On Monday, the choir left Budapest for Bratislava, the capital city of Solvakia. On the way we stopped at Pannonhalma Abbey, a Benedictine Archabbey in the hills of northwest Hungary near the border of Austria and Slovkia. The abbey has strong ties to Saint Anselm College, as it is the original abbey of the monks that founded Woodside Priory and most recently it is where Abbot Matthew spent a year after his retirement. The abbey runs an all-boys school and we were able to tour the school and abbey, guided by some of the students. The students and monks spoke very highly of Abbot Matthew and his visit and it was a great connection for our students.
Following our tour, the choir performed an informal concert in the main church which was attended by approximately 200 students, faculty, staff, and monks. After our visit to Pannonhalma, we continued on to Bratislava where, after a quick orientation walk, the students had the evening free to explore the city on their own.
On Tuesday, the choir left Bratislava after a quick one night stay and headed for Prague, the capital city of the Czech Republic. Along the way we stopped at Brno, a small town on the Czech and Slovakian border. The students had a few hours to walk around and see the old city center and enjoy lunch on their own. Upon our arrival in Prague we had a quick orientation walk and then everyone had the evening free to immerse themselves in the city.
On Wednesday, we will visit the Prague castle, the churches of Prague, and then have a private Ash Wednesday Service with Fr. Bede followed by a formal full-length concert at Emauzy Monastery.
-Bobby Aldrich '01