As we see it, maintaining our sacred spaces and putting them at the service of sacred music is a work of the New Evangelization. Here, the beauty of both the Shrine and the music serve as a window through which visitors can glimpse the beauty of Christ and His Church.
During the first years of her marriage, music filled St. Elizabeth Ann Seton’s home. She was an accomplished pianist, while her husband, William, was an even more accomplished violinist, who owned the first Stradivarius violin in America. Every evening, the two played together, delighting their children and themselves. Later, after William’s death and her move to Emmitsburg, Mother Seton ensured that music remained a part of her congregation’s life and worship. As she saw it, music was a way of offering joyful praise to the Lord.
Today, Mother Seton’s love of music lives on at the Shrine in two ways. First, our organist, cantors, and music coordinator ensure that the Church’s tradition of sacred music continues to enrich our liturgical life. Second, our Sacred Concert Series brings local and national musical groups to perform at the Shrine, attracting music lovers from around the region and serving as an important tool for evangelization.
Complementing the beauty of the music is our Basilica, which is not only a grand place of worship, seating up to 900 people, but also one of the best acoustical spaces in the mid-Atlantic region. Its seven types of marble surfaces and large arches and domes offer performers a uniquely live space, while our Moeller Pipe Organ is a thrilling addition to any concert or liturgical event. The Basilica Hall, while significantly smaller than the Basilica—seating only 150 people—has the same acoustic excitement. Featuring two beautiful paintings and several stained-glass windows, this space is perfect for small ensembles and intimate solo performances.
Lastly, our peaceful grounds offer yet another venue for performers, with the front and back porch of the old stone house providing a stage for musicians and a natural acoustic band shell that funnels music out into the shaded gardens.
“While I live, while I have my being, in time and eternity, let me sing praises to my God.”
– Mother Seton
Sponsor the Shrine’s Concert Series
Sponsor our Liturgical Music Program
For more information about sponsorships, please contact Chris Harmon, Director of Major and Planned Gifts, at 301-447-6021 or by email at Chris.Harmon@setonshrine.org.
Fostering Worship and Devotion
Making A Joyful Noise Unto the Lord
Renewing the Spirit of God’s People
Educating and Inspiring Future Generations
Discovering and Experiencing Our Historic Site
Bringing Faith and History to Life
Communicating Mother Seton’s Legacy to the World