Thursday, February 18, 2016

Peter and Chloe Kolar: Music for Pope Francis in El Paso

Thursday greetings from the Midwest, where a warm-up is promised over the next few days. Hooray!

Yesterday, as you know, Pope Francis celebrated Mass at Ciudad Juarez in Mexico. He also made his way up a ramp and blessed immigrants across the border, who were lined up along the Rio Grande in El Paso. So moving to see.

And for those of us here at WLP, it was an extra special day. Thousands had gathered in the Sun Bowl Stadium of the University of Texas at El Paso to watch the Mass in Mexico live on the jumbotrons there. And WLP's own Peter Kolar directed the El Paso Diocesan Choir. If you want to see where the Church is alive and well in the United States, look no further than the Southwest and El Paso in particular. Four hours of song, dance, and prayer preceded the broadcast of the Mass at the Sun Bowl. I was able to watch it as I sat at my desk, but missed watching the diocesan choir before the Mass actually began across the border. I was able to watch it this morning, as can you here. [Sorry, folks, but the video has now been made "private" and can no longer be viewed.] The pre-Mass music led by Peter and the diocesan choir begins at 3:53:00. You gotta watch and listen!

One of the most touching moments was when Peter's seven-year-old daughter Chloe sang a solo in a song Peter wrote for the occasion. Tears came to my eyes as I watched and listened. The timing was amazing as the song was sung as Pope Francis blessed those across the Rio Grande. 

After Chloe's ministry to the thousands gathered there and the tens of thousands watching via video feed, there was a tended father-daughter moment, captured here.

Congratulations, Peter, for serving God's people so well with your extraordinary talents. We are so happy and proud of you!

Gotta sing. Gotta pray. 

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