Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Thursday 24 June |
The Solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist
home iconChurch
line break icon

These little children will be bringing Christ’s light to China this Christmas


I Am Heidi Loh | Youtube

Ary Waldir Ramos Diaz - published on 12/13/17

They are a "Little Choir" but with a big, beautiful mission.

While China doesn’t mark Christmas as a Christian feast day, this year a group of children are able to be ambassadors of Christ’s light to this country where the pope cannot (yet) go.

Pope Francis greeted the youngsters — a children’s choir called the Piccolo Coro “Mariele Ventre” dell’ Antoniano — on December 7.

“You sing of the authentic values of life and through song, you praise and give thanks to God for all the good that he gives us,” the pope told them. “Hopefully in this time of Advent in preparation for Holy Christmas, your songs that recount the event of Jesus’ birth can help those who hear them to understand the love and the wonder of what happened in Bethlehem 2,000 years ago.”

The pontiff assured the choir of his appreciation of their “beautiful musical interpretations” and said that “with your songs, you masterfully and simply transmit a sensation of serenity, which is so necessary for everyone, especially for those families that are passing through suffering and difficulties.”

In China, the official winter holiday is the Chinese New Year. So while globalization has ensured that the entire world is aware of Christmas, certainly not everyone celebrates it as Christ’s birthday.

Yet this year, the magic of Christmas will make it to China through this Little Choir.

This is their third consecutive tour and the young musicians will perform six concerts in Shanghai from December 30 through January 2.

Included on their program are “Adoramus te (Nearer My God To Thee)” and “Forza Gesú.”

This latter piece includes lyrics that can be translated:

“Each night when I pray in my little bed, I think of everything that can be seen from up above. All of the evil that we live here on earth. Every tear that reaches up there from down here … With love, so much can be done, including giving a little consolation to Jesus. Take heart, Jesus.”

The Chinese public discovered the Little Choir in 2010, when fans published a YouTube video of one of their performances from Verona, Italy.

With Chinese subtitles, the video went viral, and as a result of this, the Shanghai Children International Culture Development made the invitation to the group.

The choir is also an ambassador of UNICEF.

The day the pope heard them sing, his tweet was: “We all possess God-given talents. No one can claim to be so poor that they have nothing to offer others.”

See more of their videos here.


Read more:
Christmas carols might give you more than you bargain for

ChristmasMusicPope Francis
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Philip Kosloski
Padre Pio’s favorite prayer of petition
Zoe Romanowsky
Animated film shows the power of fatherhood in just one minute
Bret Thoman, OFS
What Padre Pio saw in the Spanish Flu of 1918
Eric Clapton, Luciano Pavarotti, East London Gospel Choir
J-P Mauro
Hear Clapton and Pavarotti sing a prayer to the “Holy Mothe...
Zelda Caldwell
Catholic priest’s chapel is finalist in “Shed of the Year&#...
Philip Kosloski
Can Catholics use the Enneagram personality system?
Fr. Patrick Briscoe, OP
4 Ways to understand God as Father
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.