Friday, December 19, 2008

Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ (Dawn Mass)

For Dec 25, 2008 which is the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, we are going to sing the following for the Dawn Mass:
  1. Procession: O Come All Ye Faithful
  2. Introit: Lux fulgebit
  3. Kyrie II (Fons Bonitatis)
  4. Gloria II
  5. Gradual: Benedictus
  6. Alleluia: Dominus regnavit
  7. Credo IV
  8. Offertory: Deus firmavit
  9. Offertory hymn: Jesu Redemptor Omnium
  10. Sanctus II
  11. Agnus Dei II
  12. Communion hymn: Panis Angelicus
  13. Communion: Exsulta, filia Sion
  14. Recession: Joy To The World
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Sunday within the Octave of Christmas

For Dec 28, 2008 which is the Sunday within the Octave of the Nativity of Our Lord & Saviour Jesus Christ, we are going to sing the following:
  1. Procession: O Come, All Ye Faithful
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Dum medium silentium
  4. Kyrie VIII (De angelis)
  5. Gloria VIII
  6. Gradual: Speciosus forma
  7. Alleluia: Dominus regnavit
  8. Credo IV
  9. Offertory: Deus enim firmavit
  10. Offertory hymn: Salve Regina Caelitum
  11. Sanctus VIII
  12. Agnus Dei VIII
  13. Communion hymn: Resonet In Laudibus
  14. Communion: Tolle puerum
  15. Recession: Angels We Have Heard On High
Click on the links to hear samples where available

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ (Midnight Mass)

For Dec 25, 2008 which is the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, we are going to sing the following for the Midnight Mass:
  1. Procession: Adeste Fideles
  2. Introit: Dominus dixit ad me
  3. Kyrie VIII (De angelis)
  4. Gloria VIII
  5. Gradual: Tecum principium
  6. Alleluia: Dominus dixit ad me
  7. Credo IV
  8. Offertory: Laetentur caeli
  9. Offertory hymn: Jesu Redemptor Omnium
  10. Sanctus VIII
  11. Agnus Dei VIII
  12. Communion hymn: Panis Angelicus
  13. Communion: In splendoribus
  14. Recession: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
Click on the links to hear samples where available

Saturday, December 06, 2008

An Open Letter to Praise and Worship Musicians

from the NLM's Jeffrey Tucker...

You are part of a Catholic generation that has chosen music as a path of spiritual discovery and expression within Catholicism, and music has been central to your own path toward greater understanding of the faith and its place in your life. You are using this gift to give to others, precisely as St. Paul instructed the Corinthians to do. You do this in retreat settings but, more and more, in worship settings, including Mass, as a means of helping others find what you have found.

You are not unaware that the style of music you have chosen has no liturgical precedent in the history of the faith. It is not that you have overtly rejected tradition in favor of innovation. Many of you have written to me that you would greatly appreciate a parish setting in which Gregorian chant and polyphony (the only two musical forms explicitly cited at Vatican II as proper to the Roman Rite) were sung as part of Mass.

But this is not the parish setting you inherited and it doesn't seem like an option now. The historical context here is everything. You were the third generation raised after the major changes following the Second Vatican Council. When your parents were very young, the standard music was new and innovative, but by the time you heard it, it had grown old and tired.

And there didn't seem to be much of it: the same few Glorias and Holy Holys, and about twenty or so songs sung again and again, most of it suggestive of half-hearted attempts at folk music of some sort. This was what was considered "traditional Catholic music," and it didn't seem to mean much to young people by the time you were coming of age.

The music problem reflected a larger problem. In your childhood and early teen years, you were part of a parish structure that had settled into a kind of routine that you found to be uneventful and static, even faithless. The catechism materials used in your CCD classes, even for confirmation, were unchallenging and cliché. The adult teachers and leaders in your parish lacked enthusiasm.

Even Mass, as much as you tried to throw yourself into it, began to seem blasé. There were new and odd names for everything: confession behind a screen became face-to-face reconciliation, CCD became CFF, Mass became the "Eucharistic celebration," processionals were "gathering songs," and you knew nothing of traditional devotions like Holy Hours and novenas. The ghosts of the Catholic past were everywhere in movies and popular culture: people kneeling for communion, priests in black for Requiem Masses, Latin, elaborate vestments, stories of rigorous server training, incense, and tough nuns in schools – but you knew none of this. In many ways, the world in which you grew up had already been thoroughly de-Catholicized, and this was tragically true even of your own parish.

Gregorian chant was the same. It variously became popular on the radio and in bestselling CDs but it was sung by monks in far-off lands. It wasn't the music of the parish. Even such common tunes such as Pange Lingua and Adoro Te—the last remnants of a repertoire of tens of thousands of chants—were finally put to rest sometime in the 1980s. No one in the parish knew a thing about chant, and neither did there seem to be a way to find out more.

