Detroit choir heading to the Vatican | Michigan Radio

Detroit choir heading to the Vatican

Mar 24, 2015

St. Peter's Basilica. A Detroit choir has been invited to perform before the pope in Rome.
Credit Wolfgang Stuck

Pope Francis may not have plans to stop in Michigan when he visits the U.S. next fall, but a Detroit choir is planning to go see him.

The Archdiocesan Chorus of Detroit already had plans to visit Rome in January when they received an invitation to sing in a mass at the Vatican.

And yes, His Holiness will definitely be there.

Joe Balistreri, the choir's director, said the group will perform on the Feast of the Epiphany.

“For Italians, [the Feast of the Epiphany] is as big as Christmas, so we’re very, very honored and humbled to receive that invitation," he said.

The chorus will sing a prelude before singing portions of the Mass. 

Balistreri said the invitation is the highest honor a visiting choir can receive.

"The choir couldn't believe it at first [when I told them]." he said.  "There was sort of a hushed and awed reaction, and then everybody was cheering."

Balistreri said Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron is trying to rearrange his schedule to accompany the group.