The Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles, are a small choir (18 voices) of nuns from a monastery in the Kansas City, Missouri, area. Probably every female convent choir has issued a recording of some kind or another, and it is a little hard to account for the runaway success of this group. Easter at Ephesus is one in a series of albums tied to parts of the liturgical year, and, backed by the marketing muscle of the large Universal Music Group, the Benedictines have notched strong sales. They are young singers and offer a consistent sound that will appeal to those using the album primarily for contemplative purposes. But the mix of pieces, ranging from chant and medieval polyphony to pieces by Catholic scholars to semi-popular hymns like Jesus Christ Is Ris'n Today (track 9), is varied enough to keep listeners guessing but homogeneous enough to deliver reassurance and calm. Listeners using it for purposes of religious celebration are going to be delighted with the album, as are those who've enjoyed previous Benedictines of Mary releases. The sound is not an example of virtuoso engineering, but the choir seems comfortable in its own Priory, and the environment ultimately works toward the project's success.
AllMusic Review by James Manheim