The St. Blaise Schola Cantorum was founded in 2003 to provide sacred music for the Latin Mass at St. Agnes Mission Church in Fresno. The schola's first Mass was on Christmas Day, 2003. Since then, the schola has assisted at Masses roughly twice per month.
Gregorian chant is the musical heritage of the Catholic Church. It has its roots in the earliest days of Christianity, but it was St. Gregory the Great who codified chant into the system of notation we still use today.
The assistance of a schola enables a priest to offer a high Mass rather than a low Mass. In a low Mass, all text is read, though there may be some hymns. In a high Mass, however, the schola will chant the propers and ordinaries of the Mass. Every valid Mass has infinite intrinsic merit. But a high Mass with a schola gives greater glory to God and provides a magnificent, prayerful experience for the congregation.
Would you like to chant with the schola? The gentlemen of the St. Blaise Schola Cantorum rehearse on Thursday nights for about two hours. Being a schola member also requires a significant commitment of personal practice time.
Musical experience is helpful, but by no means necessary. The schola director can teach you the rudiments of chant and train you in proper vocal technique. More important - in fact, essential - is a love of the Mass and an earnest desire to strengthen your faith through chanted prayer. It's hard work, but the spiritual rewards are many.
For more information, contact us at [email protected].