Franciscan Sisters December Song: ‘For God so Loved the World’ by VocalEssence

Paul Keggington

December 01, 2012

Watching, waiting, and wondering in December 2012  Seasons of Advent and  Christmas, Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity feature conductor Philip Brunelle and VocalEssence Ensemble Singers in “Ballad Third and Fourth Verse and Refrain “For God so loved the world…”

“To Francis Christ was substance, impluse, sense, light, and life.; he was imprinted by fire in his memory, intellect and passion; he was united and secretly conformed to the cross deep within his morrow.” (The Book of Chronicles of the Trbulations of the Order of the Lesser One) May this inspired music move us to perseveringly fulfill all that God desires for us.

A further exploration of the American choral experience is reflected in the rich variety of music that completes this CD–ten additional selections by composers acknowledged as masters by the National Endowment of the Arts through its nationwide initiative, American Masterpieces: Choral Music…All of the composers represented here display a passion for writing for voices and bringing the text to life through music. We are thrilled to perform their music and know you will enjoy it!

-Philip Brunelle, Artistic Director, VocalEssence

Click here to purchase other spiritually moving songs by this talented mid-west choir.

About VocalEssence Ensemble Singers

Minnesota is home to one of the true international gems in choral music – the VocalEssence Ensemble Singers.  This 32-voice professional chorus, directed by VocalEssence founder Philip Brunelle and associate conductor Sigrid Johnson, is a beloved national treasure that has been enjoyed by millions in Minnesota, around the country, and indeed, around the world.

Recipients of worldwide acclamation, the Ensemble Singers were declared by The Oxford Times (UK) to “have a blend that could — and should — be the envy of every choir in the business.” Founded in 1991, the Ensemble Singers are applauded for their “superbly blended sound” (Birmingham Post, UK) and “exemplary technique” (Minneapolis Star Tribune) and lauded by the Times of London as “polished, bright and brilliantly balanced.”

Over the past 20 years, the Ensemble Singers have played a prominent role in the nationally acclaimed A Prairie Home Companion, entertaining public radio listeners as the “house choir.”

Striving always to create perfection in their choral sound, the Ensemble Singers genuinely engage the audience with their vivid personality and expressive singing. Their tremendous talent enables the Ensemble Singers to be equally at ease with works dating from the Baroque era to the modern day, approaching each musical endeavor with originality and freshness. For more information, visit

About Philip Brunelle

Philip Brunelle, Artistic Director and founder of VocalEssence, is an internationally renowned conductor, choral scholar and performer. Believing that listeners and musicians alike must experience music of many genres and styles, he has worked enthusiastically—and tirelessly—to expand audiences for rarely heard works of the past and worthwhile new music. In addition, to date VocalEssence has commissioned more than 150 works.  Philip has conducted symphonies (New York Philharmonic, Seattle Symphony, and Minnesota Orchestra among others) as well as choral festivals and operas on six continents.

Over the past decade Philip has been deeply involved with the International Federation of Choral Music (IFCM). He served as president of the Sixth World Symposium on Choral Music held in Minneapolis (2002), was on the Artistic Committee for the Eighth Symposium, held in Denmark (2008), and the Ninth Symposium, held in Argentina (2011). He is a Vice President of the IFCM Board and is now serving as Executive Director for the 2014 World Choral Symposium to be held in Seoul, South Korea.

Philip holds five honorary doctorates, was invested as an Honorary Member of the Order from the British Empire (MBE) in 2005 for his services to music, and Commander of the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit in 2007. He has also been honored by the governments of Sweden, Hungary, and Mexico.



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