Br. Al Mascia, OFM at a recent performance of his show honoring Solanus Casey.

“And he may be celebrated annually on the 30th of July in the places and ways established by law.”   

Archbishop Allen Vigneron, local ordinary of the Archdiocese of Detroit, read those words of Pope Francis regarding Solanus Casey, OFM Cap., on the occasion of his beatification, which took place at Ford Field in Detroit back in 2017. 

Just a few days ago, on July 30, Michael Radomski and I brought our little Solanus Casey musical, “More Love than Skill: A Saint and His Fiddle,” to the people of Holy Name Parish in Birmingham, Michigan. That show marked the third for the month of July. The other two were performed at the Weber Conference and Retreat Center in Adrian, and Lourdes Senior Community in Waterford.  

Reporter Gabriella Patti of Detroit Catholic attended the performance in Waterford and wrote a wonderful feature story about the musical that was published in their July 28 edition. Now, after over 20 shows, we’re beginning to get a little media attention! 

A recent performance of Al Mascia’s Solanus Casey musical, “More Love than Skill: A Saint and His Fiddle.” Photos by Steve Klaper.

But, while every performance has been memorable, last Sunday’s will stand out! We played to over 200 people and, because it took place on Solanus’ feast day, the parish pulled out all the stops and had a catered reception following the show, complete with waiters and bartenders. Pastoral Associate Deborah Shinder even made sure that all the tablecloths were Franciscan brown!  

Upcoming shows so far will be at the Ann Arbor Dominicans’ motherhouse, Guardian Angels Catholic Church in Clawson, St. Collette in Livonia, and St. Hugo of the Hills in Bloomfield, and — still in the works — the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament Apostolic Center of Arts and Culture here in Detroit.  

Sharing the remarkable life of this fellow friar in story, music and song, as well as spreading the word of his powerful example, continues to fill me with great joy and purpose. Santo subito! 

– For more on the show and what inspires Al, read Gabriella’s article at Franciscan Friar pays tribute to Blessed Solanus Casey through musical one-man show- Detroit Catholic.