ATLANTA — The Missouri-based contemplative nuns Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles were named Billboard magazine’s Classical Traditional Artist 2012 and 2013. It’s the first order of nuns to ever win an award in the history of Billboard magazine.
The sisters were recognized for their two bestselling albums, Angels and Saints at Ephesus, which spent 13 consecutive weeks at no. 1 on Billboard’s Classical Traditional Music chart, and Advent at Ephesus, which spent six consecutive weeks at no. 1 on the same chart.
The Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles bested a group of popular classical music artists to secure the award, including Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman.
“How does a community of Benedictine Sisters who follow the rule of St. Benedict in the most monastic sense, never leaving their priory in the rolling hills of the Midwest, accomplish this achievement of Billboard’s Classical Traditional Artist 2012 and 2013 for two years and counting?,” said Monica Fitzgibbons, cofounder of De Montfort Music.
“Many music industry vets would like to know. It is truly their heavenly purity and fiat that will provide the clues. We are so grateful that this music is being embraced by many hearts on a wide-scaled basis. Congratulations, Benedictines of Mary, and congratulations, world!”
Founded in 1995, the Benedictines of Mary offer their lives in prayer and sacrifice for priests. The work of their hands is devoted primarily to the making of priestly vestments. They also take care of gardens, an orchard, and a small farm.
The community follows the monastic horarium as laid out in the rule of St. Benedict. They partake of the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and also chant the Divine Office in Latin according to the 1962 Breviarium Monasticum.