The Caritas Experience

Caritas is a four day music ministry and service experience for incoming Villanova students and a seven day Orientation-focused preparation program for returning Pastoral Musicians.  Led by Donald Giannella, Associate Director of Campus Ministry for Pastoral Music and Villanova JR and SR leaders, Caritas seeks to develop the spirit and skills of the Villanova Pastoral Musician, prepare repertoire for the upcoming school year, enhance camaraderie among current and new pastoral musicians, and prepare and present music for the Orientation Liturgies and Closing Ceremony.  An off campus skills/ensemble building day will highlight the program.

Highlights for Participants

Villanova students who have prior choral and/or orchestral experience, especially connected to worship are strongly encouraged to consider this program. Students will move into their rooms on the weekend before the rest of the student body and will participate in skills workshops, repertoire training, team building activities, leader formation and spiritual reflection.  They will lead the music for the various Liturgies and Closing Ceremony of New Student Orientation.

How do I get involved?

Caritas can only accept 20 new students and up to 30 returning students each year.  Admission is rolling and applicants will be informed of their acceptance within two weeks of application.

  1. Caritas is a FREE leadership training program for new and returning Pastoral Musicians.
  2. A place-holding deposit of $50 will be accepted for each participant, fully refunded at the end of the Caritas program.
  3. A full schedule and further information will be sent to accepted participants.

About the Pastoral Music Ministry
Each year the Pastoral Musicians serve with between 80 and 100 student musicians and is a nationally recognized Roman Catholic Campus Ministry.  More info available on the Villanova University Center for Worship page or ‘like’ VILLANOVA PASTORAL MUSICIANS on Facebook.


CARITAS Application


Tentative Schedule

(Check back soon for further details)

  • Saturday, August 16:  Returning Student Arrival and Move-in; Evening Social Activity
  • Sunday, August 17: New Student Arrival and Move-in; First Rehearsal, 8pm Mass, Social
  • Monday, August 18:  Choral and Instrumental Skills workshops, rehearsals, Philly Cheesy Late-Night
  • Tuesday August 19:  Off Campus Trip, Training, Ensemble/Leadership training
  • Wednesday, August 20:  Music as Service, an opportunity for reflection and renewal, final rehearsals and New-Student Commissioning Ceremony (New Students join Orientation)
  • Thursday, August 21:  Orientation and Performance Preparations, Orientation Mass,
  • Friday, August 22:  Event for Soph, Junior, Senior participants TBA
  • Saturday August 23:  rest day
  • Sunday, August 24:  Annual St. Thomas of Villanova Parish Mass Celebration, Welcome Back Brunch, New Student Mass, and Returning Students Mass
  • Tuesday, August 26:  First rehearsal of the Fall Semester in the Church.

I wept at the beauty of your hymns, and I was powerfully moved at the sweet sound of your Church's singing. Those sounds flowed into my ears, and the truth streamed into my heart.

St. Augustine:  Confessions 9,6