Monday, March 09, 2009

What to do for starters?

A priest just wrote me to send a Sunday Mass lineup inspired by this site. Everything seemed in place as a good start, but the biggest problem I saw in the program was the processional hymn. It is critically important that the problem of the processional hymn be addressed at the outset of the reform. It should be replaced by the propers of the Mass. It can be done by beginners, and it is worth spending extra time here. People's heads should not be buried in a hymnbook at the beginning of Mass. The beginning of Mass also requires that life that comes from plainchant, and using the propers underscore the relationship between music and the Mass itself.

I know that I've been over this 1000 times on this site but consider the possibilities for English propers, all free online. There are Fr. Kelly's, which are becoming my personal favorite. There are the Anglican Use propers, which are easiest. Closer to the Gregorian are those of the American Gradual. There are choral settings by Rice. There are these lovely settings from a Gradual done by Fr. Abrogast. Consider too Fr. Weber's outstanding work. Finally, all of these should be measured against the authentic Gregorian chants.

More recent articles:

For more articles, see the NLM archives: