Opera singer shares the power of faith for artists today

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22 years ago John Paul II addressed a letter to the artists of the world expressing the power of art in advancing the Faith.

Today, his words remain influential, and continue to inspire artists around the world.

Hannah Magnelli is one of them. She is an opera singer, actress, and a devout Catholic. For her, John Paul II’s message remains a guiding light in her artistic career.

Professional Opera Singer and Actress
'That’s one of the things he discusses in his letter is: how are you going to use the gifts? Are you going to use it to glorify God or to glorify yourself. And of course in order to do that you have to have a good, solid foundation with your faith, increase your prayer life, and I think that’s what helped me in a field like this'.

For Magnelli, being an artist is more than just producing great works of art, it's about bringing the experience of God to others. 

Professional Opera Singer and Actress
It's very encouraging, it's a reminder to keep on the right path in glorifying God. I think that his letter helps an artist keep focused on God's intended beauty in art. 

'Beauty teaches us about God, the vocation of the artist is beauty and he discusses that in his letter'.

In his letter John Paul II recalls how art has the ability to reveal the beauty in the world around us, and in turn the presence of God. 

Professional Opera Singer and Actress
'If you think about it how many times have you listened to a song and you think ‘oh I feel like I’m listening to angels’ or ‘it’s heaven on Earth,’ and you use that imagination, all of a sudden you feel like this good presence or you feel that angels are singing to you and it has a positive reaction in God’s favor'.

As a former playwright, John Paul II was familiar with the spirit of the artist. His letter is an important reminder of the expression of God through beauty, and a powerful statement to artists and lovers of art alike. 

Justin McLellan

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