The Full Story
In 2015, Celisa embarked on a spiritual pilgrimage through France and Spain. One of the most influential spots for her was the Grotto in Lourdes, France. According to Catholic tradition, Mary, the mother of God, appeared to a young girl named Bernadette in this grotto, which has a spring with healing waters. Many miracles have been documented about people who have been healed after bathing in the waters. One of the many beautiful aspects of this holy place is its reverence for the handicapped and sick. Almost every area of the shrine is barrier free, and the wheelchair-bound lead every procession.
People from all over the world come to Lourdes seeking healing of various kinds; emotional, physical, and spiritual needs are all valid. While spending several days at the Grotto, Celisa experienced a profound sense of peace and prayerful discernment. She was struck with a deeper love for the Catholic Church and a desire to honor the sick and disabled. Ultimately, she left with a deep inspiration to musically document the beauty and love she experienced while on pilgrimage there.
Many tracks on the album are chants and hymns Celisa heard while in Lourdes. Others are lesser-known Marian vocal works that add variety to the collection. All the works are dedicated to and inspired by Mary, Mother of God. While every piece was originally composed for voice, Celisa and Helen explore the rich history and versatility of this music by creating arrangements for a more contemporary ensemble. It is their hope that this music elicits tranquility and contemplation in situations when they are needed most.