It was your misfortune that you inherited what can only be described as a desert, and you can vaguely recall being bored with the whole thing. At some point in your teen years, that changed with a retreat or a parish mission or possibly World Youth Day or some other occasion. There was a spiritual awakening in your life, and it centered on the realization of the powerful presence that Christ can have in your life. It brought you back to the confessional you had long neglected, and gave you a new appreciation of the Real Presence in the Eucharist, as well as the power of the Rosary and of features of Catholic life. This was a transforming event in your life.

This event was tied to the form of music called Praise and Worship, with its characteristic repeating phrases and dramatic beats and sounds. You could hear it on the radio. You bought the CDs. You followed the Catholic bands of the new generation. And yet in your own parish, the music was very different. It was then and still largely remains that "traditional Catholic music" from the 1970s that had made such a splash in the years immediately following the Council but didn't inspire you in the same way.

This was when you decided to apply your own musical skills to making a difference, usually for a Mass set aside as Life Teen or the Youth Mass. No one said that there was anything strange about this. Sure, some people objected to the style of music, that it was more like rock music than sacred music. But this really an argument about taste. Why should you be expected to adopt the tastes of your parents and their parents? Their music too was based on the style of their times, and it doesn't speak to your generation. This new Praise and Worship music connects with your time and your own religious revival. To sing it for Mass is only a matter of sharing your gift with others, in response to the call for evangelization.

What about Gregorian chant? You grant that there is an appeal here. You among many have the impression that choosing a chant rather than a Praise and Worship piece is merely a judgment call, a choice based on resources and timing. It is possible to sing Adoro Te instead of something else. In so doing, you are doing what Vatican II called for. All the better, perhaps, is to add some good chords and rhythm underneath it and sing it in a more familiar style.

What is truly tragic is that no one has alerted you to the real significance of chant. It goes far beyond using a chant as one of the four songs you can pick for Mass. The Gregorian chant grew up alongside the Mass itself, one step at a time. Some might date from the early Church, which sang the Psalms exclusively. The tradition developed as the liturgy developed over the next one thousand years as the parts of the Mass were organized and systemized into a liturgical year. There was music to go with the prayers. It was sung by martyrs and saints and heard in all times and all nations where the faith thrived.

The essential musical structure of the Mass as it emerged in the middle ages had an Entrance prayer that was set to chant. This is called the Introit. Sometimes you hear the first word of the chant used to describe the Mass of the day. This is where we get the terms "Gaudete Sunday," "Laetare Sunday," and "Requiem Mass." What is called the "gathering song" or the "processional hymn" is really a replacement for this Introit.

When Vatican II said that the chant should have primacy, what it means is that this Introit should be sung, and that when it is not possible to sing it, the preference for chant still remains.

It is true with other parts of the Mass too. The Offertory is not a musical intermission but the name of a real prayer that is set to music. The same is true of Communion. These are gorgeous chants. Even the Psalm has a melody in the chant books. The more you get to know these treasures, the more it strikes you just how unified the text and the music are. Their assignment is not at all random.

Often the melody clearly reflects the story of the text, so that the melody goes up when speaking of Heaven and down when speaking of humility. The complexity of them can be enrapturing the more you study them. You find beautiful presentations of Gospel narratives and parables. Each chant serves a particular musical function. The Introit and Offertory are processional chants, for example, so they have a forward motion with less elaborate musical expression on individual words. The Psalm chants are more for reflection, so they are long and elaborate.

The chant, then, is not just one choice among many. It is the music of the Mass itself, and the only form of music that truly qualifies by definition. The chants mentioned above are called "propers" and they change week to week. There are also chants for the "ordinary" of the Mass, so-called because their text remains the same. There are parts for the people: Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Agnus Dei. You have heard a few of these, most likely the ones people have started to sing for Lent. But the Church has given us fully 18 sets of these pieces of music, and you can see from their structure that they are intended for everyone to sing.

In the experience of our parish, people can pick up these ordinary chants rather quickly. They love singing them. They don't need accompaniment. They use the human voice alone, the very instrument that God has given all of us. This way there is an absence of elitism in this music. It needs no specialists who know how to play piano and guitar and drums. Actually, you don't even need the music really. In fact, for the first thousand years of Christianity, the chant was sung without being written out in a way that could be widely distributed. It was learned and carried forward by frequency of use, the way people learn "Praise and Worship" music today.

There are other marks of chant that make it distinctive. It lacks a regular beat-style rhythm such as that we hear in rock, country, soul, blues, or any other style. It is what is called plainsong, so there is an underlying pulse but it doesn't cause you to want to tap your toe or dance. What it does do is draw the senses upward toward the Heavens. It assists in the goal of all liturgy, which is to take us out of time and help us pray and listen to eternal things. In contrast, music with a beat keeps us grounded and internal.

