Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Three Paths to Sacred Music

This is a beautiful article by Jeffrey Tucker (Editor of Sacred Music by CMAA) on how people fall in love with Gregorian chant music. You will love this article.

After I read his article above, I happen to meet a priest (at the Mass in Our Lady Center in Ellicott city) last week who was just like the one described in the article. So, the following is my own that I posted in CMAA forum.

Today, I met the same old priest you mentioned in your article. The one who sang chants alone at the altar and converted you, Jeffrey. This got to be the same priest. His pitch and melody got off here and there. But there was something so holy and beautiful... made me cry. I think his singing was so sincere and honest, nothing to pretend and overdo, in front of God, I was so moved. He wasn't singing for himself nor for the others in the pew. He was singing only to glorify Him and express his joy and love for Him. If our church choirs can sing like that sincerely, I think we can convert many people, including catholics. Also if the congregation sings like that, isn't that the true 'active participation ?" Chant teaches humility, Christ's humility, to musicians and the catholics. Without that humility, we cannot truly love God and others. If we are just to be nice to others, maybe Christ didn't have to come and die for us. (By the way, our pirest said that ' nice' means 'know nothing') Chant is beautiful for many reasons. I think one of them is it's because it's humble as Christ is. I thought I converted to catholicism 20 years ago. I'm becoming a true catholic since I started to sing chants last year.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Regina Caeli Schola Cantorum, Dec. calendar

Mass in Dec.

At OLPH (practice on Mondays at 7:30)
Dec. Saturday Mass (8:15AM) (Warm - up starts at 7:40)
Dec.6, 20

Kyrie XI
Sanctus XVIII
Mysterium Fidei and Amen
Agnus Dei XVIII
Veni, veni Emmanuel (communion)
Alma Redemptoris Mater

At St. Martin's (Little Sisters of the Poor)
Dec. 14, Sunday, 10:30 (warm-up at 10AM)
(notice the change of the date)

O Come ,O Come Emmanuel (#35)
Kyrie XVI
Ave Maria (offertory-schola)
Sanctus XVIII
Mysterium Fidei and Amen
Agnus Dei XVIII
Veni, veni Emmanuel (communion)
People, Look East (#46)

At Resurrection Church (practice on Tuesdays at 7:30 PM)

Dec 8 (Immaculate Conception)
Mass at 7:30 PM (warm-up at 7 PM)

Alma Remptoris Mater (prelude)
Kyrie XI
Ave Maris stella
Sanctus VIII
Agnus Dei IV
Ave Maria(communion)

Dec. Satruday Mass (9AM) (Warm-up starts at 8:30)

Dec 13,

Kyrie XI
Sanctus VIII
Mysterium Fidei and Amen
Agnus Dei IV
Veni, veni Emmanuel (communion)
Alma Redemptoris Mater

Dec 27

Kyrie XI
Sanctus VIII
Mysterium Fidei and Amen
Agnus Dei IV
Puer natus in Bethlehem (communion)
Alma Redemptoris Mater

Children's schola (practice on Mondays at 1:30 at OLPH)
First Friday Mass
At OLPH 8:15 AM (warm up starts at 7:45 AM)

Kyrie XVI
Ave Maria(offertory)
Sanctus XVIII
Mysterium Fidei and Amen
Veni, veni Emmanuel (communion)
Agnus Dei XVIII

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Replacing 'God and Lord' with 'I' in modern hymns

This is from CMAA forum (CMAA is cited by Vatican recently as a valuable site on Sacred music. Go to its website, for the citation)

CommentAuthorfrogman noel jones

It also may boil down to one's own perception of where one stands in relation to God. Is it proper for us to think:

Jesus, my Lord, my God, my All
I am the bread of life.

