Spoken Propers
  • I've never actually heard the Propers spoken in eight years of attendance (likely because almost every Mass I attended was either run by liturgical progressives or featured sung Propers). How is this done in the context of Mass? Does the celebrant just speak the text at the appropriate time, or is there some other procedure?

    This feels like a dumb question to me, but I haven't found a straightforward answer anywhere.
  • Schoenbergian,

    Nearly all of what the priest says is spoken quietly (and some almost silently).

    That said, I've seen three different "spoken Propers" approaches.

    1) Microphone on priest allows all of us to hear the Propers
    2) Propers spoken in a slightly raised voice.
    3) Propers spoken so that the altar boys can hear them.
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,520
    Assuming you're talking OF: I have only seen the Propers spoken by two priests:

    1) The chaplain at TAC New England at the daily English OF 'Low Mass' at the chapel;
    2) My pastor-emeritus at Mass in his private chapel.

    Both speak them Vox Clara: the Entrance Chant, before the sign of the cross; the Communion Chant after receiving the Chalice.
  • Thanks, Chris. I was asking about OF, to clarify. EF seemed more germane to the idea; I was unsure how spoken Propers would fit into the "flow" of the NO.
  • GambaGamba
    Posts: 235
    The biggest problem is a lack of accessible settings.

    I am currently preparing the POPE FRANCIS CATHOLIC BOOK OF LITURGY, the first resource of its kind, which will include all propers, even for feast days, engraved for ease of use, but in a beautiful, yet compact way. Each day is written out completely! No more flipping from one day to another, or seeing long blocks of text stacked on top of each other in an incomprehensible fashion.

    See the attached example, for the Epiphany.

    Accompaniment edition to follow in a couple years.

    This is an ideal publication for parishes which tried the Lalemant Propers and/or the Recto Tono Hymnal and found them too difficult.

    image
    2397 x 1066 - 142K
  • This is genius, @Gamba! I think my choir could handle this (with adequate rehearsal, of course.)

    Now, how can I keep the cantor from intoning the Communion Antiphon when he should be doing the Entrance?
    Thanked by 1Gamba
  • Communio recited from the pew by one, two, or all, at daily Mass: this I have seen in at least two places.

    There is no offertory ant. in the Missal nor a fortiori in the Missallette, so no reciting of that.

    The proper gradual is inevitably replaced by the responsorial psalm from the Lectionary, and we have all heard that read without note, I'm sure. Sometimes the verses are read but the response is sung. Besides, there is no translation of the gradual.

    I've heard a priest say the introit from the Missal a couple of times, I think always from the chair after going there without ceremony. If course if there's an "opening song" the proper introit is not envisioned by the rubrics.
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,520
    NB: Copious Purple

    Gamba: I hope that you intend to make this the THE MOST CATHOLIC-EST BOOK EVER, with footnotes and alternate versions. (You might even want to consider putting the preface in the middle before the index.)
  • It should be noted that the 'propers' that the priest speaks, mumbles, or whispers, are not The Propers. When The Propers, found in Graduale Romanum or in translation elsewhere, are not sung by a choir or cantor at a given mass, then there are no Propers at that particular mass. The 'antiphons' which appear in the missal are not The Propers.
  • CCoozeCCooze
    Posts: 756
    The priests at my parish, if purely a spoken Mass, will recite the entrance antiphon prior to the sign of the cross, the offertory after any offertory prayers, and the communio usually immediately after distributing Holy Communion, upon return to the altar.
  • GerardH
    Posts: 117
    What I've seen in numerous parishes (usually at weekday Masses without music) is similar to what Andrew Malton describes.

