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This weekend, the Mother of God Contemporary Ensemble celebrates 50 years of music ministry. It has been a wonderful, holy, humbling and sometimes hilarious experience, and we feel so fortunate to have had this opportunity.

Most of us had no idea what we were getting ourselves into when we started singing and playing at church as teenagers. Post-Vatican II, we were trying to figure out what it meant to have a Mass that was suddenly more accessible—in our own language, both spoken and sung. What was our place in it? And what were the boundaries?

Admittedly, we were making it up as we went along. There was some great music and some really awful stuff that has deservedly fallen by the wayside. We learned a lot and we polished our skills. We also built lasting friendships and had a tremendous amount of fun.

One of the best parts of it is that you welcomed us and invited us to be part of the important moments in your lives—the weddings, anniversaries, First Communions, graduations and farewells. We have been so blessed to hear your voices joining with ours every Sunday and to support you in any way we can.

Although the pandemic has temporarily paused our twice-weekly gathering and thrown a monkey wrench into our plans to celebrate our milestone anniversary, we thought we’d commemorate the day with this music video (courtesy of Aaron Duesing). And we look forward to the day when we can all be together in church again. Until then, thank you so much for allowing us to pray with you in song for 50 years. Let’s keep it going!