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An order of Benedictine nuns near Avignon have just signed a record deal with Universal Music—the same label that brought you Lady GaGa and U2—for an album of Gregorian Chant.

The nuns are from the Abbaye de Notre-Dame de l’Annonciation in Le Barroux and their congregation was selected from among 70 convents around the world to record the album which is itself a follow up to the 2008 recording of the Cistercian Monks of Stift Heiligenkreuz which has sold more than a million copies.

The only bothersome thing about the video and the BBC News report is the characterization of the nuns as “reclusive.” This brings to my mind the image of a convent full of old Miss Havisham’s from Great Expectations , cut off from the world and stopped in time, with their mansion crumbling around them. But these cloistered nuns don’t remove themselves from society in contempt. As Pope Benedict observed last month, cloistered religious are the heart of the Church, that in their lives “hidden with Christ” they are “instruments of salvation for every man that the Lord has redeemed with His Blood.”

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