Chanting the Reading at Mass
  • Peter_S_B
    Posts: 6
    Hi does anyone have or know where to get at chant notated Lectionary for the Ordinary form of the Mass. My parish is looking to start chanting the readings at Solemn Masses but I have had no luck in tracking one down. I know that the Roman Missal has the proper formula but we really don’t have the resources to write out each individual reading according to the Missal’s formula. Does anyone know where I can get them already written out in chant notation?
  • I know CanticaNOVA Publications produces a book of sung Gospels, but I am unaware of a full lectionary.
  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,114
    Your best bet is learning to chant from unpointed text, or at least learning a tool like Gregorio.
  • kenstb
    Posts: 362
    Peter!! Welcome to the forum. God has blessed you if your parish is looking into chanted readings. I am familiar with the Gospels like Andrew says above. I haven't come across the full lectionary either, but if it can be found, the members of this forum will help you to locate them.
  • Ben, where can he find a guide to learning to chant from unpointed text?
  • fcbfcb
    Posts: 273
    On the few occasions when I chant the Gospel (Xmas and Easter), I just make light pencil marks in the Book of Gospels to indicate the changes in tone. I've tried singing from the Cantica Nova book, but while I found it helpful for practice, in the actual liturgy I prefer not to have the notes in front of me.
  • Ally
    Posts: 223
    The guide to chanting the unpointed text is in the Roman Missal itself, Appendix 1 (Various Chants for the Order of Mass), like Peter mentions. I think the book "Chants of the Roman Missal" (study edition) may be more helpful, but I don't have it in front of me to see what more it has for the tones for the readings, or if it basically repeats the missal.
    Thanked by 1BruceL
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,331
    Here's a link to Professor Deacon Ed Schaefer's book of notated Gospels:

    Ed formerly published the book through his own publishing firm Priory Press, but the volume is now a CMAA book.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,331
    For what it's worth: I prepared the sung English readings for the Colloquium Masses, and took the tones from the 1961 Graduale Romanum, but made some adaptations for English word accents and vowel lengths, with some advice from Bruce Ford.

    As a result, I made use of some variants listed in the old tone-instructions which aren't mentioned in the new Roman Missal. As far as I know, the music in the new Roman Missal is not mandatory, so we are free to use older sources.

  • G
    Posts: 1,389
    I believe Fr Keyes mentioned a website during Fr Pasley's class.

    (Save the Liturgy, Save the World)
  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,114
    Here is a doc containing the content from ICEL (ie, the back of the missal) regarding singing the readings.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,331
    Also note that Appendix I also gives us a nice option for epistle readings:
    "A reading from the letter of the blessed apostle Paul to the Whoevers"
    Thanked by 2Ben Yanke CHGiffen
  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,114
    I was happy to see that used.
  • Ignoto
    Posts: 126
    Liturgical Press also has a book of Sung Gospels for Major Solemnities in Multiple Voices.

    Since it has "settings written for two- or three-part voices," that would only be for concelebrated Masses or Masses with a deacon present, correct? (Not all parishes have multiple priests and deacons.)

  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,114
    No, it is still only proclaimed by one member of the clergy, so this is illicit. It's bizarre and frustrating to see these things published by Catholic publishers, and worse, by clergy who should know better.

    In any recent past, the traditional practice of the roman rite has never envisioned the proclamation of the gospel by multiple clergy (except in the very specific case of the passion, and even then, it's not in harmony, it's three each singing different parts, not three at the same time). A single voice has been the mode for proclamation.

    GIRM no. 42. Attention must therefore be paid to what is determined by this General Instruction and by the traditional practice of the Roman Rite ... rather than private inclination or arbitrary choice.

    Fr. Ruff's choice to encourage this seems to be exactly what the GIRM describes: his private inclination and arbitrary choice.
    Thanked by 2Ignoto tomjaw
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,119
    Ben, the "traditional practice of the Roman Rite" surely includes many polyphonic Passions, so wouldn't there a bit of arbitrariness in adding the phrase "recent past" even if there weren't any current traditions?
  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,114
    Polyphonic passions? I'm not familiar with the practice. Does it invole the whole text being sung by the choir instead of the priest? just the turba part? Are they devotional pieces or meant to replace the gosepl reading on palm sunday and good friday at thr liturgy?

    In any case, it's still just the passion that is the exception.
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,383
    Sometime in the 1980s, I sang the Chronista in the Dominican setting of the St. John Passion on Good Friday, for which the Turba was chanted in 3-part organum.
    Thanked by 1Gavin
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Oh Ben, the first of my three German pastors over the last 23 years insisted upon TWO full on Good Fridays each year so he could soak up the Victoria St John's, aka Sihnjins*. (I think we used the Concordia, hehe, option four!)
    You gotta get widda program!
    *That's for my impeccable bunkmate.
  • rollingrj
    Posts: 270
    CorpusChristiWatershed does have a couple of 'blog posts on this subject. (I had them bookmarked, but then accidentally deleted that folder.)
  • tomjaw
    Posts: 1,864
    The four Passion narratives, formerly sung on Palm Sunday (Matt.), Tuesday (Mark) and Wednesday (Luke) of Holy Week, and Good Friday (John) Can be sung by 3 Clerics according to the music found in,
    Cantus Passionis (1952): Palm Sunday Gospels:,,

    Also found in other editions.

    These all have Polyphonic settings of the Turba parts as found here:

    These are part of the "traditional practice of the Roman Rite" and we have sung these on Palm Sunday / Good Friday in the EF.

    Of course there are other Passions found in the link below, that are purely devotional pieces Not for use during the Liturgy

    N.B. The list on cpdl includes both types!
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,119
    Obrecht's sets the entire Gospel. The settings we've sung on Good Fridays and Palm Sundays over the last 7 years are of the turbae: Victoria, Schütz, Lassus. The Iberian composers tend to deploy the full resources of polyphony for the Peter's tears, Guerrero expanding the choir suddenly to 6 parts. There are many encyclopedic surveys: New Grove, Wikipedia, Catholic Encyclopedia are a few.
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen