An Evening with Father Andrew: Pastor to share musical talents to benefit parish and school

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WARWICK — Tonight, Friday, May 15, all are welcome to take part in a special musical event to support a local parish and Catholic school.

This evening at 7 p.m., Father Andrew Messina will showcase his musical talents on Facebook Live — all to benefit SS. Rose and Clement Parish and SS. Rose of Lima School. Father Messina serves as pastor of SS. Rose and Clement and is also the temporary administrator of St. Anthony Church in West Warwick.

Patti Gioffreda, parishioner and parish secretary, shared that Father Messina, who was assigned to the parish a little less than a year ago, goes above and beyond to reach his congregation through Facebook Live Masses, YouTube videos, along with reflections on Spotify and postal mailings. Tonight, he adds to his outreach by showcasing his musical gifts to benefit a church and parish school that spiritually supports so many. 

“The comfort and care he brings to his parishioners is very heartwarming in this time of sadness,” said Gioffreda. “All of the means he has taken to connect with parishioners is wonderful.”

Father Messina has been playing a variety of musical instruments since he was 9 years old, starting with the guitar, before learning to play the piano, bass and several others in between.  

“Growing up, I couldn't decide whether to become an engineer or a musician,” explained Father Messina. “Priesthood wasn't even on the radar scope until many years later. I've always enjoyed music, although being a priest running two parishes and a school, there isn't much time to play, so I do a lot more listening these days.”

When starting to consider a fundraiser for the parish and school, Father Messina knew he wanted to offer his talents to sing and play.  

“It really was that simple. It's something I've wanted to do for quite some time, and now — with the pandemic — here's an opportunity.”

Tonight's event will feature a collection of music that Father Messina hopes will give viewers a sense of peace and knowledge that the Lord is with them and guiding them through the pandemic and throughout their lives. 

“There will be familiar church pieces and popular non-church music as well as a few surprises. The idea is to step back from all that we're going through for a short while and to relax.”

TO WATCH visit www.facebook.com/ssrcparish at 7 p.m. tonight, May 15.

TO DONATE online, please click here to donate securely or send a check to Saints Rose and Clement Parish, 111 Long Street, Warwick RI 02886.