An impromptu song from the Yuma Youth Choir rings out in the Pantheon in Rome. The temple to the gods of ancient Rome was filled with noise and tourists as the choir paused to sing.
|Postcard: Vatican - Mass ends|
The Yuma Youth Choir receives hearty applause at the end of Mass in St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican.
|Postcard: Vatican - Communion songs|
The Yuma Youth Choir sings two songs for communion during Mass at St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican. Singing at the Mass was the highlight of the choir's tour of Italy.
|Postcards: Vatican - Offering song|
The Yuma Youth Choir sings during Mass in St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican during the collection of the offering.
|Postcards: Vatican - Processional|
The Yuma Youth Choir sings their first song in the Vatican as Mass begins in St. Peter's Basilica. Singing in the Vatican was the highlight of the choir's 10-day tour of Italy.
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Voice of angels fills St Peter's Basilica
"It's like we're going to heaven and listening to the angels sing," said Chris Stoner after the Yuma Youth Choir sang in the Vatican during mass.
The choir's hard work paid off Thursday, as they sang five songs during a mass in St. Peter's Baslilica in the Vatican.
"It made me feel honored," says YYC member Kamyla Ruiz. "At first I was intimidated, but then I felt honored to be there. It was just a fantastic performance."
Ruiz wasn't the only one that felt that way. The choir's tour guide, Flavio Nicoletti, has taken several choirs to sing in this sacred space. According to Nicoletti, the Choirmaster of the Vatican, who oversees all of the singers in the Vatican, had had a bad experience with a prior choir and wanted to listen to the rehearsal before mass. He spoke with Nicoletti before the rehearsal.
"He asked me if this choir was good and I told him 'Yes, they're really, really good,'" says Nicoletti.
On hearing rehearsal, he agreed saying that the choir's voices are very simple as they are young, but "their intonation is perfect."
Choir director Dr. Beth Tibbs said, "It was amazing, just amazing." This was the first time Tibbs has been in the choir to perform as well.
The students were also very moved by the performance.
"It was different," says Justin Lujan. "It was life changing. No matter what walk of life or religion, it's still something very special."
"I thought it was amazing," said singer Beryl Lay. "There were people there that weren't even Catholic andwere celebrating mass from all over the world. Even though I didn't understand because it was in Latin (and Italian) I could still understand."
"I felt like we were becoming part of the extensive history of Vatican City and there's nothing more special than being involved in something that's changed the world," said 20-year-old Theresa Tibbs, daughter to director Beth Tibbs and life-long member of the choir.
This performance was made even more amazing due to the intense schedule the students have been through on this trip. With a tight schedule of sites to see, there's been little time for rest and relaxation.
In fact, the the morning and afternoon before singing in the Vatican, the students went on a walking tour of the Roman coloseum and forum in energy-draining heat and humidity, giving an impromptu performance inside the coloseum.
It was all worth it to these singers though.
20-year-old Teresa Tibbs, daughter to director Beth Tibbs and life-long member of the choir put it this way, "I felt like we were becoming part of the extensive history of Vatican City and there's nothing more special than being involved in something that's changed the world."