Another feature of chant is its humility. A major problem with Praise and Worship music is that it tends to focus everyone on the person doing the performing. The bands are featured in the front of the church. The band members are showered with complements. The singing style elicits a kind of egoism that probably makes you uncomfortable but is integral to popular styles. Chant is completely different because it does not seek to put the talent of the singer on exhibit. Instead, it is all about community prayer. The ego is buried. It doesn't unleash the self but rather requires a submission of self to holiness. In this way, it is like the faith: as St. John Baptist said, let me decrease and let him increase in me. This is what the chant does – what the chant requires.

You are right to suspect that chant requires a substantial change of pace. It is not just a matter of substituting one song for another. The chant leads the embrace of a completely different approach to liturgy itself. The music serves the liturgy and the liturgy serves God. Where does that leave the singers and the community? Precisely where we should be: not as consumers but as servants.

You are all too aware that you were cheated out of a robust form of Catholicism when growing up, not by design but merely because of the unfortunate timing. These were difficult days. In the same way that many aspects of the faith were not well presented to you, the music of the Church has not been presented to you either. But you were born into these times, as a musician, for a reason. Perhaps you are being called to make a difference.

The Pope has made the restoration of sacred music a centerpiece of his liturgical goals. He speaks about the issue often, and has written so much about it. Perhaps it is time to consider that he is onto something profoundly important here.

The Pope speaks of "two fundamental types of music." One he associates with Apollo, the ancient mythical god of light and reason. "This is the music that draws senses into spirit and so brings man to wholeness. It does not abolish the senses, but inserts them into the unity of this creature that is man. It elevates the spirit precisely by wedding it to the senses, and it elevates the senses by uniting them with the spirit. Thus this kind of music is an expression of man’s special place in the general structure of being."

The other type of music he says is Dionysian: "It drags man into the intoxication of the senses, crushes ra¬tionality, and subjects the spirit to the senses." Rock music may have merit outside of liturgy but in liturgy, the Pope writes that it is "in opposition to Christian worship" because its musical structure encourages people released from themselves by the experience of being part of a crowd and by the emotional shock of rhythm, noise, and special lighting effects. However, in the ecstasy of having all their defenses torn down, the participants sink, as it were, beneath the elemental force of the universe.

Where does Praise and Worship fit into this divide? Be honest with yourself and consider that it tends more toward Dionysius than Apollo. Every Pope since the earliest years has made a similar distinction between the sacred and the profane, and it was Pius X who stated so clearly that the standard by which all music at Catholic liturgy must be judged is the chant.

That doesn't mean that chant is the only music appropriate for Mass. Renaissance composers sought to elaborate on the chant with new forms that retained its spirit, and many modern composers are doing the same. There is also a place for English chant and for newly composed Psalms. What the chant provides in these cases is a standard to measure its suitability. It is essential that it remain the foundational song of the Catholic Church, for if we don't know or understand the foundation, it is impossible to make any judgment at all.

If the enterprise of learning something completely new sounds daunting, keep in mind that no one can become completely familiar with all chant. That would take several lifetimes. We are all in a state of relative ignorance on this subject as compared with the mind of the Church and the experience of tradition. It is the same with Catholic theology: no one can know it all. But that should not stop us from learning what we can, practicing what we can, and doing our part to hand on the tradition to the next generation.

We have a job to do, a job that we have been assigned. We are not the first to have been given this task. At other points in history, the chant was nearly completely lost, buried in the confusion over passing musical fashion. It returned again and against through the prayerful efforts of faithful musicians who were willing to give of themselves to bring the beauty back and make it live in our parishes in glorious ways.

The first step is to encounter the chant and consider is beauty. "The encounter with the beautiful," writes the Pope, "can become the wound of the arrow that strikes the heart and in this way opens our eyes, so that later, from this experience, we take the criteria for judgment and can correctly evaluate."

Perhaps the chant will touch you as it has touch me and millions upon millions of others since the earliest years of the faith, and will continue to touch people until the end of time. If it does, you too might enter into the stream of living persons who have sung the chant and played some role in bringing to the world the most beautiful music this side of heaven.

Sacred Music Colloquium


I challenge any of the dioceses here in the region to organize something similar, if they are really true in wanting to keep the "spirit of Vatican II"! For those who are not familiar with Vatican II, it says:

"The treasure of sacred music is to be preserved and fostered with great care. Choirs must be diligently promoted, especially in cathedral churches; but bishops and other pastors of souls must be at pains to ensure that, whenever the sacred action is to be celebrated with song, the whole body of the faithful may be able to contribute that active participation which is rightly theirs, as laid down in Art. 28 and 30."

and...

