Sung mass, solemn mass and read mass in Musicam Sacram - I'm confused.
  • From Musicam Sacram:

    28. The distinction between solemn, sung and read Mass, sanctioned by the Instruction of 1958 (n. 3), is retained, according to the traditional liturgical laws at present in force. However, for the sung Mass (Missa cantata), different degrees of participation are put forward here for reasons of pastoral usefulness, so that it may become easier to make the celebration of Mass more beautiful by singing, according to the capabilities of each congregation.

    These degrees are so arranged that the first may be used even by itself, but the second and third, wholly or partially, may never be used without the first. In this way the faithful will be continually led towards an ever greater participation in the singing.

    29. The following belong to the first degree:

    (a) In the entrance rites: the greeting of the priest together with the reply of the people; the prayer.

    (b) In the Liturgy of the Word: the acclamations at the Gospel.

    (c) In the Eucharistic Liturgy: the prayer over the offerings; the preface with its dialogue and the Sanctus; the final doxology of the Canon, the Lord's prayer with its introduction and embolism; the Pax Domini; the prayer after the Communion; the formulas of dismissal.

    ....

    36. There is no reason why some of the Proper or Ordinary should not be sung in said Masses. Moreover, some other song can also, on occasions, be sung at the beginning, at the Offertory, at the Communion and at the end of Mass. It is not sufficient, however, that these songs be merely "Eucharistic"—they must be in keeping with the parts of the Mass, with the feast, or with the liturgical season.



    THe issue I have is this - we have a priest who does not sing at all. (Very reverent and a good man, I don't know if he can't or won't for some reason and it is not material to the issue. Just trust me, encouraging him to sing is not a possible way forward for us here).

    So if I am reading this correctly-
    A sung Mass is a Mass where the priest sings his parts, (the first degree elements), and the congregation and choir may sing all or some of the second and third degree elements.

    A said mass is a mass where the priest says all his parts (the first degree elements), but where (as in no 36) the congregation and choir can sing some (or even all?) of the proper and ordinary (otherwise described as the second and third degree elements).

    So in practice, a sung mass, and a said mass may look identical, except for the singing of the priest.

    but this is further complicated by this:

    7. Between the solemn, fuller form of liturgical celebration, in which everything that demands singing is in fact sung, and the simplest form, in which singing is not used, there can be various degrees according to the greater or lesser place allotted to singing. However, in selecting the parts which are to be sung, one should start with those that are by their nature of greater importance, and especially those which are to be sung by the priest or by the ministers, with the people replying, or those which are to be sung by the priest and people together. The other parts may be gradually added according as they are proper to the people alone or to the choir alone.

    8. Whenever, for a liturgical service which is to be celebrated in sung form, one can make a choice between various people, it is desirable that those who are known to be more proficient in singing be given preference; this is especially the case in more solemn liturgical celebrations and in those which either require more difficult singing, or are transmitted by radio or television.[6]

    If, however, a choice of this kind cannot be made, and the priest or minister does not possess a voice suitable for the proper execution of the singing, he can render without singing one or more of the more difficult parts which concern him, reciting them in a loud and distinct voice. However, this must not be done merely for the convenience of the priest or minister.


    So a solemn Mass is one which is a sung Mass, where everything is sung, except when the priest can't sing it in whih case he can say it, and it is still a solemn Mass.

    So we are left with:
    Solemn Mass = sung mass: Priest must sing first degree and as much of second and third degree sung as possible.
    Unless the priest can't, in which case his parts can be said.
    This makes it look identical to the said Mass.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,848
    The above is a set of recommendations on how to work your way up to the solemn Mass. If the priest does not sing, you won't get all the way there, so don't call it a solemn Mass.
    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • fcbfcb
    Posts: 270
    Isn't what makes it a Solemn Mass the participation of deacon and subdeacon (along with other ceremonial differences)?
    Thanked by 2bonniebede Gavin
  • Musicam Sacram is a dead letter, juridically speaking. It was issued when the Mass in use worldwide was still the TLM, and represented an effort to loosen up some of the tight restrictions on the use of music -- under the old Mass, many people were doomed to perpetual silent low Masses (perhaps with some hymns) because they had priests who didn't like to sing, or at least who didn't have the resources to put on the full splendor of a Missa Cantata from end to end.

