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'Praise in Park' concert at Millennium Carillon promises great time for everyone on Aug. 24

July 24, 2008 - 1:04 PDT


'Praise in the Park' concert at Millennium Carillon
promises great time for everyone on Aug. 24

NAPERVILLE, IL (JULY 24, 2008) - Rain or shine, come and have a great time at "Praise in the Park," a free concert featuring three contemporary Christian artists, from 4 - 7 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 24, at the Millennium Carillon in Naperville. Singers John Angotti, Jorge Rivera and Aaron Thompson are the top stars, and they will be performing with band members.

Celebrate community by bringing your family and friends to this rockin' good time co-sponsored by eight local Catholic parishes whose choir members will join the headliners. The concert also will include special performances by Naperville carillonneurs Tim Sleep and Sue Bergen.

The 72-bell Millennium Carillon is housed in the Moser Tower just north of Aurora Avenue and at the base of Rotary Hill within Naperville's Riverwalk park complex.

"'Praise in the Park' will be a premiere Christian concert event at Naperville's beautiful Millennium Carillon," commented Robert Frazier, co-director of music and liturgy at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Parish, Naperville. "This will be a 'tour de force' program sure to entertain and inspire all ages."

"We also are so happy that these local Catholic parishes are cosponsoring this wonderful event for out community," Frazier added. In addition to St. Thomas Parish, other cosponsors include: Holy Spirit Catholic Community, St. Elizabeth Catholic Parish, St. Margaret Mary Catholic Parish, Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Parish, and the Faith Community of St. Raphael, all of Naperville; St. Joan of Arc Catholic Parish, Lisle; and St. Scholastica Catholic Parish, Woodridge. Also participating is Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Parish, Aurora.

Angotti is a gifted composer and singer already familiar to many as the visiting guest artist at St. Thomas the Apostle Parish where, for the past two years, he led the popular "St. Thomas Praise/Prays" events. He is a full-time music missionary who travels worldwide, providing inspirational music and witness to all ages through concerts, workshops, retreats, missions, conferences and worship. Angotti has won numerous awards including "Male Vocalist of the Year," "Pop/Contemporary" and "Praise and Worship Album of the Year" from the United Catholic Music and Video Association. (UCMVA recognition may be considered the Catholic equivalent of Grammy Awards.)

Angotti was invited to perform "Stand in the Light" during the pre-Mass celebration when Pope Benedict XVI visited Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. this spring. This song was chosen as the 2007 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress theme song and is the title of one of his latest recordings. Angotti and his band also participated in World Youth Day 2008 events, July 15-20, in Sydney, Australia, that attracted over 200,000 young people from around the world.

Rivera, like Angotti, carries his passion for music and ministry to the world. He has brought his message of hope to Mexico, Colombia, Puerto Rico and Ecuador as a speaker and performer and his most recent concert in Cali, Colombia, helped raise funds to build homes for homeless families.

One of Rivera's recordings, "Reinventando el Amor" (Reinventing Love), received a Unity Award from the AMCVA in 2006 for Spanish Album of the Year. The album includes riveting Latin rhythms with profound messages about the experience of a migrant Latino community. Its title is derived from the words of St. Vincent de Paul, "Love is infinitely inventive." Another recoding, "ENTRA," is a contemporary Latin/pop-styled CD featuring great anthems of discipleship, testimony and witness.

Rivera is coordinator for Hispanic Young Adult Ministry at the Archdiocese of Chicago. He has organized three archdiocesan Encuentros (gatherings) that have attracted multitudes of Latino young people. He also has worked on leadership formation retreats, music workshops and missions for parishes in need of beginning pastoral ministry formation with Hispanic young people.

Thompson, a professional Catholic composer, guitar player, trumpet player, pianist and choir director, effectively reaches out to adults, youth, clergy and laity, successfully highlighting the challenges and solutions of pastoral music ministry through the eyes of church teaching, music and family. He also calls upon his life experience as a working father and African American Catholic to bring humor and life to his message.

Thompson got his first taste of performing concerts at the Newman Center at Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, which he attended on a full trumpet scholarship. While in college, he also toured throughout the United States and Canada with the "Continental Singers." He performed at World Youth Day 2002 in Toronto, Ontario.

According to Thompson, "I really like to mix things up style-wise and tempo-wise," saying everyone from The Jackson Five and Stevie Wonder to Elton John and Aerosmith has influenced his music. "I want the audience - whether they're young or old - to find something that they can grab onto and take home."

People may bring picnics or snacks to enjoy with non-alcoholic beverages, and folding chairs or blankets for seating. Food and beverages also will be available on site at the Riverwalk Café. In case of rain, "Praise in the Park" will be held at All Saints Catholic Academy, 1155 Aurora Ave., Naperville, several blocks west of the Millennium Carillon.

Additional information, including parking locations and weather related updates, is available at

FROM: St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Parish * 1500 Brookdale Road * Naperville, IL 60563 * (630) 355-8980

FOR INFORMATION: Susan Francesconi (630) 355-8980, ext. 108 * or Robert Frazier (630) 355-8980, ext. 112


St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Parish
Gerald Czerak - Business Manager, 630 355-8980


'Praise in Park' concert


US Parishes

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