Frank La Rocca: Requiem for the Forgotten; Messe des Malades


Cappella Records proudly announces the release of Frank La Rocca’s Requiem for the Forgotten – Messe des Malades, performed by Benedict XVI Choir and Orchestra, directed by renowned international conductor Richard Sparks.

Requiem for the Forgotten commemorates the displaced and the homeless, constructing a musical sanctuary for the soul while championing the inherent dignity of every person, particularly those who have been forsaken. Drawing upon his Ukrainian heritage, La Rocca’s setting of a poem on Ukrainian priest Andrei Ischak (martyred by the Bolsheviks) deeply resonates with those enduring oppression today. The composer’s late sister Carin, who valiantly confronted the challenges of multiple sclerosis, gave inspiration to the Messe des Malades (Mass for the Sick). It underscores the universal need for healing, capturing the composer’s personal journey as well in every note. Infused with an ethical power towards empathy, this music moves us to use our own gifts in a more excellent way for a broken world.

Benedict XVI Choir’s début recording of these works is sung by some of America’s finest singers, many GRAMMY®-nominated. Sung in Latin and English. Booklet includes all translations.

Messe des Malades (2022) for SATB choir and organ
  1. Kyrie (3:54)
  2. Gloria (5:22)
  3. Alleluia (verse melody by John Renke) (2:18)
  4. Ego sum Pastor bonus – The Anointing of the Sick (6:48)
  5. Sanctus, Benedictus (3:41)
  6. Agnus Dei (2:33)
  1. Diffusa est gratia, Offertory of the Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary (5:50)
Requiem for the Forgotten (2020-23) for SATB choir, low strings, organ, and harp
  1. Introit (6:11)
  2. Kyrie (1:55)
  3. Commemoration: A Hymn for Ukraine (4:59)
  4. Offertory: I will lift up mine eyes (6:33)
  5. Sanctus, Benedictus (3:15)
  6. Agnus Dei (2:39)
  7. Meditation: O vos omnes (9:00)
  8. Procession to the place of rest: Pie Jesu (2:55)

The Classical Music Sentinel

...this setting of the Requiem stirs the soul. With richly harmonic and textured singing by the choir and soloists set over minimal instrumental lines, not only does the music evoke the proper sentiments, but it does so without artifice. The Benedict XVI Choir is perfectly suited for this type of music. Their seamless tonal blend, combined with simple yet genuine delivery, directs your focus on the essence of the music. ” –Jean-Yves Duperron


Messe des Malades is gently expressive and uplifting...and the massed choral portions have a sincerity and warmth that give the words a sense of timelessness in keeping with their original intent... ” –Mark J. Estren

CD HotList

the music is dense and rich but always bows to the lyrical messages of charity and devotion...the singing by the Benedict XVI Choir is consistently outstanding. ” –Rick Anderson


Conductor Richard Sparks, his vocal soloists and choristers, and the accompanying instrumentalists are totally imbued with the spirit and intent of their proceedings, and have the necessary skills to realize them. Highly recommended. ” –James A. Altena


I hear the spark of the Divine in these works, and I believe that all listeners will find their souls comforted and strengthened...gripping and moving works. ” –David DeBoor Canfield