Dominican Liturgical Center Foundation from Cracow caring for the beauty of the liturgy

Four countries, 350 workshops participants, 200 people on retreat, a few thousands of website followers and festival recipients – the Dominican Liturgical Center works for the Church in Poland and over the world.

One year ago, on 21st of January 2017, the Choir of Dominican Liturgical Centre in Cracow had a chance to prepare the music setting during the Holy Mass on ending of Jubilee 800th year of the Order of Preachers in the Lateran Basilica. The prayer was lead by pope Francis.

The group of over 50 singers had a couple-month preparation for this event, directed by fr. Dawid Kusz, a dominican, composer and conductor. Selecting the choir and the repertoire, organisers percieved a heritage connected to dominican monasteries and the Niepojęta Trójco (eng. The Inconcievable Trinity) songbooks published in Cracow. We also presented a few new tracks in three official languages of the Order, and treditional dominican anthems: „Salve Regina” to the Holy Mary and „O Lumen Ecclesiae” to saint Dominic.

As the Master of the Order of Preachers, fr. Bruno Cadoré OP said, chants prepared by the Dominican Liturgical Center were appreciated by the celebration participants from all over the world: friars, tertiaries, friends of the Order, also numerous bishops, accenting deeply prayerful character of chants.

In relation to presented video, Teresa Bosak, an associate of the Foundation expressed her hope, that her visit would be a pilgrimage and a source of inspiration fot the Foundation along the year, as we will be facing many challenges, our own plans and dreams. From Rome, the Eternal City, we did not bring nothing but our minds and hearts filled with the new hope and ideas.

Extraordinary Music Workshop

The new energy was almost necessary for us, as we were organising next events, being the key-ones for our mission, as follows: Extraordinary Music Workshop in August and the Mysterium fascinans retreat in September.

Dominican Liturgical Center, in 2004 has set liturgical music workshops, followed by similar events in Poland in the future. Organised from 2013 (2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2019), Extraordinary Music Workshops are the greatest events of this kind in Poland, participated by hundreds of people from Poland, as well as Italy, Germany, United States, Lithuania, Ukraine and Belarus.

Workshops provide a learning space for beginners and advanced melodists, both polyphonic adepts, responsible for the choir, gregorian chant practicians, instrumentalists (like organ players in this year). The master lessons was the novelty for most advanced and qualified melodists from earlier years – course was guided by Divna Ljubojević.

Last year, the workshops was followed by the Extraordinary Music Festival, including 5 evening concerts of european famous old sacra music: Alamire from Great Britain, Graindelavoix from Belgium, Linnamuusikud from Estonia, Divna Ljubojević with Melódi from Serbia featuring workshop participants, Floripari, Perfugium and Sancta Trinitas choir for the end. Every concert was taking place in natural spaces for sacral music, i.e. one of Cracow’s monumental churches, and the concerts were open and free for all. Concert guests did not only consist of workshop participants, but also local visitors from Cracow and guests from around the country, coming especially for the event.

After that magnificent week, we started to miss the participants of the Workshops, so we started to prepare plans for the next ones in 2019.

Mysterium fascinans

However, in the middle of September, we were greeting next 200 participants of the Mysterium fascinans retreat – jubilee 10th edition. During a recent decade, the aim of the organisers is attempt to transpose a complex theology into clear and intelligible language, along with harmonic combination of scientific thought, spiritual symposies and common celebration of splendid liturgy.

This year’s guest was fr. Cassian Folsom, benedictine father and professor on the Anselmianum – the Pontifical Liturgical Institute. Together with fr. Wojciech Węgrzyniak and other speakers, fr. Folsom initiated us into the secrets of celebrated mysteries, showing how both forms complement each other. Simultaneously, the motto: “The Spirit of the Liturgy”, contained a question about living related to liturgy every day, or in other words – how the liturgy inspires the christian spirituality.

Although all roads lead to Rome, besides the Eternal City we visited the United States too, participating in Convocation of Catholic Leaders: The Joy of the Gospel in Orlando, where we were asked to prepare the liturgical music based on experience of World Youth Day in Cracow. In October we were leading liturgical music workshops in the dominican Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary in London.

It was also an important year for the Dominican Lithurgical Center Choir, which presented itself from the best side, among others on the concert in Rzeszów, in st. Padre Pio Foundation, during patron day of st. Anne Basilica in Cracow and on advent evening.

Step by step

The Foundation’s Shop in cloisters invites all the time fans of good books, music and art; the internet shop ships more and more orders to the whole country, creating new ways to fulfill our mission. After a refit in the beginning of the year, our webside develops.

Along with the beginning of the academic year, we opened a new our important regular projects. New catechumenate year has begun, preparing adults to recieve a baptism, a confirmation and first communion. After the whole year of every-week meetings, studying our faith and experiencing the community of the Church, candidates will take their initiation on Spring.

We also started 7th edition of the Cantor School, training people to be competent and responsible leaders in churches. This year we proposed to our graduates to continue their study on third, advanced year.

As in every year, we prepare on every Sunday the Holy Mass in church of Saint Mary of the Snows “on Gródek”, Cracow, and every Thuesday the Votive Mass for st. Dominic in his chapel in Basilica of the Holy Trinity in Cracow. We dedicate our prayers there for every associates, benefactors and friends of the Foundation.

Last year was the time of personal changes in the Foundation, as they happen from the half of 2016. After some changes we enter the 2018, working dynamically and rapidly, with new ideas and specific plans. We are glad to see that implementation of our mission involves not only our team, but also numerous dominican friars and group of trustworthy volunteers, without who we could not manage to fulfill most important of our intentions.

As non for profit organization mostly we rely on the generosity of our donors and we are very grateful that many people share our values and the way we accomplish our goals. Therefore, we ask you for further openness and sharing information about our activities, in order to let us create new projects.

Translation by Paweł Połeć

Related articles