Choristers' Challenge

Sing like a Catholic. Sing the Mass.

Category: Sing the Mass (page 1 of 4)

The Exultet for Dummies

Learn to chant this fantastic song with confidence by identifying several recurring melodic motives.  Learn one motif at a time, and identify every time it occurs throughout the chant. You will soon appreciate how this long ornate melody is really not that complicated. Once you are familiar with the following simple phrases, you will then be able to sing the Exultet with poise and precision.

JESUS SANG

Mark 14:26

5 Ways to Help People Pray Better than Ever

JESUS SANG

Mark 14:26

  1. Singing is one of the primary ways that the assembly of the faithful participates actively in the Liturgy. The musical formation of the assembly must be a continuing concern in order to foster full, conscious, and active participation.
  2. Music should be considered a normal and ordinary part of the Church’s liturgical life. Singing by the gathered assembly is important at all celebrations. Among the parts to be sung, preference should be given “especially to those to be sung by the priest or the deacon or the lector, with the people responding, or by the priest and people together.” The dialogues of the Liturgy are fundamental because they “are not simply outward signs of communal celebration but foster and bring about communion between priest and people.”
  3. The importance of the priest’s participation in the Liturgy, especially by singing, cannot be overemphasized. The priest sings the presidential prayers and dialogues of the Liturgy according to his capabilities, and he encourages sung participation in the Liturgy by his own example, joining in the congregational song.
  4. In order to promote the corporate voice of the assembly when it sings, the priest’s own voice should not be heard above the congregation, nor should he sing the congregational response of the dialogues. While the assembly sings, the priest should step back from a microphone, or, if he is using a wireless microphone, he should turn it off.
  5. Programs of diaconal formation should include major and compulsory courses in the chant and song of the Liturgy.

Taken from “Sing to the Lord: Music in Divine Worship” USCCB, 2008

Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary, Denton, NE

The New Liturgical Evangelization

Are you a Pastor who is looking for ideas on how to revitalize your worship?

Try this:

1) Teach the congregation that the Mass is meant to be sung

Read Musicam Sacram  and Sing to the Lord for teaching ideas

2) Begin to chant the simple dialogues and prayers at every Mass (the parts in black below: #1)

3) Never stop chanting these easy parts (#1). Be consistent so that this becomes normal.

 

SEEKing the Future

SEEK is the annual FOCUS leadership conference. Young adults from across the country attend to learn how to transform the world in Christ. Look, listen and watch! What a great witness to youth and worship.

 

SING the Mass Propers

What are the Mass Propers?

In general, the Mass consists of the Propers (chants/texts for a specific Mass) and the Ordinary (the parts of the Mass which remain the same every time Mass is celebrated).  The propers consist of Psalms intended to be sung during the Entrance, Offertory and Communion processions at every Mass. Following the Second Vatican Council, musical settings of the Propers and the Ordinary were compiled in a new edition of the Graduale Romanum. Although widely neglected, the Propers remain an inspiring means by which to sing the Mass, and to immerse ourselves in Sacred Scripture.  Adam Bartlett‘s Simple English Propers provides a way for musicians to sing the Proper Chants in a simple English version. Since his setting matches the mode of the original Latin chant found in the Graduale Romanum,  musicians can seamlessly sing both consecutively. In this way, English speaking congregations understand the text AND the Church’s important evangelical tool of Gregorian Chant draws us into true worship.

Here is an example from the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time: Communion.

 

The sheet music for the two propers: Graduale Romanum and Simple English Propers

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The Harvest is Abundant: School Mass Musicians

The Catholic School year begins with song as our student musicians lift their voices and hearts in praise to God at School Mass. The youth exude excitement, joy, and enthusiasm. They hunger for God. They are searching, and they need adult role models to show them who Jesus is. Jesus says, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few, so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.”  (Matthew 9:37-38)

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Do adults know how to show Jesus to youth?

We see discouraging signs all around us, such as decreased Mass attendance, and legislation attacking the principles of our faith.  Christianity appears to be losing, not winning, hearts. Many Catholic adults, lacking solid catechesis themselves, don’t know how to share the Christian faith with their children and others. Pope Benedict XVI encourages us to persevere in forming youth amidst the challenges of our secular world.

