On April 11, fifty-eight students and five teachers embarked on a trip of a lifetime. The St. Bonaventure’s College Senior Chamber Choir and Wind Ensemble under the direction of Ms. Susan Quinn & Ms. Vincenza Etchegary, left St. John’s, NL for a Music Tour of Italy. The group travelled throughout Italy, and held performances in Perugia and Rome. The highlights of the trip included a mass at St. Peter’s Basilica featuring our Senior Chamber Choir as the guest choir and our Wind Ensemble performing for the Papal Audience in St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City. One of the students on the trip, Grade 11 student Alex Hiscock, wrote a reflection on his experience at the Papal Audience, which can be found below.
Most people fantasize about going to the Vatican; it’s one thing to say you were at a Papal audience but it’s quite different to say you were twenty feet away from Pope Francis himself and had a seat with a view over the entirety of St. Peter’s Square. Regardless of your particular faith, the lump in the throat that emerges as a result of the atmosphere in the crowd at a Papal Audience is undeniable. Although separated by many languages, people came together in harmony over one common goal. It appeared it was not just me that was affected after the ceremony for as we moved through Rome on our busses the dismay and cacophony had given way to peaceful sing-a-longs and laughter from every student. It has been such a honour to be on this trip, from Venice to Ferrara and Perugia to Assisi, I could not have asked for a better trip. So to the newly formed PAC squad, the shadow tour, the shadowing the shadow tour, the teacher chaperones and most importantly to Ms. Etchegary and Ms. Quinn I would like to say thank you for this amazing trip and this surreal experience.
—Alex Hiscock ’18