Welcome to the website for the St. Joseph Parish Music Ministry!
A common misnomer is the notion that church music is about singing and playing instruments. Nothing could be further from the truth! In every sense of the phrase, music ministry is indeed a ministry of the Church. Refering to publications by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, such as this one, or Co-Workers in the Vineyard of the Lord, or by digging more deeply into the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy "Sacrosanctum Concilium" promulgated by His Holiness Pope Paul VI at the Second Vatican Council (which this year, 2013, celebrates its 50th year), it becomes very clear that liturgical music is truly a ministry and a service to the People of God.
As such, we welcome and rejoice in the discernment of His people to serve and to minister in this capacity. It truly is a gift to welcome new members to our ministry.
If you've ever wondered about music in the Catholic Church, listening with an ear perhaps more attuned to form and style rather than to liturgical significance, you may find both interest and delight into delving more deeply into the meaning and significance of liturgical music, particularly at Holy Mass. For the hymns and songs and psalms we sing are directly related to the liturgy of the day.
St. Joseph Parish of Mountain View, in Deanery 2 of the Diocese of San José in California is blessed to have a musical tradition which reaches back to the foundation of the parish over one hundred years ago, and which grows and evolves as guided by the Holy Spirit. Today, liturgical music is served by the following groups:
Morning Glory is a small group of music ministers who with great devotion serve the 7:00am and 8:30am masses every Sunday. They also serve the mid-day masses on Holy Days of Obligation. The Morning Glory repertoire encompasses various styles, but often selections are chosen which are appropriate to the instruments on hand. They are always looking for new members! And in truth, with the commitment they have to the difficult early mornings and mid-day masses, there is truly a need.
Cantemus Filipinas Chorale is a group of music ministers from the Filipino community from all over the Diocese of San José who serve the 5:30pm vigil mass on Saturdays. This dynamic group can be found ministering at various parishes in the diocese. At St. Joseph Parish, they are most often accompanied by piano, and join together with the whole Music Ministry of the parish for big events and solemnities.
The St. Joseph Parish Youth Choir is composed primarily of youth and young adults with most members hailing from the St. Joseph Youth Group, with mentorship from members of the Voices of Praise choir. The youth choir puts a particular focus on teaching and catechesis through music, as this is part of the natural journey of growth (and skepticism) in faith which young people go through. For this same reason, the repertoire of the youth choir is extremely varied, ranging from contemporary Catholic music at Mass (or even Christian music at non-Eucharistic services) to various traditional hymns during the holy seasons, even to ancient Latin chants. The youth choir serves the vigil mass of the fourth Sunday of every month (the Saturday evening before), and rehearses every week; in addition to serving Stations of the Cross in Lent, Palm Sunday during Holy Week, and the Christmas Eve Family Mass. The youth choir is predictably decimated by one third of its membership every year by school graduations and activities, and is therefore always looking for new members!
Voices of Praise is the SATB choir of St. Joseph Parish, accompanied by our historic Murray M. Harris Pipe Organ. The story of the pipe organ itself makes for quite a tale (suffice it to say that the only other Murray Harris in the Bay Area is at the Stanford Memorial Church). Voices of Praise serves the 10:00am mass on Sunday, and provides cantors for the 11:30am mass on Sunday. Additionally, the choir occasionally mounts concerts, serves penance services, Holy Week, and Christmas Midnight Mass. The Voices of Praise repertoire is broad, but gravitates toward SATB and polyphony pieces. As the choir sings from the choir loft, where the organ pipes and manuals are located, some members are trained as cantors to lead the congregation from the sanctuary. Voices of Praise rehearses every Thursday evening. The choir is always welcoming new members, and there are no auditions.
Son de Dios, the Spanish choir of St. Joseph Parish is a spirited and diverse group which serves the 1:00pm mass every Sunday. A wonderful, exciting, and diverse group, Son de Dios has recently produced a CD, and often mounts fundraisers and concerts in the area as invited. The Son de Dios repertoire, apart from being in Spanish, encompasses various styles and tempos. Some of the music provided by Son de Dios is written by the members themselves! Son de Dios rehearses every Tuesday, and is always welcoming of new members as well.