"The Church acknowledges Gregorian chant as specially suited to the Roman liturgy: therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services."

and...

"But other kinds of sacred music, especially polyphony, are by no means excluded from liturgical celebrations, so long as they accord with the spirit of the liturgical action, as laid down in Art. 30."

and...

"In the Latin Church the pipe organ is to be held in high esteem, for it is the traditional musical instrument which adds a wonderful splendor to the Church's ceremonies and powerfully lifts up man's mind to God and to higher things."

All quotes taken from the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy Sacrosanctum Concilium.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Lauridsen's O Magnum Mysterium


Sung by the UST Alumni Singers (The Pontifical University of Santo Tomas, Philippines). Another fine example of modern, yet liturgically sound, sacred music.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Carols Before Midnight Mass

Here is the order of carols/hymns to be sung before Christmas Midnight Mass begins.
  1. I Wonder As I Wander (Appalachian carol)
  2. Adam Lay Ybounden (Ord)
  3. Alma Redemptoris (Plainsong - Simple tone)
  4. Ave Maria (T.L. de Victoria)
  5. Lo, How A Rose E'er Blooming
  6. Congregation Hymn: Once In Royal David's City
  7. Congregation Hymn: O Little Town Of Bethlehem (tune: Forest Green)
  8. Congregation Hymn: Silent Night
  9. O Holy Night
  10. Congregation Hymn: In Dulci Jubilo
  11. Congregation Hymn: What Star Is This
  12. Congregation Hymn: O Come All Ye Faithful
  13. Quem Pastores Laudevere
  14. Congregation Hymn: Angels We Have Heard On High
  15. Congregation Hymn: Hark The Herald Angels Sing
Click on the links to hear samples.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

3rd Sunday of Advent

For Dec 14, 2008 which is the 3rd Sunday of Advent, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Veni, Veni, Emmanuel
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Gaudete in Domino
  4. Kyrie XVII b
  5. Gradual: Qui sedes, Domine
  6. Alleluia: Excita, Domine
  7. Credo IV
  8. Offertory: Benedixisti, Domine
  9. Offertory hymn: Creator Alme Siderum
  10. Sanctus XVII
  11. Agnus Dei XVII
  12. Communion hymn: Verbum Supernum
  13. Communion: Dicite: Pusillanimes
  14. Recession: Lo, He Comes With Clouds Descending
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Festival of 9 Lessons & Carols in Kuala Lumpur


SONGS & READINGS FOR THE FESTIVAL OF 9 LESSONS & CAROLS
Prelude: Gloria (Vivaldi)
Anthems: A Christmas Round & Riu, riu, chiu
Congregational Opening Hymn: Once in Royal David’s City
1st Carol: Adam Lay YBounden (Ord)
1st Reading
2nd Carol: In the Bleak Midwinter
2nd Reading
Congregational Hymn: Angels We Have Heard on High
3rd Carol: Ett Nyfött Barn
3rd Reading
4th Carol: Stille Nacht
4th Reading
5th Carol: Mary’s Boy-Child
5th Reading
6th Carol: Mariä Wiegenlied
6th Reading
Congregational Hymn: O Little Town of Bethlehem
7th Carol: Bailero
7th Reading
8th Carol: The Coventry Carol
8th Reading
9th Carol: Still, still, still
9th Reading
Closing Congregational Hymn: O Come All Ye Faithful
Postlude: O Magnum Mysterium (Lauridsen)

Disclaimer: This is not meant to be an endorsement of the Presbyterian religion, but merely for the sake of exposure to quality sacred music.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Last Sunday after Pentecost

For Nov 23, 2008 which is the Last Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Holy God, We Praise Thy Name
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Dicit Dominus: Ego
  4. Kyrie XI (Orbis Factor)
  5. Gloria XI
  6. Gradual: Liberasti nos
  7. Alleluia: De profundis
  8. Credo III
  9. Offertory: De profundis
  10. Offertory hymn: O Maria, Virgo Pia
  11. Sanctus XI
  12. Agnus Dei XI
  13. Communion hymn: Ave Verum Corpus
  14. Communion: Amen dico vobis: quidquid
  15. Recession: Salve Regina (simple tone)
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

What shall we name this?

From somewhere closer to home, we have some Filipino inmates asked (or forced?) to perform some kind of dance with a thousand arms, during a mass by Cardinal Vidal. Look at this video that I stumbled upon accidentally:

and the first thing that came to my mind was this:

Know why "Rock Masses" are such pathetic lame ideas when teenagers know they are better off going elsewhere for rock music? I guess the lesson here is.. if Catholics wants to imitate something, they'd better do a darn good job at imitating, else forget it because it will look like a cheap imitation at first sight.

