YouTube, and RSS.com. Tune in and learn to sing the great chants of the Church!
Why We Need Your Support
By donating to Floriani, you make it possible for us to spend the other half of our time:
producing our Chant School podcast
infiltrating the culture on social media
leading sacred music workshops and conferences
and preparing for and performing public concerts.
In order to continue doing this work full-time, we need to raise $60,000 over the next two months!
Please consider making a donation or becoming a monthly supporter. And please pray for our mission! God bless you!
How to Donate
Online: Go to www.floriani.org/support-us
By check: Floriani, 6216 S Opal Dr, Chandler, AZ 85249
Questions? Feel free to email us anytime at email@example.com. We are so grateful for your support! Please keep us in your prayers! - Giorgio, Graham, Joe, and Thomas