Look at the capitals. In our prayer, in our study of the scripture, where are we in relation to God? And someone more knowledgeable than I needs to post and tell me what our singing of texts that place us not only on a level with God, but saying the words of God, does to our thinking and understanding.
We are charged in the article from Zenit above to understand the importance of scripture.
""The Word was made flesh and dwelt amongst us" this is the foundation of our faith. However, the same Word who took flesh in Mary's womb, who died, rose and ascended, is the same one who said, "This is my body … this is my blood," and is thus present body, soul and divinity under the species of bread and wine.""
The person who says the words "This is my Body ... this is my Blood" at Holy Mass has been chosen by God to say those words and we, as Catholics are not allowed to say those words during the Mass with him. Some may think this is not important. Some may think they have every right to say these words. Some think that they as women may say these words and validly consecrate bread and wine.
Where is the line drawn?
FROM THE GEORGIA OUTDOOR NEWS: concerning the name of God.
Bishop Arthur Serratelli, chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Divine Worship, in a note informing prelates of the Vatican directive, said the indications "do not force any changes to official liturgical texts," but might cause "some impact on the use of particular pieces of liturgical music in our country as well as in the composition of variable texts such as the general intercessions for the celebration of the Mass and the other sacraments."
"The Vatican goes on to note that this practice had "important implications" for New Testament Christology.
"When in fact, St. Paul, with regard to the crucifixion, writes that 'God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name which is above every name" (Phil 2:9), he does not mean any other name than 'Lord,' for he continues by saying, 'and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord' (Phil 2:11; cf. Isaiah 42:8: 'I am the Lord; that is my name')," the Vatican note explained.
"The attribution of this title to the risen Christ corresponds exactly to the proclamation of his divinity," it continued. "The title in fact becomes interchangeable between the God of Israel and the Messiah of the Christian faith, even though it is not in fact one of the titles used for the Messiah of Israel."
"Avoiding pronouncing the tetragrammaton of the name of God on the part of the Church has therefore its own grounds," the Vatican concluded. "Apart from a motive of a purely philogical order, there is also that of remaining faithful to the Church's tradition, from the beginning, that the sacred tetragrammaton was never pronounced in the Christian context, nor translated into any of the languages into which the Bible was translated.""
Here Rome says it is not right to pronounce this name and admits that this is only a problem in songs and what is really being said here is this?
You have taken it upon yourselves to pronounce the name of God, which is forbidden, and now it must stop.
How soon will Rome tell us to purge more than just this....and return to purity of scripture.
Perhaps the language currently being used by the Church to articulate the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist is lacking. When traditional hymns like Panis angelicus and Ave verum corpus are supplanted by "Christ has no body now but ours" and "You and I are the bread of life", is it any wonder that Catholics don't see the Eucharist as Jesus Christ present under the forms of bread and wine? Good catechesis on the Real Presence requires sensitive language, sacred language. If we use secular terminology like "plate" instead of "paten" and "cup" instead of "chalice", eventually we'll use the word "picnic" instead of "banquet".
See for the rest of this interesting commentary.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

First Saturday Mass at the church of Resurrection with Regina Caeli Schola

Our schola and the faithful had a wonderful experience with the beautiful traditional music at the morning Mass last Saturday. It was spiritually lifting and so prayerful as we are connected with the Church, and all the saints and holy men and women thoughout the centuries through the Church's beautiful treasure.
As we know, the music at the Mass is to focus on our Lord present at the Eucharist, which is the core of our faith. Because of this, the true presence of Jesus in our church, I converted to a catholic from a protestant. When you know that Jesus is truly with us, what a difference it makes. Our Lord humbled Himself to come to us through Mary and continues to humble Himself to be with us. His teaching and His command, God is Love and love one another, become more real and concrete to humans through this humble presence. Only when we learn this humility, our love for God and each other can be real, as His love for us is real. Gregorian chant is the most humble, yet beautiful music as it teaches and preaches this humble and beautiful love as it serves the Liturgy. We are so blessed to be called for this ministry.
I'm so gratetful for Father Mike who supports us and gave an excellent introcuction to the congregation about the chant before and after the Mass. We will be keep singing the Church's tradition and help the faithful to keep our cathoilic faith and catholic identity.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Must Watch Video Clip

Chants of a lifetime

music that's humble,
music that truly serves the Liturgy,
music that's closest to Christ Time,
music that's spiritual,
music that's beautiful,
music that's Heavenly!