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Milford parish brings sacred arts to community

By KATIE LEFEBVRE, Globe staff reporter
(Email Katie)

MILFORD - “The Arts at St. Joseph’s” is a new program that will launch in April at St. Joseph Church in Milford.

“It is for the whole area,” said Father Thomas Flanagan, pastor at St. Joseph’s. “People not from our church are welcome to attend the events. We are hoping that it will give exposure of our parish and parish center to the wider public. The church, historically, has been a great supporter of the arts – music and painting.”

He is looking at this new program as a way to “expand the horizons of the parishioners.”

First event
The kick-off event for “The Arts at St. Joseph’s” will be a concert by John Moore, a well-known performer with local roots. He was born and raised in Milford and currently performs with the New York Metropolitan Opera.

Moore will present a concert from 4:30 to 6 p.m. on April 1 at St. Joseph Church. He will sing music relative to Holy Week and other sacred music.

“I asked him if he would be interested in doing a concert for us at the church,” said Father Flanagan. “It has a two-fold purpose. It will kick-off ‘The Arts at St. Joseph’s’ and it is also a concert that he is donating completely to our youth group.”

The high school youth group is planning a mission trip to Malawi at the end of July 2012.

A wine and cheese reception will follow for all who attend.

Sacred arts
The committee made up of Father Thomas Flanagan, Wynette Moore, Karess Knudtson, Connie Jones and Irene McCoy conceptualized this new offering for the Lakes Region.

“We have many concert, performance and artistic opportunities in the Lakes area,” said Father Flanagan. “I thought something that would be an additional component to that would be something related to the sacred arts.”

He presented the idea to a committee of people who are involved in art and wondered about creating a program at St. Joseph’s.

“As committee members we began with a brainstorming session to explore what we could do to enhance our parish community and the community at large through art,” said Knudtson. “We laid out a calendar of possible events including music and fine art venues over the next year or so and then got busy planning our first event, the concert by John Moore.”

Father Flanagan said the events will be held either in the church or in the parish center.

One area Knudtson has specifically been involved in is the promotional aspect of the concert.  She designed the posters, tickets and concert program. 

“It has really been great to see the event come to fruition and we are all looking forward to April 1,” said Knudtson. “Our parish has so many talented and dedicated people, we are truly blessed.  As artists and art lovers within that community, we invite the community at large to come and appreciate the arts that have been and continue to be such a crucial part of church.”

She said in continuing to plan additional events, she is excited to highlight “the beauty and artistic nature of our church and surrounding churches.  It will be fascinating to see how God may inspire area artists in events to come.”

Future programs
The program will feature at least three artistic presentations a year. Other programs being planned for the 2012-2013 season are a presentation on stained glass and an exhibition of church life in Dickinson County with paintings and photos of the life of area churches.

“We might be able to get someone to come and give a presentation on how stained glass is made,” said Father Flanagan. “Then we would like to talk about the stained glass windows in our church.”

Tickets for the semi-formal concert are $20 and can be ordered by calling St. Joseph Parish’s business office at (712) 338-2274 from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Watch for advertising about future programs. Ideas about other program possibilities are welcomed. Contact the church for more information at (712) 338-2274.

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