The world was born with music,” says composer Paiva Netto, President Preacher of the Religion of God, of the Christ, and of the Holy Spirit.
His melodious creations reveal the spiritual and social purpose of this divine art, which kindles the noblest feelings in human beings through “Music that goes beyond music,” as he also affirms.
Just a few days after its launch, Negrada– Jesus, o Grande Libertador! [Negrada–Jesus, the Great Liberator!] achieved an impressive sales mark in Brazil, making Paiva Netto one of the great Brazilian composers of classical music.
Works like Prece para ter Tranquilidade [Prayer for Tranquility], which is part of his Oratorio O Mistério de Deus Revelado [The Mystery of God Revealed], Sinfonia Apocalipse [Apocalypse Symphony]—produced in partnership with conductor Almeida Prado (1943-2010)—or even his Hail Marys (which he composed in a tribute to several Brazilian states) have filled the Souls of generations with enthusiasm and are also applauded by renowned conductors and musicians of several nationalities.
With regard to the spiritual role of his works, Paiva Netto points out:
“I am not composing music just for the sake of music. I am doing it also as a way of preaching the ever-renewing message of Christ. The moral message of this Oratorio [The Mystery of God Revealed] is that when we are in tune with God, in harmony with Christ’s Love, everything becomes possible for us.”
The Mystery of God Revealed, for example, was composed for choir and orchestra and has been recorded in six languages (English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish). Its Portuguese version has sold more than 550,000 copies and earned a double platinum disc.
Renowned choirs and orchestras have already performed his compositions in memorable concerts. In 1983, in the distinguished Municipal Theater of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Isaac Karabtchevsky conducted the Brazilian Symphony Orchestra, which performed several pieces by Paiva Netto. The Svetoslav Obretenov National Philharmonic Choir of Bulgaria has also performed the composer’s songs, together with the Symphonic Orchestra of Sofia, conducted by Ricardo Averbach. The United States also play a role in this musical journey. At the invitation of the United Nations, in April 2000, the work of Paiva Netto The New Commandment of Jesus was sung by the Good Will Ecumenical Choir. It was the first Brazilian choir to perform at the UN.
In April 2006, the choir of the Convent Avenue Baptist Church in New York sang the Oratorio The Mystery of God Revealed for the very first time in English, a work in which Paiva Netto melodically addresses the Gospel and the Apocalypse of the Divine Master.
Other songs in the album are Glory, I See the Light of the New World, Prayer for Tranquility, and The New Commandment of Jesus. This performance was conducted by the respected American conductor and professor Gregory Hopkins, who said, moved, at that time:
“In the name of God and in the name of the people of the Convent Avenue Baptist Church, thank you very much! We’re very happy to have contributed our small part towards making history. We thank God for this opportunity of also presenting the message that Paiva Netto conveyed through his music, which brings the Peace of God to the world.”
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Apostle of Good Will
In 2018, during the celebrations of the 62 years of work of Brother Paiva in the Organizations of the Good Will of God, the gospel sextet Harlem Inspiration, with their contagious joy, participated in the music video “Apostle of Good Will,” a Legionnaire song recorded in other languages as well.
Hopkins—who had rehearsed the sextet and was present at the filming in Harlem— suggested including the facade of the historic Apollo Theater among the sites chosen for the video. He explained the reason behind this:
“We have the opportunity of standing right in front of the iconic Apollo, where so many of our African American heroes in the performance venue have begun their careers, including Michael Jackson (1958-2009) and Nat King Cole (1919-1965) on 125th Street, which has been renamed for Martin Luther King (1929-1968), one of the great heroes of the civil rights movement.
And that’s the kind of thing that the Legion of Good Will is about: rights for all, happiness and peace for all. Happy anniversary to Brother Paiva Netto! It was great coordinating with you before, when we did your work with the Sanctuary Choir for our Easter concert.
And now we have another work that our people are very excited about, wishing you a happy anniversary also. God bless you as you continue your great work.”