LA Religious Ed Congress

This is really big, as you already know, and it starts this Thursday. Over 40,000 people, 188 speakers, 315 workshops (almost 20% in Spanish). Though its focus is religious ed and youth ministry, liturgy is very much on offer. That says something very positive about the renewal of the RCC since V2. The style appears to be decidely more  “contemporary” than “traditional,” which is no big surprise. Lots of friends of mine on the roster. Wish I could be there, but I’m, umm, here at the abbey directing the Latin chant for Laetare Sunday and then placing the music orders (Palestrina, Rutter, etc.) for this summer’s NCYC camp. But watch this space — we’re making arrangements for some live blogging from Anaheim, CA.

Here are the workshops which are tagged “liturgy” or “music” this year.

–Tony Alonso, “Songs of Justice and Peace”; “Singing and Celebrating the Sacraments”
–Betsey Beckman, “Mourning into Dancing”; “The Dance of Faith”
–Anna Betancourt / Pedro Rubalcava, “Song Which Forms and Transforms Faith – Music for Reconciliation and First Communion” (in Spanish)
–Benjamin Bravo Perez, “Why do Catholics Abandon Their Church?”; “The Home, Key Place in a Time of Crisis of Faith” (in Spanish)
–Grayson Warren Brown, “Make a Joyful Noise unto the Lord with Music, Music, Music!”; “The Majesty of Grace, the Power of the Spirit”
–Rev John Cusick, “The Word Became Flesh: An Adult Appreciation of the Incarnation”; “Why We Do What We Do: An Explanation of the Signs, Symbols, Gestures, Rituals and History at Mass”
–Fr. Bob Fabing, “The Living Eucharist: Our Love, Joy, Need, Fear, Sorrow and Anger Find a Home”
–Santiago Fernández, “Help, Please! What’s Happening with the Music in the Mass?”; “When There Is No Choir: Music for Quinceañeras, Weddings, and Funerals” (in Spanish)
–Sr. Paule Freeburg, “Children, the Word and Music”
–David Haas, “The Mission of Liturgical Music: To Change Hearts”; “To Be a Servant: The Vocational Call of Liturgical Musicians”
–Marty Haugen, “Songs of Justice and Peace”; “Singing and Celebrating the Sacraments”
–Val Limar Jansen, “Get On Board! Musical Liturgy as Model of Faith Formation”; “If You Build It, They Will Come”
–Frank Jansen, “Get On Board! Musical Liturgy as Model of Faith Formation”; “If You Build It, They Will Come”
–Tom Kendzia, “Return to the Passion”; “Get On Board! Musical Liturgy as Model of Faith Formation”
–Liam Lawton, “A Time for Healing”
–Jesse Manibusan, “Unlocking the Secrets of Liturgy with Youth”
–Rev. J-Glenn Murray, “The Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy: Still an Incredible Abundance 47 Years Later”; “The Genius of African-American Liturgical Experiences Revisited: An Incredible Abundance Waiting to Be Realized”
–Rev. Philip Roderick, “Sensing the Holy: Touching the Earth, Sounding the Word, Praying the Body”; “Was Jesus a Jazz Musician? Music and Mystics in the Flow of Spirit:”
–Rev. Paul Turner, “The Order of Mass”; “The Revised Eucharistic Prayers”
–Christopher Walker, “A Song of Comfort: Music for Funerals”; “Children, the Word and Music”


  1. Can I also recommend the Contemplative Mass, on Friday at 5.15pm, which will make use of some of the music from Psallite and will be led by musicians including the Collegeville Composers Group.

  2. In the many years I have worked in parishes, I’ve found that tensions are more likely to arise between the directors of music and religious education than other staff members. The reason seems to center on a fundamental divide regarding the means and goals of music in the development of children. The musical slant of the LA Religious Education Congress seems to fuel this antagonism in that there is no visible evidence of alternative points of view. I’ve never attended one of the conferences, so please correct me if I’m wrong.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.