The July 13 United in Spirit concert at St. Paul Catholic Church attested to the power of music to bring people together.
The concert, born of the Orlando, Fla., tragedy, was to remember all victims of hatred and violence and to build a bridge in our community.
Suggested by a musician, the idea was embraced by the downtown parish leadership and culminated in a most uplifting evening. The concert responded to Pope Francis’ call to create a “culture of encounter.”
In the nave of the 150-year-old gothic church, surrounded by stained-glass windows and oil paintings of Christ’s Stations of the Cross, the audience began by singing “God of Day and God of Darkness” and ended by joining the St. Peter Claver Gospel Choir in “We Shall Overcome.”
Among the dozen musicians performing, Svitlana Merlichenko’s soulful “Pie Jesu” held us spellbound, Bradley Kerns’ trombone arrangement of “Bist Du Bei Mir” was sweet and elegiac, and Tedrin Blair Lindsay’s dynamic piano arias brought the audience to their feet.
Afterward, the audience, musicians and various clergy attended the reception at Brossart House, with hors d’oeuvres courtesy of Lexington Diner.
As a sign of solidarity, attendees signed a banner to be sent to Orlando.
Gaby Bedetti and Don Boes