Sacred Music

by Paul Jernberg

Musicians will enter on this new work (the composition of sacred music) with the desire to continue that tradition which has furnished the Chruch, in her divine worship, with a truly abundant heritage.  Let them examine the woks of the past, their types and characteristics, ... so that "new forms may in some way grow organically from forms that already exist," and the new work will form a new part in the musical heritage of the Church, not unworthy of its past,

-Musicam Sacram, Art. 59

About the Composer

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PAUL JERNBERG, JR.

Paul Jernberg is the Founder and Director of the Magnificat Institute of Sacred Music.

Born in Chicago in 1953, Paul's early professional formation included music and piano performance studies at the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago and Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin. He is a graduate of DePaul University in Chicago.

His early career in secular music included work as accompanist, performer, and director in the fields of ballet, opera, and musical theater. Alongside this work in music, Paul was also a professional swimming coach, holding positions in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Arizona State University in Tempe, and Gothenburg, Sweden.

In Sweden, 1983-1993, Paul's musical career expanded to include choral directing and extensive composition. Through living next to a Franciscan monastery and participating daily in their liturgical life, he was introduced to the treasures of grace-filled Gregorian chant and Eastern Orthodox sacred music.

Since returning to the U.S. in 1993, Paul has been a parish music director, composer, and teacher: in Chicago’s inner city, in Peoria, Illinois, and in Massachusetts. During his ten years at Trivium School in Lancaster, Massachusetts, he taught not only music but also English Literature and Composition, Theology, Latin, French, and Algebra.

In 2005 Paul became the founding director of Magnificat Academy, a choir school with a full academic curriculum for grades 4-12 in Warren, Massachusetts. After flourishing in Warren for three years, and then becoming the Choir School of St. Paul's Cathedral in Worcester, Magnificat was obliged to discontinue classes in 2011 in the midst of national and local economic crises. Subsequently it continued its educational mission through the support of various projects, until its transformation in 2018 to a full-fledged Institute of Sacred Music.

In the summer of 2014, the renowned Schola Cantorum of St. Peter the Apostle recorded Paul’s Mass of Saint Philip Neri, which is the first published musical setting of the entire Ordinary of the Mass in English, for congregation and choir. Having received wide acclaim, his music is now being sung in parishes throughout the United States, as well as in Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Sweden.

©Paul Jernberg and Magnificat Academy.