To all of our many friends, supporters, families, alumni, choirboys and visitors . . . welcome to our new website and this first Blog!
In 1982, when the choir was founded a postage stamp cost 20 cents, the movie E. T. opened and there were no cell phones, digital cameras or internet! Since that time, more than 5000 boys have passed through our choirs. This is a place where boys have a voice!
I’m reminded and comforted that singing in our choir hasn’t changed much over the last thirty-two years. Week after week, boys come together where there is order and safety. They are at liberty to use their God-given talents and abilities to collectively create music of great substance, worth and beauty, despite the frenzied, chaotic pace of the world outside. They’re not afraid to express their emotions through singing. Boys of all ages, sizes, faiths and desires continue to have a safe place to come and share in a group experience that engages their hearts as well as their minds. Boys simply love to sing with other boys!
But being a boy in today’s world is challenging at many levels. Emotions are often shut down in a ‘macho’ mentality. Boys are energetic and curious but also very sensitive to how they are viewed by others, especially their peers. They can be loud, boisterous, crude and insensitive to others . . . while at the same time be polite, emotional, helpful, responsible and excited to learn. You never really know which boy will show up to your rehearsal!
It has been my privilege over these years to watch each one of our choristers grow from a small, unsure choirboy into a confident, mature young man. And no matter what chosen field they end up pursuing . . . that assurance and confidence never leaves them!
Many things have indeed changed since 1982 . . . and yet the boys keep coming to audition and remain the one constant in our ever changing technological world.
I believe Father Edward J. Flanagan, who founded Father Flanagan’s Boy’s Home on December 10, 1917 sums up best, my feelings about all this: “There really are no bad boys . . . there are only bad environments, bad training, bad thinking and bad examples. Our young boys are our nation’s greatest wealth and no boy wants to be bad – give them a chance with positive examples and they will give a good account of themselves.”
I couldn’t agree more!