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Julie Carrick has a ministry she calls “catechetical artistry.” The professionally-trained singer combines her melodious voice with her catechetical interests to evangelize at concerts, parish missions, workshops, and seminars.
Julie works with her husband Kurt, a fellow musician, for Carrick Ministries Foundation, a non-profit they founded to continue their ministry of using music to help evangelize and catechize.
Though she began performing 18 years ago, it wasn’t until 1999 that Carrick set off on the catechetical track when a proposed record deal asked that she not speak about her Catholicism. Instead of signing, Carrick said she felt led to a “deeper catechetical approach in an artistic manner.” Today, she always mentions the Eucharist in her presentations.
Carrick’s concerts aren’t designed as rock concerts, playing only to huge numbers. The Arizona-based singer travels the world giving concerts and missions in churches of all sizes, using her music as a “tool of the Holy Spirit.”
Each of the events Carrick offers has an overarching theme. For example, “Living Our Catholic Creed,” features music, personal stories, and wisdom from St. Teresa of Avila to share how people can live the Creed in daily life. One of her favorite topics, “An Evening with Mary and the Apostles,” includes traditional and contemporary Marian songs interspersed with sharing that encourages being a witness for the faith as Mary and the Apostles were.
Carrick and her husband Kurt
perform at a concert.
Carrick also weaves her personal story with her faith. Carrick’s performance, “In the Waiting,” draws on her fight with lung cancer five years ago. Through her experience, Carrick said she learned how to find purpose and even joy in suffering. “In the Waiting” focuses on the theme of healing, and is dedicated to those touched by cancer and other serious illnesses.
Carrick travels about one-third of the year hosting events. When asked about her favorite moments, she shared that in Italy at the World Sings of Mary event, she experienced a powerful moment when she hit the high note in the song “Faith of God,” and everyone in the arena stood up with their hands lifted in praise.
Another favorite moment happened in a small town in Indiana. The Carricks arrived at the little church packed with a standing-room only crowd, with “such an energy in that room.” After the evening’s event, a couple from the crowd said they were inspired to start their own artful expression, with her needlepoint and his welding of religious statues.
Carrick is currently developing a theme of grace for a performance event inspired by St. Paul and the Suscipe (“Take, Lord, Receive”) prayer of St. Ignatius Loyola. Learn more at the Carricks’ website.