Series of tribute CDs pays homage to Medical Mission Sisters' music
Published: April 10, 2012
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Plenty of well-known recording artists have been the subject of tribute albums recorded by all-star casts of performers doing cover versions of their songs. The tribute subjects have ranged from Bruce Springsteen to the Eagles to Sonny Bono to Woody Guthrie. Now, a new tribute subject has been unveiled: the Medical Mission Sisters. Those who came of age after the Second Vatican Council are probably familiar with the sisters' first album, "Joy Is Like the Rain," released in 1966. It was certified gold for sales of 500,000 copies -- unheard-of at the time for Catholic religious music, and possibly the only gold record for the genre until the Benedictine Monks of Santo Domingo do Silos' 1994 CD "Chant" went triple platinum for sales of 3 million. The sisters were prolific, recording 15 albums in the studio -- more than Madonna, the Eagles, and scores of other pop, rock and soul stars -- before their songwriter, Sister Miriam Therese Winter, switched her writing to theological topics. Dan Paulos, director of the Shrine of St. Bernadette in Albuquerque, N.M., and head of the St. Bernadette Institute of Sacred Art, has an ambitious tribute plan. Of the estimated 250-300 songs the Medical Mission Sisters recorded, he plans on rerecording 100 of them, including 12 songs Sister Miriam Therese wrote but never recorded. The first CD, "Loving You," contains 21 songs, including three of the new tunes. Paulos told Catholic News Service that Sister Miriam Therese even returned to the recording studio. "The first recording was 46 years ago, and four of the originals (sisters) went back and recorded more songs," he said.
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