Dedication of the Archbasilica of the Holy Saviour

For November 9, 2008 which is the Dedication of the Archbasilica of the Most Holy Saviour (a.k.a. the Basilica of St. John Lateran), being the mother and mistress of all churches throughout the world, by virtue of being the Bishop of Rome's cathedral, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Faith Of Our Fathers
  2. Introit: Terribilis
  3. Kyrie IV (Cunctipotens Genitor Deus)
  4. Gloria IV
  5. Gradual: Locus iste
  6. Alleluia: Adorabo ad templum
  7. Credo I
  8. Offertory: Domine Deus, in simplicitate
  9. Offertory Hymn: Tu Es Pastor & Magnificat
  10. Sanctus IV
  11. Agnus Dei IV
  12. Communion Hymn: Jesu Rex Admirabilis (G.P. da Palestrina)
  13. Communion: Domus mea
  14. Recession: Christ Is Made The Sure Foundation (J.M. Neale)
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Pius XII reciting Pater Noster

This is THE right (some will read that as Roman!) way of Latin pronunciation.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

All Saints

For November 1, 2008 which is the feast of All Saints, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Come, Holy Ghost, Creator Blest
  2. Introit: Gaudeamus... Sanctorum omnium
  3. Kyrie II (Fons Bonitatis)
  4. Gloria II
  5. Gradual: Timete Dominum
  6. Alleluia: Venite ad me
  7. Offertory: Iustorum animae
  8. Offertory Hymn: O Sanctissima
  9. Sanctus II
  10. Agnus Dei II
  11. Communion: Beati mundo corde
  12. Recession: Ye Watchers And Ye Holy Ones (R.V. Williams)
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Twenty-fifth Sunday after Pentecost

For Nov 2, 2008 which is the 25th Sunday after Pentecost (All Souls Day is transferred to Monday), we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: O God Of Loveliness
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Dicit Dominus: Ego
  4. Kyrie XI (Orbis Factor)
  5. Gloria XI
  6. Gradual: Liberasti nos
  7. Alleluia: De profundis
  8. Credo III
  9. Offertory: De profundis
  10. Offertory hymn: Languentibus In Purgatorio
  11. Sanctus XI
  12. Agnus Dei XI
  13. Communion hymn: Jesu Rex Admirabilis (G.P. da Palestrina)
  14. Communion: Amen dico vobis: quidquid
  15. Recession: Hail, True Victim, Life And Light
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Nova Organi Harmonia

Maestro Jeff Ostrowski has graciously made available for free, the Nova Organi Harmonia Gregorian chant organ accompaniments here. Also listed are other accompaniment materials. This is definitely a treasure trove for church organists everywhere. This was made possible by Corpus Christi Watershed, the same non-profit Catholic institute for the arts that commissioned the Chabanel Psalms.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Christ the King

For October 26, 2008 which is the feast of the Christ the King (last Sunday in October), we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: To Jesus Christ, Our Sov'reign King
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Dignus est Agnus
  4. Kyrie VIII (De Angelis)
  5. Gloria VIII
  6. Gradual: Dominabitur
  7. Alleluia: Potestas eius
  8. Credo IV
  9. Offertory: Postula a me
  10. Offertory hymn: Ave Maria (J. Arcadelt)
  11. Sanctus VIII
  12. Agnus Dei VIII
  13. Communion hymn: Panis Angelicus
  14. Communion: Sedebit Dominus
  15. Recession: The King of Love My Shepherd Is (H.W. Baker) followed by chorus of Christus Vincit
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Josef Rheinberger's Abendlied

I personally feel this piece is one of the better German masterpieces of sacred music that I've sung in choir. These are the kind of vernacular music that should be permitted in church, not "Come On And Celebrate" or that campfire song "Pass It On".

Stay with us, because it is towards evening, and the day is now far spent. - Luke 24:29

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

22nd Sunday after Pentecost

For October 12, 2008 which is the 22nd Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Si iniquitates
  4. Kyrie IX (Cum Iubilo)
  5. Gloria IX
  6. Gradual: Ecce quam bonum
  7. Alleluia: Qui timent Dominum
  8. Credo IV
  9. Offertory: Recordare mei
  10. Offertory hymn: Ave Maria (C. Monteverdi)
  11. Sanctus IX
  12. Agnus Dei IX
  13. Communion hymn: O Esca Viatorum (SGH#228b)
  14. Communion: Ego clamavi
  15. Recession: Hail, Queen of Heaven
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Pamintuan's Pater Noster

A very sublime Pater Noster, sung by the Philipine Madrigal Singers, composed by John August Pamintuan. Proof that modern sacred music can be done well.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost

