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Ministry of Dance

Sacred Dance at St. CamillusThe St. Camillus Sacred Dance Ministry invites you to join us to learn and experience the ministry of liturgical dance.  We participate in major parish liturgical celebrations, conduct a summer workshop and participate in ecumenical celebrations in the Washington Metropolitan Area.

To join us:
Age: 6 years and older
Skills: The desire to learn
For more information contact:  Tiffany Green: (301) 852-0865

Why We Dance

The Sacred Dance Ministry at St. Camillus dances as a form of prayer.  We meditate on the messages in the music of the liturgy and seek to express them with our bodies, which are temples of the Holy Spirit. Our intention is to bring those attending the Mass and viewing our expression into a deeper place of prayer and reflection.

Liturgical dance is based in scripture. 2 Samuel 6:14 says "David danced with all his might before the Lord." In 1 Chronicles 15 and 16 David also danced when the Ark of the Covenant came to his city. Psalms 149 and 150 say that we are to praise His name with dance. In addition, other references in the Bible to lively worship included dance. Hebrew words that have meanings related to physical movement were translated into English as "rejoice."

The Catholic Church understands that art and creative expression has a holy value and embraces the role of art in making the spiritual tangible. The "Letter of His Holiness Pope John Paul II to Artists" in 1999 made clear that the Church needs art. In section 10, he says, "art remains a kind of bridge to religious experience." The Holy Father suggests in section 12,  "Art must make perceptible, and as far as possible attractive, the world of the spirit, of the invisible, of God." In section 14, he addresses Christian artists directly: "I wish to remind each of you that, beyond functional considerations, the close alliance that has always existed between the Gospel and art means that you are invited to use your creative intuition to enter into the heart of the mystery of the Incarnate God and at the same time into the mystery of man."

At St. Camillus, we also dance to represent the diversity of our multicultural community. We are an inclusive ministry and we welcome anyone above age 6 to join us. As our parish joins together people from almost every country on the earth, we dancers join as sisters and brothers to share our traditions of music and dance to learn from each other and to present to the congregation new ways of praising God. By joining hands in dance together, we further create God's church on earth in a way that will echo the church we will be together in heaven.