Indiana musician asked to compose pieces for Pope Francis

Photo of Robert Hobby, Director of Music at Trinity English Lutheran Church in Fort Wayne.

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) A talented and nationally recognized musician in the Fort Wayne community has been asked to compose two pieces of music for Pope Francis’ visit to the United States later in September. Robert A. Hobby, 52, Director of Music at Trinity English Lutheran Church will have his two compositions performed Sept. 24 and Sept. 25 in New York.

“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” Hobby said. ”It would be exciting to write for any papal visit, but it’s even more exciting to write for Pope Francis, who brings great compassion to Christianity and challenges us all to show greater compassion.”

Hobby began playing the organ in fourth grade at Grace Lutheran Church in Columbia City. Years later, he has done more than 250 compositions and now he’s composing for the pope:

  • Scoring an accompaniment for organ and orchestra for Tu Es Petrus, by French composer Charles Marie Widor, originally scored for choir and two organs; this piece will be a part of the prayer service at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York, on September 24.
  • Composing an arrangement for congregation, choir and orchestra for the hymn, “Alleluia, Sing to Jesus,” for the papal mass at Madison Square Gardens on September 25.

Hobby was contacted after the Director of Music at St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the president of a publishing company started looking for orchestral settings for the two pieces.

Hobby has served at Trinity English Lutheran since 1987, where he oversees several vocal and bell choirs, two steel drum ensembles and a recorder ensemble.

“It’s always to help people give glory to God and to help God speak to them through the music.” Hobby said, “The difference this time around is that the whole world is watching.”

“This is a great honor for Bob and a reflection on the quality of his talent and work,” said the Rev. Dr. Gary Erdos, Senior Pastor at Trinity English Lutheran Church. “Bob has dedicated his life to praising of God through music. I’m glad he has received this recognition for his work.”

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