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St. Vincent de Paul Catholic School choir members and their families gathered under Michelangelo's Last Judgment in the Sistine Chapel.
Over the holidays, the St. Vincent de Paul Catholic School choir took a singing pilgrimage to Rome. During the trip, the SVdP choir had a papal audience and sang with other Catholic youth choirs from 35 countries around the world.
On New Year's Day, the choirs sang at a mass celebrated by Pope Francis at St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican. The group of fourth through eighth grade SVdP students were the only group from Houston performing at the New Year's Day Mass at the Vatican.
One of the other highlights of the trip was a private, nighttime visit to the Sistine Chapel. Most of the students and their families flew to Rome on Dec. 26 and returned to Houston on Jan. 2.
Isabella Bernal, a senior at the High School for the Performing and Visual arts and former SVdP student, participated in the trip too. She sang a beautiful solo of "O Holy Night" during a joint concert of SVdP and St. Francis of Assisi Middle-School Choir from Ann Arbor, Michigan. The concert was held at the Chiesa di Sant Eustachio (Church of St. Eustace), behind the Pantheon near the Piazza Navona in the historic center of Rome.
SdVP students who enjoyed their Italian adventure included: Edgar Castro, Katelyn Fiegel, Caroline Franco, Darren Jimenez, Dylan Jimenez, Ella Joseph, Maddie Kaelin, Olivia Keville, SVdP parishioner Vienna Kananen, Jolie Laporte, Isabelle Louis, Alex Lopez, Natalia Lopez, Kevin Pedroza, Ava Robson, Camille Schneider, Lili Shore, Caroline Steely, Isabel Trombley, Kathleen Vojvodic, Denise Walsh and Anna Marie Zepeda. Plus, SVdP siblings who sang with the choir included third graders Oscar Catro and Natalie Pedroza.
The incredible experience was well worth the jet lag.