by Catherine Goldberg ’20 A&E Staff
One of the most well-known traditions at Providence College is the “Last Chance Mass,” celebrated every Sunday at 10 p.m. in St. Dominics Chapel. It is the final Mass of the weekend and the most well-attended.
There is an indescribable feeling of peace at the Last Chance Mass, which for students marks the end of one busy week and a pause before the next. The lights are dimmed low, candles are lit, and the St. Dominic Ensemble plays folk music.
St. Dominic Ensemble performs at every 10 p.m. Mass, specializing in contemporary Christian music. This year’s choir is led by Fiona Pearlman ’20 and consists of nine other singers and musicians: John Duffy ’20, Brooke Douglass ’21, Abby Kojoian ’21, Kevin Lydon ’21, Nolan Donato ’22, Catalina Mazo ’22, Grace Dizon ’23, Joe Genest ’22, and Steph Rizzo ’20.
Pearlman always knew that music was an important part of her life. She said her mother and Nana always told her that “singing is praying twice.” She never understood what that meant until she sang along with the music at Mass. Pearlman said, “music taught me what prayer is, who God is, how He loves me, and how He has been present in my life all along.” When she was a sophomore, she decided to audition for the Ensemble, even though she did not feel like she was religious enough to be a part of such a faithful group. Yet, she ended up making it. Now, Pearlman not only gets to express her love for music every Sunday, but she gets to praise and worship God, with whom she has become closer because of the choir. Her favorite part of singing at the Mass is “being able to spread God’s love to others through the beauty of music.”
The College community is extremely grateful to have singers and musicians like this group to keep the tradition of the Last Chance Mass alive. Some of this year’s group’s favorite songs to sing are “Lord I Need You,” “Heart of Worship,” and “Out of Hiding.” Sarah Kerrigan ’20 says she loves going to the Mass because she “really feels the Friar family come together.”
This tradition has been bringing students closer to God for generations. Alumni and parents will get the chance to experience the music of the 10 p.m. Mass during Homecoming Weekend on Sunday, October 6 at 9 a.m. with folk music by Bob Pfunder ’09 and Liz Cotrupi Pfunder ’08. The Mass will be celebrated by Rev. James Cuddy, O.P. ’98 with members of the Dominican community.