    As it happened, though, three short years later the new Mass was issued. The legalistic framework of Musicam Sacram ("You can't sing this, unless you also sing that") was not adopted, and it therefore ceased to have juridical force. However, we can and should look to MS for enlightenment of certain principles relating to music in the liturgy -- it is, after all, a product of the same Consilium that would go on to develop the Missal of Paul VI. But it would probably be perverse to try to interpret a document, intended in its day to increase freedom, in such a way as to limit freedom today.

    Personally, I think MS's famous three-part framework is of only limited value, since the Mass it was talking about was very different from what we have today. "The Alleluia before the Gospel" is relegated to the third degree, among the least important (or, rather, least singable) items, but that is because, at the time, it was a full Gregorian Alleluia, out of the reach of many smaller choirs and with no opportunity for the congregation to participate. The Alleluia of the modern Mass, musically speaking, is a different animal altogether, and it would be bizarre to suggest today that a straightforward congregational Alleluia could or should not be sung unless, for instance, you were also singing the prayer of the faithful (2nd degree).

    I should point out that we need to read the document correctly. When it refers, for instance, to "the songs at the Entrance and Communion processions" (3rd degree), it means the Introit and Communio propers, not Gather Us In or Gift of Finest Wheat. The modern Responsorial Psalm, likewise, it not was is embraced by "the songs after the Lesson or Epistle" (also 3rd degree), but rather the Gradual or Tract.

    Overall, it looks to me like the three-part structure prioritizes singing things that are short, easy, involve the congregation, and/or are repeated from week to week. This means unchanging dialogue and the Pater Noster in the first degree; in the next, the Ordinary. At the very end come the things that are long, complicated, changeable, and non-participational: the Gregorian Propers and the singing of the readings. The three-part framework can thus be seen to fail as a guideline for the music of the modern Mass. In a day when the Alleluia is short, simple, unchanging, and participational, it makes no sense -- nor, just as importantly, was it ever the intention of the Consilium or Paul VI -- to rank it in the last degree.

    I hope this helps you think about Musicam Sacram.
  • dad29
    Posts: 1,732
    Overall, it looks to me like the three-part structure prioritizes singing things that are short, easy, involve the congregation, and/or are repeated from week to week. This means unchanging dialogue and the Pater Noster in the first degree; in the next, the Ordinary. At the very end come the things that are long, complicated, changeable, and non-participational: the Gregorian Propers and the singing of the readings. The three-part framework can thus be seen to fail as a guideline for the music of the modern Mass.


    No.

    In fact, it succeeds by enabling the congregation (and celebrant) to sing what THEY can--including the Ordinary parts--while requiring a choir/schola which can sing the Proper parts.

    Exactly what the 2VatCouncil prescribed.
    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • jczarn
    Posts: 65
    Musicam Sacram is a dead letter, juridically speaking.


    Can you elaborate on this? If this is true, then what documents are officially in force for the celebration of the EF Mass? Are there really any official rubrics to be found?

    I cantor for our Sunday EF Mass, but I basically rely on:
    1) What my priest says, and
    2) What is in "Psallite Sapienter," which as far as I understand, is just one man's commentary on what is to be done.

    As far as I know, we are doing everything "by the book," but it would be nice to know exactly where one could look to find the rules.
    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,437
    It's my understanding that De Musica Sacra (1958) is the latest liturgical document governing the music of the Extraordinary Form, and the rubrics in the 1962 Missale Romanum are the rubrics which must be followed in the celebration of the Extraordinary Form.

    Sacrosanctum Concilium (1963) authorized the reform of the liturgy, so the changes authorized by SC and the liturgical documents after Sacrosanctum Concilium, such as Musicam Sacram (1965), do not apply to the EF but to the Novus Ordo Missae, the Ordinary Form.
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,437
    P.S. B. Andrew Mills' book, Psallite Sapienter, is subtitled "A Musician's Guide to the 1962 Missal."

    The rubrics for the celebration of the Extraordinary Reform are contained in the 1962 Missal. That's why when you go the St. John Cantius' website and to the CMAA's own guidelines for music at the EF Low Mass which were written by Fr. Scott Haynes, it says "Guidelines for Liturgical Services according to the1962 Missale Romanum, Music for Low Mass, by Rev. Scott A. Haynes, S.J.C. Canons Regular of St. John Cantius, Chicago."

