“Where there's music, there can be no evil.” Pope Francis quoted Miguel Cervantes to remind musicians of the value of their profession. He did so in this video message for the International Conference on Music organized by the Vatican.
The pope hopes this aspect of social life will flourish once more after the pandemic, and that “we can soon return to singing, playing and enjoying music together.”
“My thoughts go out to all those who have been affected: to the musicians, who have seen their lives and professions disrupted by the demands of distancing; to those who have lost their jobs and social contact; to those who have had to cope, in difficult contexts, with the necessary training, education and community life.”
The pope also reminded musicians that music, including dance, can lead to new paths of service and evangelization.
“Dear musicians, the common challenge is to listen to each other. In the liturgy we are invited to listen to the Word of God. The Word is our text, our main text. The community is our context.”
He also leaves musicians with a question: Is the silence we live empty or are we listening?
“Is it empty or are we in the process of listening? Will we allow, afterward, the emergence of a new song? May the text and context, now present in a new form, stimulate us to resume our journey together, because the unity of hearts is made deeper by the unity of voices.”
The pope made reference to composers like Palestrina and Bach to highlight the Bible's influence on “countless musical expressions, including fundamental pages in the history of music.”
Daniel Díaz Vizzi