    • Entrance Antiphon recited by those in the congregation possessing a missal, sometimes also by the priest, while he proceeds to the sanctuary and venerates the altar
    • Communion Antiphon recited by congregation after the priest drinks from the chalice - often with a bell rung as a handy reminder

    At some places I know, the custom is to recite the Communion Antiphon as described on Sundays too, even when there is other music to follow. That's not necessarily what's in the GIRM.
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,624
    We have a Low Mass with organ music early on Sunday morning. When the professional organ piece stops the priest reads the Entrance Antiphon from the Missal and then the Sign of the Cross. Most celebrants read the Communion Antiphon right after they receive from the chalice - a few celebrants read the Communion chant before the Prayer after Communion.

    They do similar things at the daily Masses that don’t have music.
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,624
    This is an ideal publication for parishes which tried the Lalemant Propers and/or the Recto Tono Hymnal and found them too difficult.


    I’ve already called my lawyer.
  • IdeK
    Posts: 58
    Here in France, I know several priests who say the propers, especially the communion antiphon, at weekday masses when there is no music. In the parish where I met my husband it was the normal way of doing things, be it the pastor, the vicars or student priests.

    I'm not sure if it is done here though.
  • CatherineS
    Posts: 281
    It should be noted that the 'propers' that the priest speaks, mumbles, or whispers, are not The Propers. ....


    Whaa? Really? I thought the whole point was that they were.
  • Well, they're not.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,197
    At our daily masses, the missal communion Propers are spoken by the congregation. They are sung at Sunday masses. I have heard the entrance Proper spoken at some daily masses, depending on the priest.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,643
    The 'antiphons' which appear in the missal are not The Propers.
    Jackson - do you mean that to apply to Divine Worship: the Missal, for which the texts appear to me to be the same. or just to the Roman Missal? I realise of course that DWtM does not give the plethora of new selections found in the ferial two year cycle.
  • CatherineS
    Posts: 281
    Surely this does not please God.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,643
    CatherineS - God created a world which is in flux, change is of its essence. We hope that liturgical changes will be improvements, we can never expect to arrive at perfection.
    In this case, the texts given in the Missal, in Latin, are intended to lead to vernacular propers with musical settings‡. That this is a process taking many decades is hardly a surprise. The striving is surely not of itself displeasing to God.
    ‡ Bugnini, the Reform ... p891 :-
    The entrance and communion antiphons of the Missal were intended to be recited, not sung, and to inspire the creation of suitable songs in the vernacular.
    Thanked by 1CatherineS
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,643
    In my, small, home parish we always use the spoken Introit and Communion 'antiphons'. On Sundays the Introit lead by the reader, and followed by a verse or two of a hymn. On all other occasions lead by our priest. The congregation will have the texts available in a leaflet, except on weekdays of OT, so that they can join in.
  • Hawkins,

    That Bugnini proposes such nonsense gives us an insight into why some folk mistrust the Ordo Missae he helped create. He also proposes that the reason for the abandonment of Latin is that (and I kid you not) the addressee needs to understand what is being said to him. He thinks Mass is addressed to the lay faithful.
  • dad29
    Posts: 1,789
    ....are not sung by a choir or cantor at a given mass, then there are no Propers at that particular mass.


    True for the OF, perhaps, but NOT true for the EF. Of course, the EF's Propers are in the Missal, not buried in some obscure not-a-Missal place.
  • dad29
    Posts: 1,789
    @Ryand......the link explains how our parish's Liturgy Staff can print "Propers" in the weekly pamphlet which do NOT correspond to those found on my "Square Note" app, even though the Propers are neither spoken NOR sung for any Mass at that parish.

    Sheesh.
  • Not out to pillory Bugnini like some here, but does anyone notice a contradiction when he says in one breath that the Missal propers are to be spoken and not sung, and also that they should inspire vernacular compositions? So which is it?
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,643
    The Missal propers were written in Latin, to set them to music would be to detract from the treasury of Gregorian chant, and therefor they were not to be sung. But in the vernacular there were no settings of the Propers, and no reason to restrict ourselves to texts with ancient musical settings, so new texts could be added to match the vastly increased variety of biblical readings. And there was emphasis on having a liturgy in which some singing would be the norm.
  • "liturgical progressives "

    Definition, please. Do they wear Elmer Fudd Hats and carry arms?
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,197
    Nah, progressives wear neon mantillas, carry glow-in-the-dark rosaries, and posses attitude.

