Most people who know me, are aware of my love for music and singing, combined with my disciplined prayer life. When I say ‘disciplined’ prayer life, I mean a life of prayer that is consistent and united with the prayers of other faithful members of the Church. I pray the daily ‘Divine Office’, which is a uniform way of praying while using the ‘Liturgy of the Hours.’ This is something I have practised since 1998, when I was first introduced to daily prayer within a community. Learning to chant those prayers was the most beautiful lesson I had ever experienced and my love for singing and chanting has grown since. From learning to teaching is a steady and common process when one is passionate about what they know and, hence, I could not help but share my love for prayer with others.

It starts with a deep desire to know God, to love God, to serve God, and to one day be with Him in Heaven. Yes, the basic tenet of our Catholic Teaching on ‘why’ God made man. This desire grows into an intimate relationship with our Creator through communication with Him in prayer. Not only do we pray in words, but we also pray in thoughts, actions and deeds. To adore the One True God is as simple as beholding the majestic and breathtaking beauty of Creation that surrounds us. When words are not enough, the Spirit of God will embrace our soul and speak on our behalf with sighs so deep that they are sometimes expressed in music or song.

There are times when I am filled with so much love for God, my entire being wants to sing aloud in songs of praise and worship that pour out uncontrollably. My family can attest to that! Songs of praise and worship fill my heart with so much joy that I cannot explain their effect on me except by smiling unceasingly. How can song do that to a soul unless a soul is connected to the Fountain and Source of all Joy? Or, perhaps vice versa, singing can achieve this connection which will then lead to a deeper and more intimate prayer life. I have to admit, when I’m tired and don’t have the energy to pray, I can always find comfort in listening to spiritual songs or church hymns that speak to my inner self that may be struggling with some unresolved emotion. Singing brings out the joy as well as the pain in my heart, so I find myself either smiling graciously or crying like a baby.

God is Good. There’s no doubt in my mind that He turns all things unto good for those who love Him, so I am not afraid of emotions or situations beyond my control. Singing reminds me that I can let go and let God take over, as He wills. Singing lifts my heart to the heights of Heaven when my heart feels like it’s buried underground. Singing calms my restless spirit when I am disturbed or troubled. One of the saints (I think it was St. Augustine) said that “he who sings, prays twice.” I believe this is true because when I’m singing praises to God, I am thinking only of God and not being distracted as I sometimes would be when reading or praying vocally. I guess you could say it’s like mental prayer being prayed aloud with music.

This may not resonate with everyone, but I love all types of spiritual music and song, whether it be Gregorian chants, Syriac melodies, or the old English hymns we sang from “The Living Parish Hymn Book.” Even some of those written by our Hillsong brethren have empowered me and led me deeper into my Catholic sacramental prayer life. If it’s from the heart and intended to glorify the One True God, then a prayer through song is heard by God as clearly as any other, if not louder and clearer than any other. Such beautiful melodies of praise and worship cannot but lift our hearts and minds to Heaven, as though united with the choir of angels who adore His True Presence for all eternity.

Amazing Mercy:

Songs & Stories of Hope

– Anna Nuzzo & Jeannie Ewing

(Full Album – MP3 Download)

Track Listing

1. Introduction

2. Felicity’s Gift

3. “Come, Spirit of God”

4. Making Amends

5. “Windfall of Grace”

6. A Face Only a Mother Could Love

7. “The Face That I Seek”

8. The Miraculous Medal

9. “Mary, My Mother”

10. Do You Trust Me?

11. “Amazing Mercy”

12. Saved By An Angel

13. “St. Michael Prayer Song”

14. Butterflies and Resurrections

15. “Alleluia Is Our Song”

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