Behind the Scenes of History at the Vatican – Hereford Cathedral Choir Perform at Papal Mass

​First Anglican choir to sing at Papal Mass in 500 Years

​Pope Francis' ecumenical program of outreach to encourage church diversity has included an invitation to Hereford Cathedral Choir to make history by being the first Anglican choir to sing at a Papal Mass since the English Reformation in the 16th century.  The choir performed alongside the choir of the Sistene Chapel at Saint Peter's Basilica on June 27th, 2018.  The event is part of the ​program leading up to the Holy Mass held on June 29th, 2018 for the feast day of Apostles Saint Peter and Saint Paul.  The Holy Mass ​was one of the biggest events of the year at the Vatican and the choir also performed there in Saint Peter's Square.

​We're extremely fortunate to have a behind the scenes look through amazing photographs taken by Tenor Choral Scholar Mark Murphy Laseter, who has kindly given us permission to profile them. Mark will shortly be moving on to study for his Masters in Sacred Music at the University of Notre Dame.

Hereford Cathedral Choir and the Sistene Chapel Choir

​A truly historic occasion for both choirs

​Breathtaking majesty of the Vatican

​Orderly prayerful line waiting to ​go into St. Peter's square

​Michelangelo's famous paintings on the ceiling of the Sistene Chapel

Hereford Cathedral Choir at the Vatican

​Members of Hereford Cathedral Choir at the Vatican

​Cardinals ​making their way to the Chapel

Mark Murphy Laseter Saint Peters Square

​Mark's selfie!

Hereford Choir Member Running Late

Member of Hereford Cathedral Choir running a little late!

Choral Procession

​Choir heading to the Holy Mass

​His Holiness Pope Francis

​Mark was fortunate enough to capture wonderful photographs of His Holiness Pope Francis before he led the Holy Mass at Saint Peter's Square, The Vatican.

Pope Francis arrives for Mass of Saint Peter and Saint Paul

Pope Francis arrives for Holy Mass

​The embrace of mutual friendship and respect

​Holy Mass of Apostles Saint Peter and Saint Paul

​You can ​watch the entire Holy Mass in Saint Peter's square for the Apostles Saint Peter and Saint Paul held on June 29th, 2018, courtesy of the Vatican.

​The transcript of the homily of His Holiness Pope Francis at the Holy Mass and Blessing of the Sacred Pallium for the New Metropolitan Archbishops on the solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles​.

View homily

​Do you agree with Pope Francis in reaching out to other denominations and inviting them to participate in Holy Mass?


​All photographs reproduced by kind permission of Mark Murphy Laseter.

​Statement by Hereford Cathedral - Official Hereford Cathedral visit statement and Choir Perform For The Pope

​News article by BBC News - BBC News report about Hereford Cathedral Choir visit to Rome

Author: Mark Lowe

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  • Walt says:

    Yes, I do agree with Pope Francis in reaching out to other denominations. It is wise to include all people. Especially, in today’s complex political and social environ. We should always do what our Lord would do like. I am sure He would concur.

  • mellie says:

    That’s a VERY bad thing to do. It was not a “reformation”, it was a revolt, and they all are still revolting.

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