Nov. 28 2016, 6:26 p.m. – THE UST Central Seminary, the inter-diocesan seminary of the Philippines, marked its 88th anniversary with a concert that featured a performance by the seminary’s Psalterion choir last Nov.26.
Central Seminary Rector Fr. Quirico Pedregosa Jr, O.P. said the concert commemorated the Dominican Jubilee and the recently concluded Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy.
“On a personal note, we priests and seminarians of the Central Seminary would like to remember with joy and in gratitude, God’s divine mercy in our lives. It is the God of Mercy that has called us to serve his people,” he said in his opening remarks.
The 29-member choir, conducted by musical director Domino Marcos, opened the concert with a soulful rendition of “Ave Maria.” This was followed by Fr. Manoling Francisco, S.J.’s performance of “I Will Sing Forever.”
Psalterion’s wide-ranging repertoire included Filipino folk song “Sitsiritsit” and Zambian Christian song “Bonse Aba.”
The choir sang the “Dominican Blessing” as a tribute to its benefactors and serenaded the audience with Filipino Christmas songs like “Diwa ng Pasko” and “Ang Pasko Ay Sumapit.”
Marcos, who has worked with Psalterion for four years, said he felt “very proud” working with the choir.
“It’s always my privilege to be part of this choir. With the seminarians, it’s really heartwarming. They are really bringing me, besides the joy, spiritual growth,” Marcos said.
“We tried to pick the best songs that could possibly represent my four years here in Psalterion,” he said.
For the intermission, Fr. Martin Bai of the Diocese of Zhao Xin in China delighted the crowd with a piano rendition of the Pirates of the Caribbean theme song.
The Central Seminary Quintet and Kenneth Rey Parsad, who sang the psalms for Pope Francis’ Mass at Manila Cathedral last year, also performed.
The theme “Benedicere,” which came from the Dominican motto, means “to bless” in Latin.
UST Central Seminary President Christian Dakila said the proceeds of the concert would go to the Central Seminary Foundation.
The Central Seminary was proclaimed the country’s inter-diocesan seminary on Nov. 27, 1928 by the Vatican’s Sacred Congregation on Universities and Seminaries.