    I once asked my bishop a question about the EF, and he told me also that the source for the rubrics and music of the EF is in the 1962 Missale Romanum itself. That is the ultimate and most authoritative source for the celebration of the EF.
    Thanked by 2bonniebede jczarn
  • vogelkwvogelkw
    Posts: 45
    I agree with Julie. I find it odd when people claim that Musicam Sacram has nothing to do with our current liturgy. To make the claim that Musicam Sacram is only for the Old Mass since the current form did not yet exist, would be like saying Sacrosanctum Concilium only applies to the Old Mass because the new form did not yet exist. Rather both Sacrosanctum Concilium and Musicam Sacram present the Church's vision for the liturgy and its music that was to be applied to the formation and celebration of our current form of the Mass. It may be helpful to look at the timeline of documents:

    1958 De musica sacra et sacra liturgia
    1961 Graduale Romanum - music of the Extraordinary Form
    1962 Missale Romanum - text of the Extraordinary Form
    1963 Sacrosanctam Concilium
    1965 Interim Ordo Missae - transition toward the Ordinary Form already beginning
    1967 Musicam Sacram - Instruction on Music in the Liturgy
    1967 Graduale Simplex - simple chants to be applied to the music in the new form of the Mass
    1970 Missale Romanum (Novus Ordo)
    1971 Missale Romanum (Amended)
    1974 Graduale Romanum
    1975 Missale Romanum, 2nd Ed.
    2002 Missale Romanum, 3rd Ed.
    2008 Missale Romanum, 3rd Ed. (Amended) - our current Roman Missal

    The fact that later documents sometimes make reference to Musicam Sacram also seems to indicate that it should be understood as being applicable to the Ordinary Form.

    God bless,
    Fr. Vogel
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    There is no problem if absolutes are discussed under the presumption of personal preference. However one has to wonder if there's some sort of obligatory default to juridical absolutism when the presumption is based upon common or universal usage.
    I believe I first heard Mahrt elucidate about the "Paradigm" at DC Colloquium 07. IIRC, his "thesis" melded the heirarchies of MS so as to guide one's consideration of how to apply those to the OF. I could be wrong.
    This is why I don't find it particularly bothersome whenever someone makes a personal call to prefer worship in the EF, whether a Kocik, Kwasniewski, Koerber or Coll (see what I did there?) OTOH, I'm not sure how much benefit there is trying to treat liturgical documents as puzzle pieces that have to somehow fit together so all can be relieved and say "Eureka, this is how it's supposed to be for us all!" YMMV.
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,804
    Mommy, what's a sung Mass?
    Thanked by 2bonniebede CHGiffen
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,437
    Melo, I'm cognizant of the honor of being collected in the company of such distinguished colleagues. : )
  • vogelkwvogelkw
    Posts: 45
    Our approach should not be too legalistic - concerned only with what it is that the law requires me to do. Usually that approach leads us to do either the least required or makes us overly concerned with external perfection rather than leading the faithful into prayer. As Mark pointed out, the first degree refers mainly to the Order of Mass, the second degree to the Ordinary, and the third degree to the Proper. Following MS, in the Church's vision for a sung Mass (Sundays and Solemnities) the Order should be sung, and then elements of the Ordinary and Proper may also be added. The more solemn the Mass, the more elements are likely to be sung. Of course there is nothing legally wrong if the priest is unable to lead in singing the Order of Mass. For a read Mass (weekday) the amount of singing can vary, with elements being taken from any of the three degrees.

    A post I made on another thread seems applicable here. In it I explain why I sing the Order of Mass on Sundays. I don't do so because I think I would be breaking laws if I didn't, but because I have been given the ability and to sing those parts is the vision of the Church in leading the faithful to encounter Christ. The priest must take the responsibility of singing the liturgy seriously within his abilities:
    “The importance of the priest’s participation in the Liturgy, especially by singing, cannot be overemphasized. … ‘If, however. . . the priest or minister does not possess a voice suitable for the proper execution of the singing, he can render without singing one or more of the more difficult parts which concern him, reciting them in a loud and distinct voice. However, this must not be done merely for the convenience of the priest or minister.’ … Those priests who are capable should be trained in the practice of chanting the Gospel on more solemn occasions when a deacon may not be present. At the very least, all priests should be comfortable singing those parts of the Eucharistic Prayer that are assigned to them for which musical notation is provided in the Roman Missal. … If they are capable, deacons should be trained in the practice of chanting the Gospel on more solemn occasions.” (Sing to the Lord, USCCB, 19, 20, 21, 23, quoting Musicam Sacram 8)

    Ultimately, the purpose of sacred music is the glory of God and the sanctification of the faithful (SC 112). We don't want to do the least, but give God the best, the first fruits. As St. Augustine said, “Singing is for the one who loves.”

