In heartfelt thanksgiving for the blessing of friendship, music and the opportunity to serve the Lord, Hangad Music Ministry celebrated its 29th anniversary with an afternoon of song, dance and prayer last Sunday, October 18.
Entitled “Home with Hangad”, the vocal ensemble’s latest online concert was streamed live via the Jesuit Communications (JesCom) and Radyo Katipunan 87.9 FM Facebook pages, and across 52 partner media organizations.
“We in Hangad, along with fellow music ministers from all over the globe, continue to do what we love doing. That is, helping others know God through music. Today more than ever, we need to be with each other and gather in faith, hope and love,” expressed veteran soprano Meechee Ricohermoso during the group’s opening remarks.
Continuing the inspiring series of prayers and songs posted on their social media pages and YouTube channel since the beginning of quarantine, Hangad once again delighted audiences with both new performances and memorable throwback songs.
Following the curtain-raising number of Paulo Tirol’s “Hangad”, Fr.Arnel Aquino SJ’s “Stand by me Still” was paired with the graceful ballet movements of UP Dance Company’s Louise Grace Meneses.
“Home with Hangad” then provided an emotional tribute to Eric Bolante, dedicating “In Your Darkest Hour” to the chorale’s beloved pianist who sadly passed away last week.
“We lift this up to God as we continue praying for Eric. Eric, continue watching over us. We love you very dearly and we know that you are there, with Him and the angels, weaving wonderful music. We will remember you in every note we sing and in every song we offer. We know that Hangad has gained another angel, one who will be with us always,” spoke choir member Kervin Torrente of their dear friend.
After featuring scenes from Hangad’s recently aired silver anniversary special, that included classic hymns such as “Pananatili”, the Ateneo de Naga University Choir honored Mother Mary and the Month of the Holy Rosary with their rendition of “Aba Ginoong Maria”. In light of the COVID pandemic, “Home with Hangad” also helped viewers remember God’s love, healing mercy and kindness through “Panalangin kay Kristo”, “So the Love of God” and Fr.Francis Alvarez SJ’s Tagalog narration of the Oratio Imperata.
As the concert finally drew to a close with The Company’s OJ Mariano collaborating on “You Will be Found” and the entire choir’s outpouring of gratitude in “Thank You”, Ryza Martinez shared a prayer with all of Hangad’s faithful fans and followers through the years.
“We urge everyone to continue falling in love with God and with all the things we do in His name. We continue to sing praises and read His word. St. Augustine tells us that His words are our letters from home. May we always be in constant communication with Him.”