By Paul McMullen and Emily Rosenthal
The Mid-Atlantic Congress for pastoral leaders, which will include a keynote speech from Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, the archbishop of Manila, is set for Feb. 15-17. It won’t be the only large gathering of Catholics at the Baltimore Hilton in 2018, when the city will serve as host to two national conventions.
More than 1,700 musicians are expected at the annual convention of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians (NPM) July 9-13.
Berta Sabrio, pastoral associate at St. Francis of Assisi in Fulton, and Lynn Trapp, director of liturgy and music at St. Joseph in Cockeysville, have been involved with the organization for more than 30 years. They are co-chairing the event which, for the first time in its 40-year history, is being held in Charm City.
Sabrio and Trapp are striving to make the 41st convention the best yet; Sabrio described it as a first of its kind, taking place in the Premier See, the first diocese in the U.S. The convention will sponsor multiple efforts to aid the local and wider community, including making meals for Our Daily Bread Hot Meal Program in Baltimore.
“We have decided that we want to leave Baltimore better than when we came,” said Sabrio.
Participants will focus on this year’s theme of “Praise, Grow, Serve” as they immerse in workshops focusing on topics such as the liturgy and cantoring, and in tours of the city exploring religious heritage sites, Catholic liturgical spaces and an “organ crawl.” An emerging leaders track will be offered for newly-hired pastoral musicians, designed to teach the non-musical nuts and bolts of their ministry.
“The name does bear pastoral musicians, but it’s much more far-reaching,” Trapp said. “The musicians take their music to the liturgy, which then extends to the justice of the world.”
On average, 40 percent of NPM participants are from the host city; Sabrio and Trapp hope to increase that percentage, and want local parish musicians to take advantage of the opportunities that will be offered in their backyard. The convention is designed for all levels of musicians, and any ministers (even non-musicians) are welcome.
Trapp’s pastor at St. Joseph is Monsignor Richard B. Hilgarther, the director of Ecclesial Mission and Identity for the NPM.
Knights of Columbus
The Knights of Columbus will revisit an important part of its history Aug. 7-9, when it holds its 136th annual Supreme Convention in Baltimore. The Knights last met here in 1989.
Archbishop William E. Lori is supreme chaplain of the men’s fraternal organization. It was founded in New Haven, Conn., in 1882 by Father Michael J. McGivney, who studied at St. Mary’s Seminary and was ordained in 1877 by then-Archbishop James Gibbons at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, both in Baltimore.
Approximately 1,600 Knights attended last year’s convention in St. Louis, when they pledged $2 million to restore a Christian town in Iraq that was destroyed by the Islamic State.
For more information about the NPM, visit npm.org
For more information about the Knights, visit kofc.org
For more information about the MAC, visit midatlanticcongress.org