VALHALLA, N.Y. -- Several Stonehill College students, including Valhalla native Peter Giannini, sang for Pope Francis as part of the Stonehill Chapel Choir's seven-day pilgrimage to Italy.
The honor of singing for the Pope came as part of a weeklong pilgrimage to Italy for 32 Stonehill students, three alumni, three college staff, and 17 family members.
In addition to the performance for the Pope, the choir, which is known for its joyful liturgical music, provided music for Mass in St. Peter's Basilica and a concert at the San Lorenzo International Youth Center, according to a release from Stonehill College.
Along with the performances in Rome, the group visited Florence and Assisi to savor Italian culture, art and history, the release said.
The Stonehill Chapel Choir consists of both singers and instrumentalists of all faiths who provide musical leadership for the college's Sunday evening services in the Chapel of Mary on campus.
The choir also provides music ministry at the majority of major events on campus; and individual students provide music ministry to several parishes in the Fall River Diocese and the Archdiocese of Boston, sharing the skills and knowledge that they build at the college, according to the release.
"We are deeply honored to act as ambassadors for Stonehill through this year's pilgrimage," said Phil Pereira, Campus Minister for Music & Liturgy at Stonehill College. "This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that these students, parents, and staff will cherish forever."
Giannini is studying chemical engineering at Stonehill, and in addition to the choir, the other student activities in which he's involved include the BioChemistry Club, Moreau Honors Program and Peer Mentor. He graduated from Westlake High School in Thornwood last year.
Stonehill is a Catholic college located near Boston on a 384-acre campus in Easton, Mass.
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