Follow by Email

Why God Invented the Internet

Pope Francis made some comments some time ago that did not make sense until relatively recently. I refer, of course, to his thoughts on the internet.

"The internet, in particular, offers immense possibilities for encounter and solidarity."
"This is something truly good, a gift from God."- Pope Francis

I'm old enough to remember a world before and after the internet. My first impression of the internet was not a good one. I remember learning of a neighbor whose wife had met someone in a chat room and then walked out on her family to be with that person she met online. I remember the paranoia people had regarding online purchases, sharing information, pornography, stalkers, etc. Even though I've found a lot of pros over the years (access to scientific journals, ebooks, e-libraries, up-to-date news, social media helping me stay in touch with friends), the internet can still be a scary place. If you read any given comment box (the cake comment apocalypse here is a good example), you know what I am talking about. So I will admit that I raised an eyebrow of skepticism when Pope Francis made these comments. 

Then I came across this...

....and my mind was blown. 

In this video are Carmelite nuns from all over the world, joining their voices to sing a remarkable rendition of "Nada te Turbe." This song, based on a poem by St. Teresa de Avila, was compiled to celebrate the 500 year mark since St. Teresa's birth. I cannot even imagine how much work the Virtual Musicians Group put into organizing such a beautiful montage of religious sisters coming together across time and space to create a virtual choir. This! This is a gift!

For a a few minutes, I had a clear vision of what heaven must sound like with so many beautiful voices coming together to sing a song of praise. Pope Francis was right. When the internet is used for things like this...it can truly become a gift from God. 

They also have another song up, Salve Regina! Only this choir contains the beautiful baritones and tenors of the Carmelite Friars that took part in this endeavor. 


Such beauty! Such glorious beauty! This was so beautiful, I had it playing when I was alone in the lab last weekend or so. Okay, maybe I was blasting it...but it was definitely worth it and I would have loved to have someone walk in on me listening to this as I sorted through brains. Don't judge. 

Pax Vobiscum!

Eventide Review and Giveaway!


I got an email some time ago, asking me to check out Voces8 new album Eventide. Though I was not familiar with the British group Voces8, I was intrigued by some of the song titles and decided to look the group up. After checking out their site and learning more about them, I decided to give their album a try. I was not disappointed. 
Track list to Eventide:
1. Te lucis ante terminum
2. Hymn to the Fallen
3. Reflexionem
4. Where I sleep
5. The Seal Lullaby
6. Second Eve
7. Quanta qualia
8. Underneath the stars
9. Locus iste
10. Corpus Christi Carol
11. Benedictus
12. Os justi
13. Steal away
14. Ave Maria
15. O magnum mysterium
16. Te lucis ante terminum


I keep a pretty open mind when it comes to choirs and ecclesiastical music. Even so, I do not always like the voices or style of every choir group I hear. I can be pretty picky when it comes to classics like Ave Maria or Te Lucis. Yes, the lyrics to these songs are the same regardless of the version of the song you listen to...but these songs can be anything from unbearable to ethereal, depending on how the voices and music come together. Albums like this one can be awful, okay, or simply ethereal...lifting your spirits so that you feel that much closer to heaven. As much as I hope for the latter experience when checking out albums like this one, I know better than to have high expectations for choirs that I am not familiar with.

Well, I put the album on and proceeded to get some work done. I figured that I would try out a few songs and go from there. Well, the album played on until the end and I was well into a replay of the album before I even realized how much time had gone by. The voices were lovely, the selection of songs delightful, and it was a great listen overall. The emphasis of this album is the collection of voices and how they can work together to create beautiful renditions of the songs listed above...not so much about the instruments that can be used together with these voices. The voices of Voces8 work beautifully together and are absolutely heavenly (and very relaxing). Keep this album on as you read, as you toil away on your computer, or as you savor a nice glass of wine at the end of a long day. If there's any padres out there, a few of these songs would be a great addition to any Eucharistic Adoration events you may plan in the future.

In short, try out the album....you will not be disappointed.

With that said, I was offered a copy of this album for a giveaway here. I think I will make this one easy. Comment here or on my Facebook page, tweet (follow me at @catholicscigeek), or email me  with the title of your favorite ecclesiastical classic and you will be entered into a random drawing for your chance to win a copy of this album. This contest is open to anyone in the United States. I will announce the winner a week or so from now. I will contact the winner and send out the album once I get an address and once I am able to get to a post office in NYC.

Best wishes and pax vobiscum!