It was on this date, January 31, 1797, that Austrian composer Franz Schubert was born in Vienna. He studied the violin from age eight and the pianoforte after that, composing his first piano duet before he turned 14. Two of his songs so impressed Antonio Salieri, that the composer sought out Schubert and taught him harmony. But probably Schubert’s most popular work remains incomplete: the Unfinished Symphony in B-Minor (No. 8, D.759). Schubert also wrote an unfinished oratorio, Lazarus, and 17 unmemorable operas, but a great body of religious music. These included three Masses among other sacred music. The Catholic Encyclopedia, always eager to claim Catholic inspiration for art, makes much of Schubert’s service to church music…
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Originally published January 2003 by Ronald Bruce Meyer.
“No man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever… All men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinions in matters of religion.”