Soul of Christ
Simple, beautiful, dignified, singable. That’s the music of the Dominican Friars of Poland, now available in English on iTunes, Spotify and all other online music stores.
Soul of Christ
Simple, beautiful, dignified, singable. That’s the music of the Dominican Friars of Poland, now available in English. A rotating cast of non-professional singers from across the country came together over an extended weekend to record two albums’ worth of liturgical music.
Most of the pieces were unfamiliar to most of the singers, and yet the beauty of the music, coupled with the spiritual depths of the texts, provided the singers with ongoing inspiration throughout this challenging experience. The performances here, recorded by volunteer singers after a brief period of rehearsing, are meant to inspire and encourage others to use these very same pieces at their own liturgies. They can be learned and sung well in a short amount of time, by dedicated choirs of modest means.
The two albums’ worth of material form a basic corpus of music for the whole church year. Today we are excited to share with you the first album, Soul of Christ, with choral music for Lent, Easter, and Ordinary Time. The second album, featuring music for Advent, Marian feast days, and Ordinary Time will be released in the fall of 2020.
We are pleased to make this music available for free to the whole world. Please download our scores and start singing! We know that this music will transform the prayer life of singers and congregation alike through its powerful, meditative beauty.
A project of this scope has many participants and many costs, and we gratefully accept donations from anyone who would like to support our work. Please go to Donate tab on the top to make a financial contribution of any size to the Dominican Liturgical Center, which commissioned and recorded these pieces.
We hope that these wonderful, prayerful pieces may inspire you to pray to Our Blessed Lord through song — these songs!
We also recommend our previous album, "Jesus I Trust in You", recorded in Krakow, Poland, for World Youth Day 2016.
A project of this scope has many participants and many costs, and we gratefully accept donations from anyone who would like to support our work. You can make a financial contribution of any size below, to the Dominican Liturgical Center, which commissioned and recorded these pieces.
You can make bank transfer to our USD account or with credit card or PayPal, using the form below.
- IBAN: PL31 1140 2004 0000 3812 1049 7818
- SWIFT/BIC: BREXPLPWMBK
- Bank Name: mBank S.A. Bankowość Detaliczna, Skrytka Pocztowa 2108, 90-959 Łódź 2, Poland
- Account Owner: Fundacja Dominikanski Osrodek Liturgiczny, Dominikanska 3/11, 31-043 Krakow, Poland
DLC Choir 1
Christopher Mueller, conductor
Julia Bellefeuille, Erin Brown, Hope Chamberlain, Becca Chavarría, Danielle Dellino, Eugenia Geisel, Mary Van Hollebeke
Mikaela Hertel, Ariaga Mucek, Tess Murray, Annie Nguyen, Jenny Taylor
Paul-Henry Flynn, Marcin Juraszek, Br. Andrew Thomas Kang, O.P., Fr. Gabriel Torretta, O.P.
Zachary Groeblinghoff, Fr. Lukasz Misko, O.P., Peter Molina, Giordan Montero
Recording date: Thursday, January 2, 2020
Blessed Sacrament Church, Seattle, WA
Performances: 2, 3, 6, 8, 10, 11, 12, 19
DLC Choir 2
Zachary Groeblinghoff, conductor
Julia Bellefeuille, Erin Brown, Hope Chamberlain, Becca Chavarría, Eugenia Geisel, Lizzie Priddis, Sophia Holt, Caitlin Lynch
Mikaela Hertel, Tess Murray, Annie Nguyen, Jenny Taylor
Marcin Juraszek, Br. Andrew Thomas Kang, O.P., Fr. Lukasz Misko, O.P.
Matthew McGehee, Peter Molina, Giordan Montero
Recording date: Saturday, January 4, 2020.
