Concert to benefit school families affected by hurricane

A concert featuring liturgical musician and composer David Haas will raise funds to benefit school communities in the Diocese of Camden on Friday, Jan. 25. Performing alongside Haas is cantor and composer Lori True.

The concert will take place at 7:30 p.m. at Christ our Light Catholic Community in Cherry Hill. The following morning, Haas and True will lead a music workshop from 8:30 a.m. to noon in the same venue on the role of the laity in the church post Vatican II. The workshop is open to the public.

Haas has authored a vast amount of familiar liturgical music and is a prominent name in contemporary hymnals. Some of his well-known titles include, “We Are Called,” “You Are Mine,” “We Have Been Told” and “Blest Are They.” Together with True, he performs across the country and leads a summer program for young musicians called Music Ministry Alive.

“Our family has been inspired by the music of David Haas for years,” said concert organizer Patricia Gardner. “We wanted to share that with the diocese, and at the same time use this opportunity to serve an important cause.”

All proceeds of the concert and workshop will benefit the Hurricane Sandy Assistance Program, a fund developed by the Diocese of Camden in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Though some parochial schools were physically damaged, the bulk of the storm’s impact was inflicted on diocesan families, said Nicholas Regina, executive director of Catholic Schools for the Diocese of Camden.

The goal of the fund is to help families keep their children in diocesan schools and “weather the very difficult couple of months after the storm as they get back on their feet,” Regina said. This means providing assistance with everything from winter coats to tuition in communities, such as Atlantic City and other coastal towns, where some families lost everything, he said.

Members of the Camden Catholic High School liturgical and select choir will perform alongside Haas and True in the concert on several of the duo’s original compositions.

Director of the liturgical choir, Nancy Werner-Kaiser, said she is excited for the students to have not only a musical but spiritual experience alongside the prominent musicians.

“The cool thing about this kind of gathering is…the people who come love the music and they sing their hearts out,” she said. “You’ll leave there walking on air.”

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.davidhaasbenefitconcert.com

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