|The year 2010 saw the production and release of two new CDs by the consecrated women.|
By Cathy Floro
The consecrated women recently released a new album,
Strength from Heaven, which contains songs inspired by the psalms. (Listen
to sample tracks here.) You may have heard their CDs,
but have you ever wondered how these CDs came to
“Why not record our favorite chapel songs on a
CD?” was the question Jill Swallow asked several years ago
when she started her formation in Greenville. It was an
opportunity for people to learn more about their faith, listen
to healthy music, and receive the Gospel message.
Swallow’s question was
answered by the recording of a CD, In His Presence,
that marked the beginning of the collection of music now
available from the consecrated women. Strength from Heaven is now
the fifth volume in the Regnum Christi consecrated women’s series
of sacred music which includes favorite chapel music, Marian hymns,
songs in the Spirit of St. Paul, and a Christmas
CD. There are also three CD’s of contemporary music, soon
to be followed by a children’s CD and another CD
of original compositions.
Talents in use
When God calls someone to
a consecrated vocation, like in any vocation he calls that
person with all that they are—including any musical talents they’ve
been blessed with.
God’s talents are definitely put to good
use. “We need to use our talents for the kingdom,”
said Swallow, “and when we do, God is able to
touch many lives.”
“I thought that I would be giving
up music,” said Emily Roman, a senior at Mater Ecclesiae
College who was previously very involved with the symphonic and
marching band programs in her native North Carolina. “But God
had bigger plans for me.”
Now Roman finds herself not
only involved with the recording of CDs, but also directing
the music program at Mater Ecclesiae College, conducting the college’s
choir, and composing original songs.
Marcela de Maria, a consecrated woman
in Rome, wrote all of the songs in the July
2010 release I Can Love You Still. The CD was
based on the theme that when we unite our experiences—especially
our trials and suffering—to Christ on the cross, God is
able to bring redemptive value to our every action. This
positive message is able to reach many through the music.
The CD projects have been quite a family affair. “Recording
a CD involves a lot of time spent together learning
music, rehearsing, and travelling to the studio,” said Cathy Floro,
vocalist and violinist for some songs on Strength from Heaven.
“I’ve definitely grown closer to my consecrated sisters who have
also been involved with this!”
The psalm CD has even provoked
some help from “extended” family members.
Barbara Hampson, a Spanish
professor at Mater Ecclesiae College, had heard that the CD
would need a violin accompaniment. She quickly put Floro in
touch with Dennis McCarten, a relative who also happened to
be a violin-maker. McCarten was very willing to lend a
high-quality violin to Cathy for the recording.
The sound engineers at
the studio even began to take the projects as their
own. On one of the more upbeat songs on Strength
from Heaven, sound engineer Jon Gonsalves decided to lend a
hand by playing guitar and bass during the refrain of
“It’s been quite an experience to see how the
CD has developed over time,” said Yvonne Nuxoll, pianist and
a vocalist for Strength from Heaven.
More to come
are a great way for the consecrated women to give
and also to receive. They provide a huge help in
their cost of living. “Not only do the CDs help
others,” said Maritza Silva, the business manager for Mater Ecclesiae
College, “the CD sales help us!”
2010 saw the production and
release of two new CDs by the consecrated women, but
the story isn’t over for Mater Ecclesiae College music. Two
more CDs are in the works and are set to
be released in 2011.
Buy CDs and listen to sample
tracks of the CDs online and on iTunes.
ways to support the consecrated women can be found at