Performances: 1, 4, 5, 7, 9, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18
Audio recording by: Bill Levey, Via Audio Seattle
Mastering and post-production by: Magda Piotrowska, Hear Candy Mastering
Score editor: Jan Warchoł
People who have experienced this music in liturgy say:
Amira Davis, research scientist, Seattle, WA:
I never encountered this music growing up, but experiencing liturgies with the Polish Dominican music (chant and polyphony), though completely foreign, felt like home to me. The beauty of the sound and the contemplative style draws me into prayer in a way I have never experienced before. Hearing and singing it draws me to close my eyes and raise my mind to the heavens. It has taught me to pray with scripture through music. When I had the privilege of having this music as a part of my church's daily liturgies, the music, and in turn, scripture and prayer, became a part of my day, a part of my breathing. The simplicity of the words and the undeniable beauty of the music draws me in and remains in me. It has given me a little taste of fulfilling our call to 'pray without ceasing', infiltrating my mind and my day with this sung prayer.
Fr. Michael O'Connor, OP, music editor, St. Michael's Hymnal:
Over the course of the past few decades, the Polish Dominicans have fostered and developed a tremendous corpus of vernacular liturgical music, written in a simple and beautiful choral style that both ennobles liturgical worship and readily invites congregational participation in it. It is wonderful to see more and more of that treasury of contemporary liturgical music being adapted into English and made widely available to the English speaking world through the work of the Dominican Liturgical Center. To anyone who is interested in prayerful and dignified liturgical music in the English language, I highly recommend the work of the Dominican Liturgical Center and its new “Soul of Christ” project, as well as its future projects to share more of the Polish Dominican liturgical music tradition with English-speaking worshippers throughout the world. While the worship of God in different vernacular languages necessarily differs in some ways throughout the world, beauty is universal, and the Polish Dominican liturgical music tradition has a special contribution to make to this beautiful and dignified worship of God in sacred song.
Zachary Groebblinghoff, high school music teacher & parish music director, Boise, ID, Soul of Christ production team:
This Polish Dominican style of writing is evocative not only in harmonies but in theology, meditation, and depth of text. This music is ideal for parishes to participate in experiencing the mysteries of our blessed Catholic faith with reverence and accessibility. There are so many ways to share this music - the four part harmonies are wonderful and mesmerizing, and yet a piano or organ playing the other parts while a choir or single voice singing the melody can be just as prayerful and enticing. This music mixes beautifully the tradition of the Church in four part motets of the Renaissance in polyphony and the Novus Ordo with vernacular prayers and simple melodies.
Julia Bellefeuille, graduate student, University of Notre Dame:
This music is simple and striking. The harmonies are not distracting from the text, but rather they draw me into a prayerful and personal encounter with the Word of God.
The style is reverent and dynamic. It is not afraid to claim our Catholic tradition, but also freely creates something new that corresponds to a world that is longing for its redeemer.
Fr. Gabriel Torretta, OP, doctoral student, University of Chicago:
This music taught me to love singing at mass, and more importantly, it taught me to love the mass as a divine song of sacrifice and praise. I’m a convert, and to me “music at mass” always just meant “music that we sang in my Protestant churches”: 19th-century hymns, pop-folk from the ‘70s and ‘80s, or praise choruses from the ‘90s. When I first encountered this Polish Dominican music as a grad student, I was completely blown away: here was music that sounded totally different from anything I’d heard before, in church or on the radio, but was at the same time totally intuitive; here was music that a handful of amateurs could pick up and learn in five minutes, and somehow turn into captivating beauty; here was music that was drew me in, that actually made me want to sing it. And the more I sang it, the more I realized I was singing the mass. Singing this music taught me what the mass was, and taught me to love it. I’ve been a Dominican now for more than a decade and a priest for almost five years, and I cannot possibly express my gratitude to God for how he formed my love of his liturgy through music like this. I hope it helps you to learn to love, too.
Michelle Scully, college campus minister, Mercyhurst University, Erie, PA:
This style of music allows people to join in a prayerful way - it allows it to become almost second nature, rather than being all-encompassing of attention. It facilitates rather than distracts from prayer. It has a potential to draw young people out of their day to day toward beauty by providing an experience that is approachable but set apart.