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Testimonies

My music... and Saint Josemaria

John, premier violoncelle de l’Orchestre symphonique de Kitchener.

Canada, March 14, 2011

Tags: Family and work, Order, Responsibility, Supernatural outlook
John, learned from St Josemaria that making a place for God in his life meant he could find the right place for his family and friends too, without abandoning his music.

"My name is John and I play the cello. I have been playing the cello since I was 11 years old. I am the principal cellist of the Kitchener-Waterloo symphony orchestra. I first heard about Opus Dei from a friend of mine who was a musician. I wasn't a Catholic at that point. I was involved in other things. I was really impressed by this friend of mine in the orchestra. There was a point where I caught him playing the violin for God. So to speak. Music became a little bit less of a drug for me.

Books, paintings, music, these are beautiful things. But you can kind of turn them into an end in themselves. To live for them totally. Didn’t work out that way for me after I started to try and offer it up to God.

Well eventually I got married and had a family. I do these things for them too. Set the priorities right. So that's one thing that changed I think. Because I could have just gone crazy there. Totally immersed in it. You can't take it with you, you know? It's really a means.

Musicians are famous for being eccentric. Especially composers. You have Beethoven who struggled so much to compose his music. Just tearing his hair out. Just suffered so much, really struggled hard. Then you had Mozart who... it seemed to just flow effortlessly out of his body, music. And he just put it down. Beautiful. And then you look at their lives and they were a mess. Mozart gambled a lot or whatever. All kinds of things. How could this person… What is with the sublime music and everything? Well they were just talented.

They were great. They could do it. They had this fantastic gift and they certainly focused on that. And did that, you know. But I've always felt this is not the way it has to be. It doesn't have to conflict.

So if I have a regular plan of where I try to live my faith out during the day. This really does help me to put the music in its place. It's a wonderful thing. But it's not everything."