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Basilica to close in August for organ installation

| Saturday, July 23, 2016

The Basilica of the Sacred Heart will close from Aug. 1 to Aug. 14 for the next phase of the installation of the new Murdy Family Organ, the Basilica announced on Twitter.

1449707107-7704e8eea790181-700x424Michael Yu | The Observer

The Murdy Family Organ is replacing the current Holtkamp Organ and is set to be completed by Christmas 2016, according to a University press release in December.

The Basilica will continue celebrating daily mass Monday through Friday at 11:30 a.m. in the Sacred Heart Parish Crypt, and confessions will be heard from 11 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., according to the announcement.

Andrew McShane, associate director for music and liturgy in the Office of Campus Ministry, said the Holtkamp Organ was “was not designed to be played as frequently as it is now.”

“Two Masses each day along with choir rehearsals and ongoing student practice sessions have created serious operating issues,” he said in the release. “The Basilica has simply outgrown the current organ and there is a need for a larger, better functioning organ to occupy the space and sustain the Basilica for years to come.”

The Basilica last closed in December for renovations to create space for the new organ, which is set to arrive in August, according to the release.

The Murdy Family Organ comes from Tacoma, Washington, where Paul Fritts and Co. Organ Builders are designing and constructing it at night and in off hours, according to the press release.

The new organ, in addition to new floors installed in the Basilica in 2014, are the result of a donation from Wayne and Diana Murdy.

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