For September 28, 2008 which is the 20th Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Holy God, We Praise Thy Name
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Omnia quae fecisti
  4. Kyrie IX (Cum Iubilo)
  5. Gloria IX
  6. Gradual: Oculi omnium
  7. Alleluia: Paratum cor meum
  8. Credo III
  9. Offertory: Super flumina Babylonis
  10. Offertory hymn: Inviolata
  11. Sanctus IX
  12. Agnus Dei IX
  13. Communion hymn: Cor, Arca Legem Continens
  14. Communion: Memento verbi tui
  15. Recession: Soul Of My Savior
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Exaltation of the Holy Cross

For September 14, 2008 which is the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Crown Him With Many Crowns
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Nos autem gloriari
  4. Kyrie IV (Cunctipotens genitor Deus)
  5. Gloria IV
  6. Gradual: Christus factus est
  7. Alleluia: Dulce lignum, dulce clavos
  8. Credo I
  9. Offertory: Protege, Domine
  10. Offertory hymn: Crux fidelis (R. Kühnel)
  11. Sanctus IV
  12. Agnus Dei IV
  13. Communion hymn: Vexilla Regis Prodeunt (SGH#182c)
  14. Communion: Per signum crucis
  15. Recession: Hail Redeemer, King Divine (C. Rigby)
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Pope underscores importance of music for transmitting experiences of the soul

Castelgandolfo, Aug 25, 2008 / 08:39 pm (CNA).- Pope Benedict XVI expressed gratitude for the concert performed in his honor at the Swiss Hall of the Apostolic Palace in Castel Gandolfo this weekend, and in his remarks at the conclusion of the concert he emphasized the importance of music in transmitting the profound experiences of the soul.

After thanking Ivonne Timoianu, who played the violoncello and the former Austrian ambassador to the Holy See, Christoph Cornaro, who played piano, for the “magisterial performance” of Franz Schubert’s “Winter Journey,” Benedict XVI noted that the piece describes “the intense atmosphere of sad loneliness caused by his [Schubert’s] delicate state of health and his sentimental and professional disappointments.”

“It is an interior journey that the celebrated Austrian composer wrote in 1827, just one year before his premature death at the age of 31,” the Pope added.

“When Schubert brings a poetic text into his universe of sound, he performs it through a melodic link that penetrates the soul with sweetness, bringing the listener to feel his same nostalgic consummation, the same call of that truth of the heart that goes beyond all rationality. In this way a picture is born that speaks of genuine everyday life, of nostalgia, of introspection and of the future,” the Holy Father continued.

“The spontaneous and exuberant young Schubert was successful in communicating—to us here tonight as well—what he lived and experienced. He is worthy therefore of the universal acclaim that is given to this illustrious genius of music, who honors European civilization and the great culture and spirituality of Christian and Catholic Austria.”

“Comforted interiorly by the splendid musical experience of tonight, we renew our gratitude to those who have promoted this concert and those who have magnificently performed it,” the Pontiff said in conclusion.

Source: Catholic News Agency

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Happy Feast

A very happy feast of our Blessed Mother's Assumption into Heaven to all of you! Here's something for the senses on this solemn feast.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

CDW Issues Directives on the Use and Translation of the Name of God in the Liturgy and Liturgical Music

The Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments recently issued directives on the use of “the Name of God” in the Sacred Liturgy. Here are the directives:



You can read the entire text here: Letter to the Bishop's Conferences on "the Name of God"

Presumably this would retroactively effect some popular liturgical music that has been used in many English speaking parishes following the Council, including by the likes of Fr. Dan Schutte, S.J.

Source: NLM

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost

For August 24, 2008 which is the 15th Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: O God Almighty Father
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Inclina, Domine
  4. Kyrie IX (Cum Iubilo)
  5. Gloria IX
  6. Gradual: Bonum est confiteri
  7. Alleluia: Quoniam Deus
  8. Credo III
  9. Offertory: Exspectans exspectavi
  10. Offertory hymn: Ave Maris Stella (K. Ett)
  11. Sanctus IX
  12. Agnus Dei IX
  13. Communion hymn: Adoro Te Devote
  14. Communion: Panis, quem ego dedero
  15. Recession: Immaculate Mary (Lourdes refrain)
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost

For August 10, 2008 which is the 13th Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Praise To The Holiest
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Respice, Domine
  4. Kyrie IX (Cum Iubilo)
  5. Gloria IX
  6. Gradual: Respice, Domine
  7. Alleluia: Domine, refugium
  8. Credo III
  9. Offertory: In te speravi
  10. Offertory hymn: Cantate Domino (G. Pitoni)
  11. Sanctus IX
  12. Agnus Dei IX
  13. Communion hymn: Lauda, Jerusalem
  14. Communion: Panem de caelo
  15. Recession: Salve Regina (simple tone)
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Motets during a Requiem Mass

Something useful from a Q&A forum:

Q: Can you tell me if the Panis Angelicus and the Ave Maria can be properly sung at a Missa Cantata Requiem Mass during the Offertory and Communion times only? If sung, would this be following the Rubrics according to the allowance now (1962 Missal)?

