Internationally Renowned Composer Delivers Annual Slattery Lecture for Notre Dame

Document Type

Media Release

Publication Date

Winter 13-6-2006

Publisher Name

The University of Notre Dame, Fremantle

Publication Place



Fr Christopher Willcock sj delivered the annual Slattery Lecture for the School of Philosophy and Theology at The University of Notre Dame Australia.

The public lecture commemorates the contribution made to the University by Fr Peter Slattery OCarm and each year presents a person of international standing in the world of Theology. Fr Willcock, who enjoys a reputation as one of the world’s leading Catholic composers of liturgical and choral music has been in Western Australia for this semester as the St Thomas More Chair of Jesuit Studies.

The title of the lecture, “Everyday Blessings: the Heart’s Song, the Church’s Praise” dealt with the different understandings about the nature and purpose of blessings. To illustrate the point, Fr Willcock offered three pieces of original music; a blessing before meals, music for a penitential rite, and a psalm of blessing. The music added immensely to the evening’s presentation and showed Fr Willcock’s expertise in the area of liturgical music and his excellence as a composer.

It was enthusiastically received by those gathered and was recorded live. CDs will be produced and will be available through the School of Philosophy and Theology. The acting Dean, Associate Professor Peter Black, declared it one of the best ever Slattery lectures.

A chorale was formed especially for the event under the direction of Fr Willcock and included staff, students and others from parishes supportive of the University. Marseline Ciputra from Bateman Parish accompanied the chorale on the grand piano. Dr Clare Johnson, David Clark-Murphy and Angela McCarthy are staff at the university, while Katie Healy and Matthew Bouwman are students. Angela Bendotti (Manning Parish), Noel Chow and Patricia Spencer (Bateman Parish) completed the chorale. The evening was coordinated by Angela McCarthy.