CHOIR NON NOBIS
Since 1982 the choir carries out a liturgical service activity at the Parish of St. Charles of Novate Milanese, collaborates accompanying meditation in the strong moments of the year and singing in beneficial concerts in favor of AVSI (International Voluntary Support Association).
It is composed of young people and adults, and since 1995 has taken care of the education to sacred music and the dissemination of ancient singing for children’s voices, with the awareness of
that the vocation of those who sing is to awaken the human heart, in need of the Love and Beauty given to us by tradition.
He performs musical pieces of Gregorian chant and polyphony, has deepened the praises of Cortona, and since 2006 he has been passionate about Canto Ambrosiano, keeping in touch with a former chorister who is part of the Romite Ambrosiane of the Sacro Monte di Varese.
Among the members of the Choir were born two other vocations to the cloister and a vocation to the Priesthood.
Since 2012 it has been part of the network of Ambrosian choirs that work for the dissemination and rediscovery of this ancient song originated and spread in the diocese of Milan since the year 385 d. C by our patron Saint Ambrose; in its peculiarity it includes white voices that sing the Ambrosian, animating, in particular liturgical moments, functions in the Cathedral and S Ambrogio, Mirasole abbey and in other places in northern Italy.
The name “NON NOBIS” of our choir is taken from the words of Psalm 115, so that, as St. Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153) exhorted, it may be very clear… that none of us ever rely solely on our own strength and to remember, taking up the words spoken by Shakespearean Henry V before the decisive battle, that:
… in the face of the success of any initiative, it will be good to recite the “Non nobis Domine” chivalrous so that all our intentions remain firmly oriented to the greater glory of God.
Not nobis Domine, not nobis,
sed nomini tuo da gloriam,
super misericordiam tuam et veritatem tuam
nequando dicant gentes
ubi est Deus eorum?
Deus autem noster in caelo
sursum in caelo et in terra omnia
quaecumque voluit fecit
(taken from a drawing in the Antiphonale Missarum Mediolanensis, 1936)
WHY WE CHOSE THE BEE SYMBOL AROUND THE HONEYCOMB:
The episode of the bees from the “Vita Ambrosii” of his biographer Paolino Diacono (Milan, 370-429) ….
…Ambrose was born when his father Ambrose was head of the prefecture of Gaul.
One day, while the baby, placed the cradle in the praetorian courtyard, slept open-mouthed, suddenly a swarm of bees came and filled his whole face, to such an extent that the bees entered and left his mouth.
The father, who was walking nearby, together with his mother and daughter, prevented the slave, in charge of the child’s care, from chasing away the bees, fearful that they would hurt him, and even in his affection as a father, he wanted to wait and see how that miraculous event would end.
And after a while those, flying, rose to such a height as to escape the gaze of man.
Terrified by the event, the father said: “If this child lives, he will become something great.
In fact, since then the Lord worked in the childhood of his servant, so that what is written could be realized:
“Honeycombs are the good words (Prov. 16, 24)”.
That swarm of bees would have generated for us the honeycombs of his writings, which would have announced heavenly gifts
and they would raise the minds of men from earthly realities to heaven.
So we, Coro Non nobis, well aware of the need to always improve our humble service, have chosen to sing hymns and melodies of Ambrogio following the
tradition of the Ambrosian Singers, to continue the gift that the Lord has made to the Saint, in order to contribute to raising the mind and heart of those who listen to us towards the Almighty.