Marianist HILAC- Presenters & Artists for March 15 – 16, 2019 Conference

Marianist HILAC (Hawaiian Islands Liturgy and Arts Conferences) is a revised version of its predecessor which was known as BILAC.  The program emphasizes the mutual enrichment of the indigenous Hawaiian/host culture and the traditions of Catholic Christianity.  To that end, local and mainland artists and presenters come together to form community as they present concerts, lectures and workshops about the liturgical arts and the history and culture of the Hawaiian Islands.  The 2019 HILAC program will feature both familiar and new faces from here and from the mainland.  Here are just a few of those faces who have already committed for 2019:

Featured Guest Artist

Ricky Manalo Paulist Father Ricky Manalo studied composition and piano at the Manhattan School of Music, theology at the Washington Theological Union, liturgy and culture at the Graduate Theological Union and sociology at the University of California, Berkeley. He recently completed his doctorate in Liturgy and the Sociology of Religion. He has written numerous articles and books on pastoral ministry, music, liturgical inculturation, and intercultural communication.

Ricky’s music can be found in Catholic and Protestant hymnals alike. His best-known works include “Worthy Is the Lamb,” “In These Days of Lenten Journey” and “Beyond the Days” as well as his recently released Mass of Spirit and Grace. His compositions have been used in papal Masses celebrated by Pope Saint John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and Francis. He has published two books: Chanting on Our Behalf, Revised Edition (OCP) and The Liturgy of Life (Liturgical Press). He recently collaborated with fellow composers on Our Common Home, a collection inspired by Pope Francis’ Laudato Si’ encyclical, offering timely music touching on themes of care for creation, poverty and solidarity.

Ricky is recognized as a leading authority on intercultural liturgical issues and music. A frequent lecturer, presenter and workshop leader in cross-cultural settings, he specializes in offering highly practical applications and strategies.

Ricky Manalo is currently teaching at Santa Clara University and the Jesuit School of Theology (Berkeley, CA). When not traveling, he resides at Old St. Mary’s Cathedral in Chinatown, San Francisco.

Special Update on Fr. Ricky

Fr. Ricky reflects on his special award:

Manalo award

This past July, I was honored to receive NPM’s 2018 Pastoral Musician of the Year Award during the national gathering in Baltimore. It was a wonderful occasion, but I was completely surprised when I first learned of the news; particularly because I could name a dozen other musicians who, in my mind, were far more deserving of this amazing accolade. However, as the great comedian Jack Benny once said, “I don’t deserve this award, but I have arthritis and I don’t deserve that either.”

In a way, Jack Benny captures some of my bewilderment as I prepared to accept this great distinction. In the end, my reaction prompted me to reflect on my journey as a musician and composer over the last two decades. As I noted the ups and downs, amount of work and “dark night of the soul” moments, I realized they were more than offset by an abundant supply of God’s grace that has formed me into the liturgical composer I am today. I am so grateful for this tremendous gift.

In the introductory notes for my collection, In the Sight of the Angels, I wrote that creating, publishing and producing Catholic worship music is a collaborative and humbling process that begins the moment the Holy Spirit stirs a composer with a tune, text or theological understanding. It continues throughout the editing, recording and marketing decisions of a publishing company, but is not complete until a song comes to life in the full, conscious and active participation of a worshiping assembly. In short, by the time a liturgical song is sung, its creation and claim to any fame cannot be credited to a single person, but is instead the fruit of many people, seen and unseen.

The same holds true for this award. It represents the work and support of so many, particularly my family at OCP. Each of my songs contains musical and textual suggestions that were never in my original manuscripts, but became a part of them through the gifts of those who contributed to the editorial, notation and production processes along the way.

As is often the case, just when composers think they have touched the divine through their original composition, they are quickly humbled by God inviting them to remain open to the Holy Spirit during the course of publication. And if they choose to cooperate with the Spirit, they eventually realize that their music is never really “their own,” but God’s sole possession, freely given to them, without precondition.

So, thank you for your share in this recognition as Pastoral Musician of the Year. Liturgical music exists only to celebrate who we are together and who we are in God. May God be praised, as we continue to lift our voices and our hearts to the glory of God forever. Thank you.

–Ricky Manalo, CSP

Additional Artists and Presenters

joe-camacho Joe Camacho is a native Hawaiian, and has dedicated much of his life to helping promote and advocate for, his cultural homeland as a hula dancer, singer, composer and storyteller. Joe is the program coordinator for the well known Hawaiian Islands and Liturgy and Arts Conference held on the Hawaiian Islands each November, and has served as MMA’s dance coordinator since the beginning. Joe has liturgical compositions published with GIA, and as a singer, he can be heard on the recordings of David Haas, Marty Haugen, Lori True, and many others. Joe brings a unique blend of love and care for the people of God with his tremendous spirituality and experience to MMA – and we are the  better for it.



Fr. Alapaki Kim – “Fr. Paki” is a priest from the Diocese of Honolulu, and a nationally recognized expert in Hawaiian history and culture.  He is pastor of St. Rita’s Church in Nanakuli, and has been working on a national level to develop an official Hawaiian translation of the Order of the Mass.  He serves as the Chaplain for Marianist HILAC.


MeBro. Dennis Schmitz, S.M. – Dennis is a Marianist Brother who has experience as a high school campus minister, foreign missionary and now a spiritual event planner.  He serves on the HILAC Coordinating Team as the Head of Temporalities.




Lori True – Once again serves on the HILAC Co-ordinating Team as the person responsible for our prayer services and liturgies. Active as a workshop presenter, concert performer, master cantor, and recording artist, she is a published composer of liturgical music with GIA Publications, and has authored articles on the topics of liturgy, music, cantoring, and liturgical preparation and planning. A mother of two, Lori formerly served as a parish music and liturgy director at various parishes and communities in New Hampshire and Minnesota, and has also served as an author and consultant to many parishes and faith communities, as well as being a faculty member for the annual Knockadoon Folk Liturgy Course in Knockadoon, Ireland.