July 18, 2012     James Knapp

Encore Group Performs in Boston!


St Joseph the Worker Parish Choir performs at Fanueil Hall

Faneuil Hall, built in 1742, is known as the “cradle of liberty”.  Town meetings were held here between 1764 and 1774, where the the resounding words of Samuel Adams, Paul Revere and others leading cries of protest against the imposition of taxes on the colonies were made. Later, Frederick Douglass, William Lloyd Garrison, and Lucy Stone brought their struggles for freedom here in the 19th century. In short, Faneuil Hall has consistently been a center for the voices of liberty and freedom.

Under the direction of Sister Angela Faustina, the choir sang a mixture of sacred and patriotic music to a very enthusiastic audience. At one point in the concert, a choir member gave a beautiful oration about the meaning of the American flag and patriotism. During the reading, he revealed that several members of the choir were not born in the United States, but had joyfully become naturalized US citizens who now call America home. They had several people from the Philippines, South Africa, Indonesia, various parts of Europe, and South and Central America.

As I heard this group sing America the Beautiful, The Star Spangled Banner and God Bless America, I was truly overwhelmed by the presence before me.  Here we were in the exact place where Sam Adams and Paul Revere were fighting for independence, and almost 250 later, listening to Americans from all over the world sing of the freedom and greatness of America. I do not believe there was a dry eye in the house.

The power of music, the enthusiasm of the human spirit, and the privilege of being American: I was very proud of my country and the singers before me. What a gift they gave that day!

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