    God bless,
    Fr. Vogel
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,610
    Musicam Sacram is a wonderful document. When I taught the clergy-track at the CMAA Winter Chant Intensive a few weeks ago I used it as the guiding light to our studying of the Sung Mass. For those of you interested, the classes were broken up thusly:

    Day 1
    Class 1 - Looking at Musicam Sacram, important quotes, the degrees, etc.
    Class 2 - Reading Chant Notation, neumes and Missal notation
    Day 2
    Class 1 - Chants of the First Degree, singing technique and singing while following rubrics
    Class 2 - Chants of the Second Degree, praying while singing
    Class 3 - The Gregorian Modes
    Class 4 - The chants not mentioned by Musicam Sacram
    Day 3
    Class 1 - Chants of the Third Degree, the mentions of choirs in the liturgy documents
    Class 2 - The more complicated clerical chants
    Class 3 - The more complicated clerical chants (continued)
    Class 4 - The more complicated clerical chants (continued)
    Day 4
    Class 1 - Singing of the Liturgy of the Hours, Chants of the First Degree reviewed
    Thanked by 2bonniebede CHGiffen
  • Thanks all, some food for thought there. Perhaps I should have made it clear that I am working with the Novus Ordo, so adding solemnity by adding su deacons not going to happen!. Also I'm not in the Usa so Sing to the Lord not applicable either.
    I think it is not correct to say that MS is a dead letter simply because it predates some liturgical changes.
    The way we have received the Mass, by which I mean, the way we find the Mass commonly said in the local church around us, is not necessarily the way it should be done, according to the mind of the Church, but without an objective description, for example as found in MS, there is not place to start a proper critique from.

    Mathhew, that looks like a very worthwhile program, any chance you might have some notes or slides you would care to share?

    Thanks all who took the time to contribute.
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,437
    Father, I hope you know how inspiring it is to hear a priest chant the readings and the parts of the Mass. The example of the priest raising his voice to God galvanizes the people to imitate him and sing their parts in response.

    Also, the sung readings are so compelling. I am so fascinated by the different tones that the priest may use and how different grammatical elements are distinguished. For the EF Feast of the Holy Family this last Sunday, for example, the priest sang the Gospel where a number of questions are asked and each time he used the same little change-up to indicate each question. Even if you weren't reading along, you could tell there was a question from the way it was sung.
  • I think it is not correct to say that MS is a dead letter simply because it predates some liturgical changes.


    Juridically -- in respect of its legal force -- it is a dead letter not because it predates them, but rather because those subsequent changes fundamentally reordered and reestablished the entire subject matter and do not include, but rather go beyond, the transitional norms established in MS. (As to the TLM, Summorum Pontificum expressly makes post-'62 norms inapplicable.) The modern rubrics contained in the Missale and the Institutio Generalis allow for various parts of the Mass to be sung or not without reference to whether other parts are sung.

    MS still has much to teach us, just in a non-binding way. The point of my previous post is that we need to be careful to interpret the document within the context of its own time, so as to know exactly what it is that it is trying to teach us. In many cases this means that it cannot be taken at face value, but must be reinterpreted in light of the modern Mass. To go back to the example I used previously, MS is not trying to teach us that "you should not sing the Alleluia if you are not singing the Creed." Rather, the teaching to be gleaned is that simple, repeated, participational items should be sung before longer, variable, non-congregational items.
  • MS is a dead letter only in the sense that it was largely ignored. It dealt with the intended musical application of SC. Enter in opportunistic publishers, "alius cantus aptus", etc. One starts to wonder how MS (and SC to a large degree) seemed to be ignored and why? What went wrong? These are things to consider. We can't solve all the problems but it's also most unhealthy to sweep them under the rug. Its a pretense and we seek truth.

    People of good will who discover this wonderful document and seek to understand it are to be commended. Do what you can and see how the degrees make sense when tried, etc.

    It would make the disruption in liturgucal praxis much easier to accept if were truly a dead letter. As it remains an authoritative document, intended for the OF, the larger question of why the sung liturgical reforms have yet to be realized remains with us.
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,437
    Yes, indeed, Mary Ann! Couldn't agree with you more. It's a great mystery how all these excellent documents so quickly atrophy into "dead letters", practically speaking. It also makes you wonder why the mandates in Tra le sollecitudini, Divini cultus, Mediator Dei, and De musica sacra (which I believe was the culmination of the original preconciliar popes' and the Liturgical Movement's desires and aspirations) were largely ignored.