A: St. Pius X's motu proprio on church music, "Tra le Sollecitudini" disallows MOST solo-singing (as distinct from the liturgical intoning done by one or more chanters).

That said, it is PERMISSIBLE to sing "Ave Maria" during the Offertory of a Requiem Mass, FOLLOWING the chanting of the proper Offertory text.

However, since the Requiem Offertory, "Domine Iesu Christe" is virtually the ONLY Offertory in the Latin Rite which retains an obligatory Verse, "Hostias et preces," it is likely that there wouldn't be TIME to sing Ave Maria, unless the Offertory is sung to a VERY simple formula, or recto-tono.

The Offertory PROPER should be given pride of place. And the celebrant shouldn't be kept waiting on account of the singing of "Ave Maria."

In passing, most of the Offertory Verses are now available, either in Dom Karl Ott's original "Offertoriale" (out of print), or in Solesmes new printing, "Offertoriale Triplex", which includes the Transalpine rhythmic neums along with the "standard" Gregorian notation. Their use has been permitted since the 1930s, along with Chants Abreges and various other Desclee/Solesmes publications from that period.

Schubert's "Ave Maria" should NOT be used, UNLESS the "corrected" version with the complete Latin text is sung, and even then it is an occasion of scandal ... he wrote it for his mistress, with a non-liturgical German text. The Latin came later.

The Bach-Gounod is less offensive, though still "operatic."

The Franck or the Arcadelt (both found in the St. Gregory Hymnal) are more suitable.

"Pie Iesu" from the Durufle or Faure Requiem would be more appropriate at the Offertory, unless it is sung following the Elevations (which used to be the custom).

There is no particular problem with singing Franck's or Lambillotte's "Panis Angelicus" at Communion-time, particularly if there is a general communion of the faithful, as long as the Communion Antiphon is sung FIRST.

There is some confusion about that.

In the days when general communions were not the rule, singing the Communion after the celebrant's Communion moved it to the Ablutions, PRACTICALLY speaking.

But it is a processional chant to be sung DURING Communion, and books with the Latin psalms to accompany the Antiphons have existed since the 1930s. Both the old and new Vulgate Communion Psalters can be found online.

The new one is on the Musica Sacra website: http://www.musicasacra.com/communio/

The Clementine Vulgate Communion Psalms are at:

Index of /Verse Book Images

Main Readme

Index Communionem A-O

Index Communionem P-V

In general, the fullest possible version of the LITURGICAL texts (either Chant or classical sacred polyphony) should be sung BEFORE one considers ADDING anything to the music-list.

Historically, most motets were settings of the antiphons on Magnificat at Vespers, and were sung when the antiphon was repeated. That's where Anglican Evensong got its "Anthem after the Third Collect" ... for the most part, there was no provision for adding music to the Mass, except possibly at communion-time, but by Mozart's time, the musical settings of Agnus Dei had become so long that they lasted right through Communion AND the Absolutions.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost

For July 27, 2008 which is the 11th Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Come, Holy Ghost, Creator Blest
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Deus in loco sancto suo
  4. Kyrie VIII (De Angelis)
  5. Gloria VIII
  6. Gradual: In Deo speravit
  7. Alleluia: Exsultate Deo
  8. Credo IV
  9. Offertory: Exaltabo te
  10. Offertory hymn: Concordi Laetitia
  11. Sanctus VIII
  12. Agnus Dei VIII
  13. Communion hymn: Panis Angelicus (G.P. da Palestrina)
  14. Communion: Honora Dominum
  15. Recession: Jesus, My Lord, My God, My All
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Tenth Sunday after Pentecost

For July 20, 2008 which is the 10th Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Glory Be To Jesus
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Dum clamarem
  4. Kyrie XI
  5. Gloria XI
  6. Gradual: Custodi me, Domine
  7. Alleluia: Te decet hymnus
  8. Credo I
  9. Offertory: Ad te, Domine, levavi
  10. Offertory hymn: O Sanctissima
  11. Sanctus XI
  12. Agnus Dei XI
  13. Communion hymn: Jesu, rex admirabilis (G.P. da Palestrina)
  14. Communion: Acceptabis
  15. Recession: Holy God, We Praise Thy Name
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Anniversary of Summorum Pontificum

Just a short musing on this historic day, one year ago when the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI issued the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum, liberating the Traditional Latin Mass.

