Sacred Music


To view the Sunday Mass Leaflets, including the music, readings, and prayers, please click here.

Calling all Singers!

The Parish Choir is seeking enthusiastic parishioners interested in participating in the Sunday celebration of Holy Mass. We welcome all voice types. If you have experience singing in a choir, great! If you do not have experience and would like to try, we welcome you warmly. We rehearse Thursday evenings, beginning in September, from 7-9PM, and sing at the 11AM Solemn Mass on Sundays.

Do you play a string, brass, or woodwind instrument? We would like to form a Chamber Ensemble to collaborate with the Parish Choir on special occasions. The rehearsal schedule will be determined based upon the availability of the participants.

If you are interested in the music program, please contact the Organist and Director of Sacred Music at, or call 504 340 0444. You may also speak to him after any weekend Mass.

The Program of Sacred Music at Saint John Bosco Catholic Church exists for the glorification of God Almighty and the edification and sanctification of the faithful. Our parish strives to be firmly rooted in the Catholic liturgical movement usually called “The Reform of the Reform,” meaning that while we do not celebrate the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite (Traditional Latin Mass) we are deeply committed to the solemn and devout celebration of the Ordinary Form, in fidelity to the best liturgical and musical traditions of the Church. The regular use of Latin and English plainchant and renaissance polyphony, the singing of the Propers (in Latin an English) at each Sunday Mass, as well as the vigorous congregational singing of traditional hymnody within the vernacular celebration of the Ordinary Form are essential features of our Program of Sacred Music. Our parish embraces the integral role that sacred music plays in drawing the faithful more deeply into worship, with the awe and reverence that is worthy of the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The Roman Liturgy enjoys a long and glorious tradition of sacred music, which Vatican II calls “a treasure of inestimable value, greater even than any other art.” Sacred chant and polyphony, along with sacred organ music are a regular part of the liturgies at Saint John Bosco Church.

We have a congregation that loves to worship God through the beautiful, traditional hymnody of the Christian Church. As well, the Church directs us that Gregorian chant, “being especially suited to the Roman Liturgy,” is to have “pride of place.” Therefore, the Propers, that is the Entrance, Offertory, and Communion Chants, are sung at each weekend celebration of the Holy Mass from either the Graduale Romanum (Latin), or the Proper of the Mass for Sundays and Solemnities, a collection of vernacular (English) settings by Father Samuel F. Weber, O.S.B., of the Benedict XVI Institute for Sacred Music and Divine Worship, in the Archdiocese of San Francisco. Additionally, the organ and choir serve as an integral part of the music program.

The Parish Choir sings the Solemn Mass at 11 o’clock, each Sunday, September through the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi), in late May or June, as well as for all Feasts and Solemnities.  Their repertoire encompasses nearly eleven centuries of music, from medieval chant to renaissance polyphony, to new choral compositions that are consonant with the American Cathedral tradition. A cantor from the choir leads the congregation in the Hymns, Acclamations, and Mass Ordinary at the Sung Masses each weekend. The Parish Choir rehearses on Thursday evenings, at 7 o’clock, in the Don Bosco Center.

The Schola Cantorum, or, Singing School, is a new choral ensemble which will sing periodically throughout the year. Regular rehearsals will focus on developing the singers’ tonal production, proper breathing techniques, and sight-singing abilities, while developing a repertoire consisting of simple, traditional chants, hymns, and polyphony.

Schola Sanctorum Angelorum, or, Choir of the Holy Angels, is the ensemble that prepares the music for the Solemn Mass at Midnight on Christmas. They rehearse for one hour each week, beginning the first week in November and continuing until Christmas. Additionally, the choir presents the parish’s annual Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols during the Fourth Week of Advent. Interested persons are encouraged to contact the Organist and Director of Sacred Music at, speak to him after any weekend Mass, or simply call the church office at 504 340 0444.

New members of the Parish Choir and the Schola Cantorum are always warmly welcomed. The ability to read music is not necessary. Only a commitment to regularly attend rehearsals and Sunday Mass is required.

Interested persons are encouraged to contact the Organist and Director of Sacred Music, speak to him after any weekend Mass, or simply call the church office at 504 340 0444.

Bis orat qui bene cantat.
“He who sings well prays twice.”

– attributed to St. Augustine of Hippo

Our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, wrote in his 2007 encyclical Sacramentum Caritatis:
Certainly as far as the liturgy is concerned, we cannot say that one song is as good as another. Generic improvisation or the introduction of musical genres which fail to respect the meaning of the liturgy should be avoided. As an element of the liturgy, song should be well integrated into the overall celebration. Consequently everything–texts, music, execution–ought to correspond to the meaning of the mystery being celebrated, the structure of the rite and the liturgical seasons. Finally, while respecting various styles and different and highly praiseworthy traditions, I desire that Gregorian chant be suitably esteemed and employed as the chant proper to the Roman liturgy (No. 42).
The Liturgy Documents: Music In Catholic Worship #36 states:
A well-trained choir adds beauty and solemnity to the liturgy and also assists and encourages the singing of the congregation. The Second Vatican Council, speaking of the choir, stated emphatically: “Choirs must be diligently promoted,” provided that “the whole body of the faithful may be able to contribute that active participation which is rightfully theirs.”
“At times the choir, within the congregation of the faithful and as part of it, will assume the role of leadership, while at other times it will retain its own distinctive ministry. This means that the choir will lead the people in sung prayer, by alternating or reinforcing the sacred song of the congregation, or by enhancing it with the addition of a musical elaboration. At other times in the course of liturgical celebration the choir alone will sing works whose musical demands enlist and challenge its competence.”