St. Patrick’s Seminary, Menlo Park, California

Catholic Institute

of Sacred Music

Summer Classes

Graduate-level study structured for busy schedules

Online, in-person, intensive, or term-length course formats

FREE tuition in Summer 2023

Affordable room & board

Our Classes

History & Principles of 
Sacred Music


Latin for Church Musicians: Terminology, Grammar, & Poetry of the Psalms 

Tuesday & Thursday Evenings

June 1 to July 27

Parish Sacred Music Program Management


Introduction to Gregorian 


Advanced Seminar in Gregorian Chant: Approaches to Gregorian Rhythm

Mornings, July 3 to 7

Online enrollment full; seats remain only for in-person instruction

Advanced Seminar in Gregorian Chant: Conducting (Chironomy)

Afternoons, July 3 to 7

Online enrollment full; seats remain only for in-person instruction

Teaching Gregorian Chant to Children

July 10 to 14

Online enrollment full; seats remain only for in-person instruction

Choral Institute


Composition Seminar: Short Works for Parish Choirs


Organ Improvisation Seminar


The History of the Roman Rite

July 24 to 28

Advanced Seminar in Gregorian Chant: Chants of the Divine Office

Afternoons, July 24 to 28

Public Lecture & Concert Series

The Beauty of the Sung Mass

Sunday, February 26, 2023, 4:00 p.m., PST
Lecture, Dr. William P. Mahrt, Stanford University
Sancta Maria Hall at St. Patrick’s Seminary

The Mass: Essence &  Foundation of Western Civilization

Sunday, March 19, 2023, 5:00 p.m., PDT

Lecture, His Excellency, Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone, Archbishop of San Francisco
Sancta Maria Hall at St. Patrick’s Seminary

The Marriage of Heaven and Earth: Medieval Reflections Music of St. Hildegard of Bingen, Pérotin, & St. Martial Ms.

Sunday, April 30, 2023, 4:00 p.m., PDT

Concert, Karen Clark, contralto
Jonathan Dimmock, organ/organetto, baritone
Main Chapel at St. Patrick’s Seminary


Discover the Ward Method

Join Dr. Jennifer Donelson-Nowicka as she presents a free online information session about the method.

Participants will discover answers to the following questions:

  • What is the goal of the Ward Method?
  • What are the basic principles of the Ward Method?
  • What are the elements in a lesson?
  • How can I use the pedagogical methodology in rehearsals with older students and adults to learn chant?

The information session will include a discussion of the method, demonstration videos, and an opportunity for questions and answers.

Modal Mondays

10 Lessons in Solfège for Reading, Hearing, & Singing Gregorian Chant

Mondays 5:30-6:15 PST, Jan. 23 to March 27

  • Useful Exercises to Improve Your Solfège
  • Using Solfège to Hear and Read Chant Notation, within the Mode
  • Gregorian Chant Analysis with Respect to the Mode
  • & Tips for Teaching Parish Choirs Using Solfège & the Modes

All skill levels welcome.

Our Mission

Founded in 2022, the mission of the Catholic Institute of Sacred Music is to draw souls to Jesus Christ through the beauty of sacred music and the liturgy. 

The Institute offers a substantial program of accredited, graduate-level coursework designed to help church musicians and clergy better to know and love the Church’s treasury of sacred music and her teachings on sacred music. Our goal is to equip students with the theological, philosophical, and historical knowledge, as well as the practical skills (singing, playing, conducting, composing, organizing, fundraising) necessary to build excellent sacred music programs in parishes and schools. We aim to help others revitalize the faith of Catholics and instill vitality in parish and school life through a vibrant sacred music program.

We are committed to a faithful and generous service of the Church. We cultivate fidelity, resiliency, a healthy sense of creativity, and selflessness within our student body and faculty as characteristics of our service as we labor together in the vineyard of the Lord to bring in a rich harvest. 

St. Patrick’s Seminary, in Menlo Park, California

For the past 125 years, St. Patrick’s Seminary has successfully prepared men to become Roman Catholic priests in conformity to Christ. Its expansive park-like grounds, historic chapel, modern classrooms, and extensive library provide an ideal environment for prayer, meditation, and study, within close proximity to major urban centers that provide rich field education opportunities. The integrated process of human, spiritual, intellectual, and pastoral formation at St. Patrick’s Seminary revolves around our core values of spiritual fatherhood, fidelity, holiness, wisdom, evangelization, resiliency, and compassion. 


Thanks for joining us in our inaugural season!

As we conclude our first full semester of activities, we want to say "thank you" for being a part of the Catholic Institute of Sacred Music! Because of your support and participation, we have already been able to accomplish great things for Christ and His Holy Church....

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