A Beautiful Day in Brno – Celebrating Faith with Music

March 19, 2024  •  Author: marketing

The Capital of Music

Famous for its gastronomy, history, and rich architecture, the beautiful city of Brno is one of the most famous cities in the Czech Republic. It is the second-largest city in the country besides the capital Prague. Brno has countless historical monuments, including Tugendhat Villa, designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2001. Additionally, the city hosts a fireworks festival called Ignis Brunensis (Latin for Flame of Brno), which usually attracts roughly 100,000 to 200,000 visitors to each display.

Why are we mentioning this city? Because for one day, Brno was the capital of music. At least for our students.

Music and Cumorah Academy

Cumorah Academy students had a special trip to Brno to explore its beauty and serve others through music. Yes, that’s right: music. Semesters may come and go, but essentially every semester, we have a significant number of students who possess talent in music, whether performing an instrument or singing. Half of the students were part of the choir, conducted by our intern, Rebecca Livingston.

Their efforts were worthwhile. Despite their busy schedule on campus, they set aside time to devote to the choir and uplift others with angelic music. Keep reading as we immerse ourselves in this beautiful trip, full of remarkable experiences.


Students woke up early, ready to kick off the day. They found all the tables in the Common Room filled with sandwiches, fruits, water, cookies, and other snacks. Students chatted and ate. Once the bus was ready, they boarded it and prepared to travel.

Students gathered in Brno.

The trip from campus to Brno took a couple of hours. Upon arrival, they promptly gathered for a group picture since the schedule wouldn’t allow for one at the end of the day. After the photo session, they proceeded to a cathedral in Brno to perform for the audience.

Praising with Music

This was not the first time our students sang in a public place. In the Fall Semester of 2022, a group of Ukrainian students performed a folk Ukrainian song a cappella during their trip to Brno.

Choir of students singing at the Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul.

The idea to perform came from Don Homer (Campus President). Don and Iain (Academic Director) asked permission from cathedral custodians so the choir could sing to viewers and tourists, and the custodians kindly accepted. The choir performed at the Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul, commonly known as “Petrov” for locals. This Roman Catholic monument is one of the most important in the Czech Republic.

This cathedral is full of tourists, and they were the audience of the choir of Cumorah Academy. Many tourists took pictures of the presentation.

They felt honored for the opportunity to praise God with music and to entertain those interested in listening to them. There are parts of our hearts that only music can touch. The Greek philosopher Plato once said:

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything.”

Before their next presentation, our students had time to explore the city. They split into groups, and each group decided on their goals: exploring restaurants, historical buildings, and other breathtaking places that only Brno can offer.

Yes, they took a lot of pictures. And yes, they had a wonderful time exploring the richness of the Czech Republic.

However, their tour wasn’t finished as they had one more presentation. And that one would be special.

Music and Faith

Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints worship together in buildings called “chapels”. The choir of students had the chance to perform at the chapel where our Academic Director, Iain R. Saunders, attends. Not only was he part of the meeting, but Iain himself conducted our students! Yes, our Academic Director is also a musician and a singer.

Our Academic Director, Iain Saunders, conducts the choir.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints encourages its members to engage in cultural and meaningful activities so that they can spread good values in the community. Currently, there is one stake in the Czech Republic, established in 2016. The Stake comprises 7 wards and 5 branches. President Jan Pohořelický is serving as the current Stake President.

On this day, members and friends from the Czech Republic and other countries could celebrate and worship together with music, faith, and love. Gilmar, a student from Brazil, was one of the pianists. They performed hymns that referenced the Savior Jesus Christ, the focus of the meeting, and everything we do at Cumorah Academy.

Amazing Experience

Rebecca Livingston, one of our interns, loved the experience. She was one of the conductors, helping the choir prepare for these presentations through rehearsals and practice.

 She said: “I loved it! I love having a space to sing together on campus. It brought a lot of people together, and it was a lot of fun.” She was also one of the pianists, alongside Gilmar and Sara, a student from Peru.

Marcos, one of our students from Brazil, performs the song His Hands to members of the Church, and friends.

Students, including Marcos from Brazil, were among the choristers. He has been passionate about music since childhood, and having the chance to sing with people from different countries excited him.

Under Iain’s direction, our students sang with passion, as some might say, like angels. Among those present were missionaries, church leaders, our dear mentors of the week Bryan and Lorraine Searing, members of the Church, and friends.

Emma, a member of the Church, graciously sings a Czech folk song.

Marcus sang “His Hands,” and Emma (a young girl from the ward) performed a Czech song. Don Homer (our campus director) followed suit, singing “Oh Lord, My Redeemer,” and Iain Saunders took the stage to perform the monumental piece “Bring Him Home” from the award-winning musical Les Misérables. Each performer felt something stir in their hearts during the presentations.

Time to Return

After the presentation, they had a chance to interact with the members and friends in the chapel. They ate together and cleaned the chapel together. Unfortunately, the time to return had come, and they wished they could stay longer. They will forever remember this trip filled with music, love, and memories.

Celebrating Easter with Music

These presentations were part of our commitment to love and serve the Lord Jesus Christ. This Easter time is perfect to remember His life and teachings. We loved spreading His love to others through music.

Reflecting on this remarkable experience, we may turn to the scriptures and find that music is quite present in its pages. The Psalmist in the Old Testament wrote about praising God with music. The Savior sang hymns with His Apostles in the New Testament. But perhaps one of the most powerful verses about music is found in the words of the prophet Moroni in the Book of Mormon. He spoke about those faithful members who would inhabit eternal life with their God:

During the presentations, they felt as though they were singing and communing with God and the Son in a state of endless happiness.

Watch their Easter presentation below:

Written by Fernando L. Ferreira Jr.

Supervision: Kamila Uberto Fullmer