Volunteers can contribute to parish music ministry

May 16, 2016

Re: "Music festival throws open doors of the basilica" (WCR, April 18).

With regard to the above article, all is manageable until we come to the passage:

"Edmonton, teeming with professional and amateur choirs . . . is a very choral city, . . . but that is not reflected in its Catholic churches. People think music in churches tends to just be the best that some volunteers can offer."

To me, this appears to be the wrong approach: All my life the mantra for parish choirs has been "Let's do the best we can - after all, this is not a performance."

There is a fine balance between talent and humility which, I hope, Catholics struggle with throughout their lives.

Also, there is the element of our tolerance for the human shortcomings of others.

This extends even to the clergy: We've had priests of varying charisma (and speaking abilities) at our parish. We very much appreciated the "orators" but were also loving and accepting of those less verbally-gifted who read from notes and whose sermons lacked the "magic."

The overriding theme was always one of tolerance, compassion, humility.

This is the Catholic Church, not some slick evangelical operation we see often on television, with professional choirs, bands and orators.

Peter Ordynec