We opened with Veni Sancte Spiritus as prayerful chant, begun on the heart beat. By focusing on our collective heart and listening to one another, we wove a tapestry of sound that filled the room even at its most quiet iteration.

Welcome to Emergent Christianity, this year’s Emerging-Catholic offering from Richard Rohr and the Center for Action and Contemplation.

“Slowly blooms a rose within/slowly blooms a rose within.”

As new layers of harmony are added, I can’t help but be who I am–more caught with the sounds than the message. However, I have some ideas about chants…ideas that seem to go against what I was taught as an evangelical. I would love to lead a chant like this with enough voices to cover every harmony (very softly, of course–not showing off voices, but allowing the notes to sing themselves), but for much longer than we sang them today. This is the sort of chant should continue beyond comfort, to and past understanding, to a place where something deeper might be reached by the supplicant.

There is something almost narcotic about this kind of music. It can lull or awake. Will you allow the moment to sweep you away?