BY Ryan McDougall | December 23 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

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Superstar SuBo performs live at the Vatican

Scottish singing sensation Susan Boyle performed at the Vatican’s St Paul VI hall to help raise money for the Amazon rainforest and indigenous communities.

The superstar was invited to perform at the annual Christmas concert on Friday, December 13, alongside Lionel Richie and Bonnie Tyler.

It was not her first papal performance, as Susan, 58, previously performed at the open-air Mass in Glasgow’s Bellahouston Park to an audience of 70,000 in 2010 when Pope Benedict visited Scotland.

Susan, a devout Catholic, met Pope Francis ahead of her performance.

 

Humbling

She said: “To be at the Vatican meeting the Pope was such a humbling experience and to be asked to take part in his Christmas concert was a true honour.

“I have to pinch myself at how lucky I am and 10 years on I’m still having the most fantastic time with these incredible opportunities. I don’t and won’t ever take this for granted.”

Susan, of Blackburn, West Lothian, launched the SCIAF Wee Box campaign in 2011, 2012 and 2013.

At the Christmas concert, Pope Francis told the performers Christmas was a time for reflection.

He said: “The time before Christmas calls us to ask ourselves, ‘what is it that I am waiting for in my life? What is the great desire of my heart?’

“You too, with your songs, help awaken or reawaken this healthy human ‘yearning’ in the hearts of many people.”

 

‘Yearning’

The Charleston Gospel Choir and several Italian performers joined the line-up for the star-studded concert, which was sponsored by the Vatican Congregation for Catholic Education.

Pope Francis told the performers and concert organisers God was the author of the ‘yearning’ people feel in their hearts, adding ‘He comes to meet us by this route.’

The Holy Father stressed that God cannot be found along the path of “vain compulsion to acquire possessions or to keep up appearances.”

He said: “It is not there that God comes; no one will meet on that route. But surely he comes wherever there is hunger and thirst for peace, justice, freedom and love.

 

Spiritual growth

“Dear artists, I thank you for all that you do. I wish you the best for your activities and your spiritual growth.”

The Pope told the musicians to let their hearts be touched by the “mystery of Christmas, so that you can convey some of that same tenderness to those who listen to you.”

Donations and ticket proceeds will fund a Salesian project for indigenous communities in north-west Brazil and a Scholas Occurrentes campaign that will raise awareness in 450,000 schools worldwide about the benefits of reforestation. It is to be broadcast on Italian TV on Christmas Eve.

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