Cali, Colombia: A Colombian nun-turned-rapper in sports sneakers will perform for Pope Francis when he visits her country this week.
Maria Valentina de los Angeles is a member of a group which will sing the official song during the pontiff’s visit as he greets the crowds. It is “an opportunity to show him our love the way that we know, which is through music,” Maria Valentina, 28, said.
“The cool thing about rap is that it sticks in your head easily. And when it has the depth of truth, which is Christ, then it is even more striking.”
The petite nun performs a rap interlude among the cheerful Latin beats of the song “Let’s Take The First Step” by the United Catholic Musicians. The ensemble headhunted her after she won a reality-show competition on television called “Another Level.” The United Catholic Musicians hailed the naturalness of her rapping and invited her to compose and perform the rap interlude.
Francis visits Colombia, a Catholic country of 47 million, from September 6 to 10. He is credited with aiding a peace deal signed last year between the Colombian government and the Leftist FARC rebel force after half a century of war.
“Colombia welcomes you with open arms,” goes Maria Valentina’s rap. “With one voice happily we say to you: blessed be God, who in his wisdom has brought you to our land to be its guide.”
She says she likes the rebellious spirit of rap. For her, it chimes with Francis’s own call to the young to “make trouble” — his way of telling them to fearlessly share their faith.