Sister Bernardone Rock, FSE
Birds singing with abandon, wind chimes ringing a soft welcome, the rustling of breezes moving through the trees – sounds creating music outdoors to which many people are oblivious, but these are spirit-lifting tunes for Sister Bernardone Rock, FSE, a nature-lover and a professional musician.
Sister Bernardone is a leading choral conductor and composer for the Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist. She has written Masses for special feasts and numerous liturgical hymns which have become Community treasures.
As the foundress of the John S. Duss Memorial Music Conservatory in Duluth, Minnesota, Sister Bernardone shared her love of music with hundreds of students as she taught piano, guitar and other instruments, and formed women’s and children’s chorales to perform around the city. Since the closing of the Conservatory, Sister Bernardone has been on staff at St. Meinrad Seminary in St. Meinrad, Indiana where she teaches college music courses, and individual lessons in voice and piano. She directs the seminary schola of 25 men who sing at the liturgical services.
While at the motherhouse in Connecticut during semester and summer breaks, Sister Bernardone teaches choral singing to the formation Sisters. She and her fellow musician-Sisters are preparing a second edition of the FSE Heritage Hymnal scheduled for production in the spring.
Following in the spirit of St. Francis of Assisi who was known as a troubadour and a singer of the praises of God throughout his life, Sister Bernardone cherishes the beauty of the earth and all its creatures which, each in its own way, sings the praises of its Creator through simplicity or grandeur of life. Her religious name, Bernardone, is St. Francis’ last name.