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Liturgical music does not have ethnic borders. It does not have ethnic characteristics. It is not Greek, Arabic or Russian. The church fathers did not create ethnic borders for worship. If music lifts you up, if it is a vehicle for prayer—not Western, Eastern, Arabic Greek, Russian or Byzantine— it is church music. +Metropolitan JOSEPH

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Latest News from the Department of Sacred Music

"East Meets West" is Theme of February Sacred Music Institute


The Department of Sacred Music is thrilled to announce the first Sacred Music Institute of 2019, "East Meets West," being held from February 15-17. Graciously hosted by Ss. Constantine & Helen Orthodox Church in Carrollton (Dallas), Texas, this year's Institute will be within close proximity to six Antiochian parishes.

Keeping with our theme, for the first time we will offer instruction in Western-Rite chant and a Western Rite Vespers, in addition to Byzantine chant, conducting, vocal technique, and the Typikon. Our keynote speaker, His Grace Bishop John of the Diocese of Worcester will be gracing us with his presence, and offering some thoughts on the diversity of the Antiochian musical tradition.


How the Department of Sacred Music Choir Workshop Revitalized Our Music Ministry

By Jen Hartmann, Assistant Choir Director

Interested in hosting a choir workshop at your parish?
Contact Paul Jabara, Chairman of the Department of Sacred Music, at

On September 30, 2018, while directing the choir in the Trisagion Hymn during Divine Liturgy, I experienced something profound. The familiar people standing in front of me weren't just twenty-five dedicated and faithful individuals who just happen to come upstairs and sing for Divine Liturgy on Sundays, but they were a choir. A cohesive unit. Twenty-five pairs of eyes looking intently at me. Breathing together. Blending together. Singing in tune, in tempo, and in faith. Their eyes, ears, and hearts were wide open, and the joy was palpable. Something big had changed between the previous week and this moment.

The difference? We invited Paul Jabara to lead a workshop with our choir that weekend (September 28-30, 2018).

Dept. of Sacred Music News Archive