There has been a collapse even of simple religious information. This naturally forces us to ask: What is our catechesis doing? What is our school system doing at a time when religious instruction is widespread? I think that it was an error not to pass on more content. Our religion instructors rightly repudiated the idea that religious instruction is only information, and they rightly said that it is something else, that it is more, that the point is to learn life itself, that more has to be conveyed. But that led to the attempt to make people like this style of life, while information and content were neglected. Here, I think, we ought really to be ready for a change, to say that if in this secular world we have religious instruction at all in the schools, we have to assume that we will not be able to convert many in schools to the faith. But the students should find out what Christianity is; they should receive good information in a sympathetic way so that they are stimulated to ask: Is this perhaps something for me?

– Pope Benedict XVI, Salt of the Earth p 125-126

Are you ready for a change?

Are you ready to share the treasure you have found in Jesus Christ?

May God bless our student musicians.

May God bless all those who inspire youth to fall in love with Jesus.

Catholic Men’s Chorale

JOIN US!

ONE Rehearsal – 7:00 pm, Tuesday, October 18 at Saint Mary’s Church

ONE Mass – Sing for the 9:30 am Mass on Sunday, October 23 at Saint Mary’s Church

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Is the Kyrie a part of the Penitential Rite?

This question arises whenever instructions state to omit the Penitential Rite. Oftentimes, priests, answering this question in the affirmative, will also omit the Kyrie. However, there is evidence to suggest that, in fact, the Kyrie is not a part of the penitential rite. Thus, priests omit the Kyrie when it should be included. Here are several citations that indicate that the Kyrie is separate from the penitential rite:

GIRM #46.

The rites that precede the Liturgy of the Word, namely, the Entrance, the Greeting, the Penitential Act, the Kyrie, the Gloria in excelsis (Glory to God in the highest) and Collect, have the character of a beginning, an introduction, and a preparation.

GIRM #52.

After the Penitential Act, the Kyrie, eleison (Lord, have mercy), is always begun, unless it has already been part of the Penitential Act.

Ceremonial of Bishops #255, on Ash Wednesday:

The introductory rites of the Mass and, as circumstances suggest, also the Kyrie are omitted, and the bishop immediately says the opening prayer.

GIRM #125.

The Penitential Act follows. After this, the Kyrie is sung or said, in accordance with the rubrics (cf. no. 52).

Roman Missal, Third Edition, which says for Ash Wednesday (Stational) and Palm Sunday:

Omitting the Introductory Rites and, if appropriate, the Kyrie, he says the Collect of the Mass, and then continues the Mass in the usual way.

The Third Edition of the Roman Missal clarified that the Gloria should be sung at weddings. This creates another situation giving us clear instructions to omit the penitential rite and to sing the Gloria, but making no mention of the Kyrie. I had hoped that this issue would be clarified with the new edition of The Order of Celebrating Matrimony. However, the recently published Order of Celebrating Matrimony states:

The Penitential Act is omitted. The Gloria in excelsis is said according to the rubric of the Roman Missal…

An insert like this: “The Penitential Act and the Kyrie are omitted.” OR “The Kyrie and Gloria in excelsis are said…” would have clarified the issue.

The Bishop’s Committee on the Liturgy developed this analysis of the issue: bislitkyrie

The Extraordinary Form: what does it teach us?

As a reference, at a wedding in the Extraordinary Form (the Mass before Vatican II), the Kyrie follows the entrance chant .  In the extraordinary form, the rite of marriage takes place before the Mass is celebrated.  After the couple give their consent, exchange vows, and the rings are blessed and exchanged, the entrance chant begins. In this example, the Kyrie begins at 8:48.

The community at Musicasacra.com forum discuss this topic here.

In cases of ambiguity such as this, discuss the issue with the pastor and proceed according to his decision.

Beauty is one of the divine attributes of God

Here is an article in which Bishop Conley explores how beauty in music helps us to contemplate God.

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Side Altar at Saint Thomas Aquinas Church – Newman Center, Lincoln, NE

The Necessity of Music

Great article by Bishop Conley of Lincoln, Nebraska discussing the different roles music plays in our lives.

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