OFFERED BY THE DIOCESE OF BELLUNO-FELTRE
ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS BENEDICT XVI
Mirabello Castle, Lorenzago di Cadore
At the end of this wonderful presentation of the great musical culture of your Dolomite region, I can only say "thank you" to you with all my heart. Thank you for this beautiful culture.
I have remembered something St Augustine said: "Cantare amantis est". Love is a source of song. Song is an expression of love. In your singing I could sense this great love for the beauty of the Dolomite region, for this earth given to us by the Lord.
And in the "thanks", in the love for this earth, the love for the Creator is present and re-echoes, love for God who gave us this land, this life of joy; a joy we see once again in the light of our faith, which tells us that God loves us.
The popular culture, expressed in such a lofty way, is a jewel of our European identity that must be cultivated and developed. I thank all those who work to make this great European culture present, today and in the future.
Learning to sing, in choral singing, is not only an exercise of physical hearing and of the voice; it is also an education in inner hearing, the hearing of the heart, an exercise and an education in living and in peace.
Singing, whether in unison, in a choir and in all the choirs together, demands attention to the other, attention to the composer, attention to the conductor, attention to this whole that we call music and culture.
Hence, singing in a choir is an education in life, an education in peace, it is "walking together", as His Excellency said in reference to the Diocesan Synod.
The Bishop also referred to a sad and difficult period, 90 years ago, when these mountains were a barrier, a terrible blood-bathed scene of war.
Let us thank the Lord because today there is peace in our Europe and let us do all we can to encourage the growth of peace in all of us and throughout the world. I am sure that precisely this beautiful music is a commitment to peace and a help to living in peace.
I warmly thank all of you, the Bishop, the presenter and the conductors of the choirs. I would like to express my thanks to you in the Lord's Name, together with my Apostolic Blessing.
After imparting the Blessing:
Good night, thank you and goodbye. I wish you all a good holiday!
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