Reading reports about the application of this motu proprio elsewhere, especially in certain parts of Europe, North America, Australia, and the Philippines, we have much to thank God. However, much remains to be done especially in regions where the resistance and disobedience of bishops and their respective episcopal conferences have hampered the possible growth of the TLM. Under this list would include the bishops of Malaysia, on their recent ad limina visit to the Apostolic See, who told the Pope that they have no time to teach Latin in the seminaries.

Much remains to be done and prayed for. And we certainly hope the Pope will not just lead by example (by celebrating a Solemn Papal Mass in St. Peter's, perhaps?), but also crack the whip against opposing bishops.

Carnival or Concert?


Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Ninth Sunday after Pentecost

UPDATE: The Mass on July 13, 2008 will be a Low Mass, thus there will be no singing. We will be singing for Sung Mass on July 27, 2008 instead.
----------------------------------------
For July 13, 2008 which is the 9th Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: Glory Be To Jesus
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Ecce Deus adiuvat me
  4. Kyrie XI
  5. Gloria XI
  6. Gradual: Domine, Dominus noster
  7. Alleluia: Eripe me
  8. Credo I
  9. Offertory: Iustitiae Domini
  10. Offertory hymn: O Sanctissima
  11. Sanctus XI
  12. Agnus Dei XI
  13. Communion hymn: Jesu, rex admirabilis (G.P. da Palestrina)
  14. Communion: Qui manducat
  15. Recession: Holy God, We Praise Thy Name
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Sixth Sunday after Pentecost

For June 22, 2008 which is the 6th Sunday after Pentecost, we are going to sing:
  1. Procession: O God Almighty Father
  2. Asperges me
  3. Introit: Dominus fortitudo plebis suae
  4. Kyrie XI
  5. Gloria XI
  6. Gradual: Convertere, Domine
  7. Alleluia: In te, Domine, speravi
  8. Credo I
  9. Offertory: Perfice gressus meos
  10. Offertory hymn: Ave Maria (J. Arcadelt)
  11. Sanctus XI
  12. Agnus Dei XI
  13. Communion hymn: Panis angelicus
  14. Communion: Circuibo
  15. Recession: To Jesus Christ, Our Sov'reign King
Click on the links to hear samples where available.

Friday, June 06, 2008

A sad day

Below is an article from Radio Vaticana regarding the recent ad limina visit of the bishops/archbishops of Malaysia to the Holy Father. Such is the sad state of affairs in the current hierarchy here in Malaysia. Oremus.

Pope learns of diversity of Malaysian Church

(02 June 08 - RV) Bishops from the South East Asian Nation of Malaysia begun their Ad Limina pilgrimage to Rome Monday.

There are around 800,000 Catholics in Malaysia - approximately 3% of the total population. The country is divided into nine dioceses including three archdioceses, Kuala Lumpur, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu. We spoke to the Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur MURPHY PAKIAM about his meeting with the Holy Father:


"The Church in Malaysia is diverse, it has four races, four languages four cultures. The Holy Father was happy to hear that we are forming them into a community of God's people and bringing them to well beyond their racial, linguistic, cultural barriers to form one community of God's people. Then he was surprised and happy to know that our priests have to speak at least three languages to preach the World of God to the people. He understands very well when I said that we have no time to teach them Latin and that this great move that is in Europe to bring Latin back does not work for people in the small young Church in Malaysia. He was surprised to hear of missionaries coming as far as Malaysia in the attempts to bring the Tridentine rite here. He was happy to learn also that we are moving a lot with inter-religious dialogue, more than dialogue of coming together of religious leaders because we are Hindus, Sheiks, Buddhists Muslims and so forth and he was happy that I had gone for a trip to China and that there was more than just talk of building relationships of friendships among the different religious leaders, because it is a good way of proceeding to put into action the Churches teaching in Nostra Aetate".
------------------------
Comment from the source who sent this: "The transformation of the Catholic Church in Malaysia into some sort of Malaysian Catholic Church. How insular. Aiya, make friends with everyone else but alienate other Catholics. Pls la... too many languages? Unite them all with Latin la... Sometimes I wonder what they are thinking and what the nuncio is thinking, creating an insular, under-trained priesthood. When the Pope speaks, they always think 'Hey, this is all and good, but it does not apply here.'. What rubbish. If the Catholic Church chooses to open a branch, I'll join. The Malaysian Catholic Church, like the Chinese Catholic Church (Communist) can go to hell."

On another note, have a look at the video below which was highlighted by Fr. Tim Finnigan with the title "Multicultural Youth Mass at Lourdes" by......surprise, surprise....the SSPX.

Read Fr. Finnigan's account about his experience here. I wonder, if the young French children at Lourdes have no problems with Latin, why does our archbishop here thinks that Asian children, youth and adults would have problems with it?