SHAWNEE — St. Gregory’s University will present a free Christmas concert at 7:30 p.m. Sunday in the Abbey Church on the SGU campus.
The Festival of Lessons and Carols will be performed by the SGU Chorale under the direction of Abbey choirmaster Damian Whalen.
The festival is an annual tradition at St. Gregory’s and features scripture readings, as well as Advent and Christmas music. Songs include “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming,” “The Holly and the Ivy” and “Ave Maria.”
For this performance, the Chorale will sing most of the songs a cappella, a tribute, Bro. Damian explained, to its members’ beautiful harmonies and spirited performances.
“The SGU students in this year’s university Chorale have been a delight to work with,” Damian said, “as they have challenged themselves to prepare a program that will be sung almost entirely without accompaniment. They are an extremely talented group of students.”
Following the choir’s performance, audience members are invited to witness the blessing and lighting of Christmas lights in front of historic Benedictine Hall, which sits adjacent to St. Gregory’s Abbey.
“The blessing and lighting is an opportunity to call to mind the meaning of the Christian celebration of Christmas,” Damian said, “when we remember the birth of Jesus Christ, who came for the sake of our eternal salvation.”
For more information about St. Gregory’s University, go to www.stgregorys.edu.
Breanne Hill is director of communications for St. Gregory’s University