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The choir of the Royal Monastery of El Escorial sings at Mass in St Peter’s

In mid-June, the Augustinian choir of the Royal Monastery of El Escorial visited the city of Rome and the Vatican for a few days

Not many choirs have the good providence to sing Mass in St. Peter's. But this is precisely what happened to the boys of El Escorial during their recent stay in the Eternal City, where they were able to show off their "pure voices" in one of the most iconic sites of Christian worship.

This musical adventure was full of memories and souvenirs for the boys, including performing a few pieces on the terrace of the Residenza Paolo VI for the Prior General, and who spoke with them afterwards. Another highlight was a concert in the church of St Ignatius, where “they saw the effort and dedication of a year’s work generously recognised, judging by the enthusiasm of the audience."

With the pews crowded, and despite the fact that the curtain did not go up until 9pm, the boys were able to enjoy the moment and show off their skills to the Italian faithful.

Fr Juan says that, despite the packed schedule of visits and commitments, the trip was not without its traditional schoolboy moments of ice-cream, jokes and complicity. "It strengthens the bonds between the boys," he says. "For some, it was the first time they had been on a plane. This was our first trip outside the monastery since the pandemic, so I can say that it has been a very positive experience for us all.”

Recognising the value of this unique work within the Order

"The choir of the Monastery of El Escorial is a unique apostolate within the Order, and so we should highly prize the excellent human education and the artistic quality of the choirboys,” says Fr Javier Pérez Barba, Assistant General for Southern Europe and a great supporter of the work that Fr Pereña and Fr Pedro Alberto Sánchez - chapel master of the choir - are carrying out.



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