Monday, April 21, 2008

Messengers of Christ

Due to the generosity of my bishop, I was able to attend the Youth Rally at St. Joseph Seminary in Yonkers NY during Pope Benedict XVI's visit to the USA. This is one small part of a series of posts about my experience. Please check back for more updates.

Before the Pope arrived there was a concert that began at 10:30 and ended around 4. I feel as though it might be worth while to give an account of some of the performances, and I'd like to start out with one of my favorites: Messengers of Christ (MOC).

I'm quite honest when I say that I don't really like rap and that when Christians try to rap it is usually a disaster that is (deservedly) made fun of. It simply isn't impressive to me (or anyone) unless its done as a satire, like you know you're a dork trying to rap. Well, I was shown otherwise a little before noon the day of the rally. The Messengers of Christ are for real. They are talented and I think almost everyone enjoyed what they had to offer. As the lead singer, a priest from the Bronx named Fr. Espaillat*, came out in his Cassock I knew these guys were at least going to entertain. And boy did they. Here is a short clip:
After this song Fr. Espaillat* went out to the edge of the stage and rather effectively preached the Sacrament of Reconciliation. He urged everyone to go and from what I hear, confessional lines were fairly long. I would have loved to have gotten more with my camera but I had to save space for pictures of the Pope. Then they sang another song which was my favorite of their (sadly short) set. I think its called Forgive Me, but the spanish name might be Perdoname.The video, of course, doesn't do anything justice but the quality of music was excellent. The band was good. The lyrics (as far as I could tell) were good. The showmanship was good. I'm looking forward to good things out of this group, and I think they need to come to Los Angeles really really soon. Seriously, these guys (and girls) need to be taken seriously.

UPDATE: I found an article on Fr. Espaillat online that is worth reading. And it turns out I have another video from the song mentioned above. Yes, he's doing an Examination of Conscience. Unfortunately, its really tough to pick up the lyrics from the song in the video but its still pretty good.


*I think Fr. Espaillat might be one of the priests in the Vocations video Fishers of Men put together by Grassroots films. I'm pretty sure he's the guy that says, "You have to be a real Man if you want to be a priest."

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