St. Cecelia

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About Saint Cecelia

In addition to being the patron of Church music, Saint Cecelia is one of the most famous Roman martyrs of the early church. According to legend, Cecelia was a Christian of high rank betrothed to a Roman named Valarian. Through her influence, Valerian was converted and martyred along with his brother. Cecelia's martyrdom followed.

Since the time of the Renaissance, Saint Cecelia has usually been portrayed with a viola or a small organ. As one writer put it, "Like any good Christian, Cecelia sang in her heart and sometimes with her voice."

She has become a symbol of the Church's conviction that good music is an integral part of the liturgy, of greater value to the church than any other art.