Sacred Music: Instruments
The bells from the Knight’s Tower call the faithful to prayer and announce significant events in the life of the Church. The Basilica’s campanile houses a 56-bell carillon, a gift of the Knights of Columbus. The bells are rung each hour, prior to Mass, and at the Angelus. Visitors can also listen to carillon recitals each Sunday at 2:30 pm while walking around the grounds of the Basilica.
The pipe organ has the ability to produce sounds which go beyond the realm of human hearing, from the rumblings of the lowest frequencies to the vibrations of the barely audible, offering a sonic metaphor for all of God’s creation uniting to sing God’s praise.
The National Shrine houses four pipe organs, adding dignity and majesty to worship, and leading thousands in prayer and praise. Three Möller organs grace the Upper Church and a magnificent mechanical action instrument abides in the Crypt Church.
Basilica organists present treasured organ literature spanning six centuries. Voluntaries selected as preludes and postludes to the Liturgy enhance the sacred environment, assisting the worshipper in prayer and praise and offering artistic expressions of beauty from countless generations of composers.
Upper Church Organs
Blessed Sacrament Chapel Organ
Crypt Church Organ