Few sounds are as evocative of contemplation and prayer in the Christian imagination as the sound of plainchant, the music that was born in the ancient church. Its purpose was to glorify God, lifting up the hearts of those who sing and of those who hear it. Just as the Western church has inherited a vast legacy of Gregorian chant, which is the basis of written Western music as we know it, rich traditions of cantillation as a spiritual practice also exist in many other faith traditions.
Christina Labriola is a graduate of the Masters of Sacred Music program at Emmanuel College in Toronto, Ontario, and is currently completing doctoral work at Regis College, Toronto School of Theology, in the area of spirituality and music. She works in Toronto as a church music director at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Parish at the University of Toronto’s Newman Centre, and St. Peter’s Catholic Church.