On Saturday, March 18th, the Legionary brothers, directed by Fr. Nathan Torrey, LC, opened their doors to the public and took all in attendance on a journey through the Stations of the Cross. The seminarians take to the stage two times a year. The annual Christmas Concert is full of joy, with songs from the choir and different bands sharing music from their home countries. The Passion Performance is more of a quiet contemplation of Jesus’ love for us.
Fr. Nathan welcomed everyone in attendance and spoke of the gift of Lent as a time to look at suffering with faith and the Lord’s immense love for each of us as he experienced his Passion. He also joked that the performance is a good motivator to get the brothers to practice the songs for Holy Week!
Each station came alive through music, poetry, and reflection. The LC Cheshire Choir performed each song flawlessly with grace and purity of sound. Their harmonies blended seamlessly, creating a symphony of sound that filled the room.
The brothers’ talented media team did a fantastic job operating the cameras and coordinating the visual backdrop with images of the stations and the verses of the hymns in Latin and English to help all grasp the complete meaning. Thanks to them, we are able to share a video playlist for each station for those that missed the event. Each video is a gem as the brothers’ passion for music, and the Lord poured out in every note they sang.
In addition, many of the brothers prepared thoughtful and moving reflections. Br. Pedro offered St. Joseph as a model for our Lenten journey. Br. Francisco wrote a meditation entitled “Falling,” portraying how Jesus is falling for us. “Christ falls like lightning, bends the knee, my God, my God, you fell for me.” Br. Sterling relates the anger and confusion of Simon the Cyrene to an experience he had and how it made him a better man.
Novice Brothers John Paul, Keirnan, and Christian poignantly sang the Servant Song in 3-part harmony. Followed by another trio consisting of Brothers Anthony and Daniel, with Fr. Nathan singing Christe Lux in rounds. Br. Anthony introduced the song with, “the true light is willing to fight for us as He rises after each fall.”
Br. Jose brought us to tears with a powerful performance of the Crucifixion and the soldiers’ actions as it occurs. While Br Emmanuel softly contrasted the light and darkness of Jesus’ birth, life, and death, followed by the LC brothers’ rendition of Psalm 22 in song.
The audience was mesmerized, their eyes were fixed on the stage, and they were entirely absorbed by Brother Juan Pablo’s reflection from Mary’s point of view as Jesus was taken down from the cross and placed in her arms.
After the LC Cheshire Choir’s final song, Fr. Nathan invited all the brothers to the stage to sing a hymn they often sing during the Celebration of the Eucharist in their chapel. “Jesus Lord, I ask for mercy; let me not implore in vain.”
We are so grateful to the brothers for sharing their gifts with us. It was a performance that will be remembered for years to come, a tribute to the power of music and the beauty of brotherhood.
We will release a video daily for each station leading up to Holy Thursday on the LC Cheshire Facebook and YouTube channels. In addition, on these channels, the brothers will live stream the Holy Triduum services for all those unable to attend their parish services. The live stream videos will also be available for viewing following the services.