    If only more priests and bishops had listened to Popes Pius X, XI and XII . . .

    If only Pope Pius XII had promulgated De musica sacra, which was basically anaggiornamento of the liturgy sooner, say 5 to 10 years earlier than 1958, perhaps there would have never been a need for further, more radical and extremist aggiornamento a few short years later.
    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Again, I don't think yakking about "Wha' happened?" back in 67 here in MSF will mitigate our myriad and literally universal problems. "Wha' happened?" Dobszay had it right, "Bugnini" happened. We have a hybrid product, and by nearly all accounts one that was fabricated in a Rube Goldberg-like manner, end of story.
    I think the biggest issue you youngin's will have to overcome is the deep-rooted weeds that were sewn through "Music in Catholic Worship." Forget SttL, MCW with its insidious three "judgments" still prevails as long as no knowledgeable prelate with clout gets the attention of the USCCB says that the "pastoral" criterium is a red herring. That one word gives credence to any local yokel who thinks that singing "Abba Father" or "Song of the Body of Christ" is the heighth of pastoral effectiveness that edifies his/her conception of FCAP.
    Just an old geezer's crotchety opinion.
    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • Asking the questions matters, as frustrating and sad as the process may be. Your parishes may be thriving, but many of our churches are emptying, and it's not unavoidable nor is it an accident.

    A mess was made, and needs to be cleaned up. In justice and charity and truth, the problems slowly and kindly and firmly need to be examined and untangled, for the good of all. Young people and new sacred musicans want answers, and we should reach out and provide them.

    I say (and yes, I struggle! to say) avoid despair and keep singing.
    Thanked by 2francis bonniebede
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,437
    Dear Melo, please forgive me if I was belaboring a point above, but despite the fact that I've heard and read so much about the Bugnini Reform, there is still, obviously, much that I do not know, and I'm still deep in the process of trying to understand why Catholics have been robbed of so much.

    Why were those great liturgical treasures, the Graduale Romanum, 1962 Missale Romanum and Divinum Officium, newly minted, updated and promulgated, literally hot off the presses, snatched off the shelves and relegated to the ash heap of history?

    So much music and beauty trampled and forgotten, so many hopes and aspirations shattered, and, I believe, so many hearts broken for the sake of the Novus Ordo Missae.

    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 8,288
    wow... are we a confused bunch or what? i included.
    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,804
    "Why were those great liturgical treasures, the Graduale Romanum, 1962 Missale Romanum and Divinum Officium, newly minted, updated and promulgated, literally hot off the presses, snatched off the shelves and relegated to the ash heap of history?"

    fwiw, the reasons probably vary most by place. In the US, for example, there were regions where the musical heritage of the Church was more actively cultivated than others, and where the changes involved more felt loss than in other places (where they didn't feel as much of a loss of what they never really had). I think, for example, of the difference between the Midwest (where there were lots of Catholics from European countries that had kept that heritage more alive) versus, say, lots of New England where the relatively strong Irish preference for a quick-and-dirty Low Mass was long dominant. Then you also have to remember the powerful scrambling effect of post-World War II suburbanization, by which ethnic Catholic urban ghettoes scrambled up in dozens of brand new parishes on former farmland. (Yes, I am looking at you, Nassau and Suffolk Counties, as exemplars of this.) And those new parishes were more or less required to prioritize school-building over church-building until the mid-1960s, so Mass tended to be celebrated in a culture of minimalism. I would also note there were Catholic musicians who took a petulant attitude about the changes and left with their toys, as it were, and musicians who took them as an opportunity to build rather than withdraw (Theodore Marier is a classic example of this latter type).


    Thanked by 2JulieColl bonniebede
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,437
    Thanks so much for the historical and cultural overview, Liam. (Re: the suburbanization of Long Island, I think you'll be happy to know that at Farmingdale State College there is a thriving sustainable agriculture program centred around their state-of-the-art organic garden, arboretum and green houses. Great things are happening there.)

    Perhaps the hopeful spot is that those places where the Catholic musical heritage was strongest before the Council may be the places where it will be revived the soonest someday. I know I'm always pointing to the French traditional Catholics for inspiration, but you do see that there must have been something in their preconciliar culture which kept them connected to traditional Catholic liturgical customs. They must have had somehow a stronger attachment or receptiveness to the Church's liturgy that has made it easier for them to revive the Catholic liturgical heritage.

    They reacted very strongly in favor of preserving the traditional Latin Mass, so there must have been something in their preconciliar experience that kept them very attached to the traditional liturgy, and I think it must have been something other than the consistent pattern of silent Low Masses that you describe as largely taking place on Long Island and the Northeastern before Vatican II.

    Why did they not only react so strongly to preserve the traditional liturgy, but also preserve it and revive it in its sung form? One does not have to be a Lefebrvist extremist partisan to admire how Archbishop Lefebrve's priests have revived and brought back to life traditional Catholic European liturgical expressions and customs as illustrated in this recent procession at Lourdes last October:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-dXpWAhPf4

    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    There's a lot to concur with KLS's recollections. But one has to remember that Baltimore, also on the Eastern Seaboard, was a nexus and hotbed of revolutionary change. And a lot of those guys drifted west, some hooking up with Scholtes or FranciscanPublications in LA, which IIRC was ground zero for FEL. In any case, even with the advent of the SLJ/Dameans from the midwest, they really didn't corner the market until the west coast bought in. Oakland was huge in the "experimental" corner, tho' SF wasn't. I can imagine that Mahrt would recall this as well. And the SLJ's all did post-grad work at GTU Berkeley in the late 70's during the Earthen Vessels/In Praise/Wood Hath Hope era. So, I say blame California, Mary Ann Carr Wilson in particular! ;-) Oh, I almost forgot, Kathy Pluth too, as she's from San Diego as well! ;-)
    Thanked by 1bonniebede
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,804
    Julie

    The Aggie School is not what it was. I remember each Thanksgiving going to visit the farm animals and then taking a hike in the wooded hills between the school and Bethpage park. Back in the day, it was famous for the Farmingdale grass seed mixture; IIRC, it also had a mortuary science department.

    Then again, I remember Arcadian Gardens City of Glass and Sterns Pickles.

    Somewhere, I should be screaming "And get off my lawn!".

    Thanked by 2bonniebede JulieColl
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,804
    Repeating myself from earlier threads, I have the indelible memory of the advent of the folk group at my parish circa 1970. Until that time, liturgical music was a 4 hymn sandwich, played on an electronic organ with chord buttons often used. (One of the priests often led the congregation in singing with his hands indicating relative pitches and rhythms.) The folk group sounded crisp and almost professional by comparison. At least until it faded in a few years. And it was a few more years before I was able to find something better elsewhere.
  • The problem with the old liturgy was that if any one item could not be sung, then the whole mass could not be sung.

    This wasn't a problem with the liturgy itself, but more a problem in that the many parish churches could not obtain the human resources to sing all the chants. Low Mass with the now familiar 4-hymn sandwich was a more practical solution for the average parish church than trying to raise up a Gregorian Schola Cantorum.

    Some attempts had been previously made to simplify the situation with the "Missa Primitiva", later the "Missa Simplex I" and now the "Missal Tone Chants." Combined with singing psalm-tone propers was a workable but less than ideal solution.

    I don't think that any of the council fathers could have foreseen the rise of the popular folk-type music which would happen at the time the new missal was promulgated. I surmise that they would have expected people to learn some form of Latin Ordinary and then sing existing hymns after the propers had been recited.
    Thanked by 2bonniebede CHGiffen
  • With respect to the French, I note tht here in Ireland northern irish Catholicism is stronger then southern due to the linkage between religious and ultural identity there. Perhaps in france with its long history of secular persecutions of the church, there has been a similar effect?

    with respect to the seventies, I think it is simply the influence of the worldly culture of the importance of self expression over everything else, whether it is community expression or elements from a received tradition etc. In fact if your goal is self expression, tradition is not just useless but a hindrance to be removed. Couple that with a tradition where we have a hierarchical expression of worship, and pretty soon you have the self expression of the person at the top of the heap dominating, in this case that means the priest. This supposed freedom of self expression, has in my opinion lead to an increase in the amount and severity of clericalism from vII onwards, and the infantilisation of the laity. The restoration of a true sense of freedom, namely freedom as the ability to do the good, must be restored. In liturgy, this means the priest and others being willing to receive what is good from the tradition , be trained in it, see it as a service to subordinate their personal preferences and so on.
    Thanked by 2JulieColl CHGiffen