    I use propers by Rice and Fr. Weber. Both are good and perfectly acceptable.
  • Mr Hawkins -
    This is not at all meant to be snide, but your just-above-here analysis of the situation regarding propers sounds like a perfect justification of the more-or-less (mostly less) 'proper' hymnody which has all-but-universally replaced The Propers at English masses.

    And, I will restate my assertion that a mass that has not The Propers from Graduale Romanum (or a translation of them set to the same or other music) has no propers at all. The 'antiphons' appearing in the current missal and missalette are not The Propers - which so many here say that they want restored. And they are right! They should be.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,643
    But do you regard the texts in the Ordinariates Missal as Propers?
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,197
    They are current Propers and fit the liturgy. Some of the older ones didn't adapt to going from a one year to a three year cycle and are hard to work with.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,952
    Around here (Boston area), it's not uncommon to hear the entrance antiphon recited from the missal (and the pew booklet), at weekday Masses.
  • What Chonak describes is, after all, precisely what is supposed to happen if there are not any GR Propers or other sung music. When there are no propers or other music, then the 'antiphons' in the missal are what are to be said by the priest - not sung by the priest or anyone else.

    Mr Haekins -
    The Proper Introit, Gradual, Tract or Alleluya & Verse, Offertory, and Communion are in Divine Worship:The Missal, and are said or sung at all Ordinariate masses. They are English translations of the Latin originals in GR. At Walsingham they are sung at every mass, high, low, or in between. I don't understand your question. Are you suggesting that the DW:TM propers are not The Propers? They are. (By the way: do you have a copy of Saint Gregory's Prayer Book - Ignatius Press.?)
    _________________________

    It is often asserted that the propers do not always agree with or compliment the lectionary.
    So what?
    They don't (except when they do) and they needn't.
    Neither do they agree always with the old lectionary as followed in the EF.
    Often they do converge.
    Often they do not.
    This is nothing to get bent out of shape about.
    The tension is, in and of itself, enriching, stimulating, and conducive to meditation.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,197
    I think the important thing is when ANY propers are used. Many places have thrown them all out in any form, old or new.
    Thanked by 1hilluminar
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,624
    What Chonak describes is, after all, precisely what is supposed to happen if there are not any GR Propers or other sung music. When there are no propers or other music, then the 'antiphons' in the missal are what are to be said by the priest - not sung by the priest or anyone else.


    This is your opinion and not what is stated in the current liturgical books in the United States. You should clarify that when you post.

    Yes, the priest shouldn’t be singing them. But someone else singing those texts is actually legally on par with the Graduale Romanum as option 1 in the GIRM.
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,892
    Priest alone reciting is last choice...and not something I've witnessed. Normally, it's the faithful reciting it at the bidding of the celebrant - daily Mass-goers have habits about this.

    GIRM:

    47. When the people are gathered, and as the priest enters with the Deacon and ministers, the entrance chant begins. its purpose is to open the celebration, foster the unity of those who have been gathered, introduce their thoughts to the mystery of the liturgical time or festivity, and accompany the procession of the priest and ministers.

    48. This chant is sung alternately by the choir and the people or similarly by a cantor and the people, or entirely by the people, or by the choir alone. in the Dioceses of the united States of America there are four options for the entrance chant: (1) the antiphon from the Missal or the antiphon with its psalm from the Graduale Romanum as set to music there or in another setting; (2) the antiphon and psalm of the Graduale Simplex for the liturgical time; (3) a chant from another collection of psalms and antiphons, approved by the conference of bishops or the Diocesan bishop, including psalms arranged in responsorial or metrical forms; (4) another liturgical chant that is suited to the sacred action, the day, or the time of year, similarly approved by the conference of bishops or the Diocesan bishop.

    If there is no singing at the entrance, the antiphon given in the Missal is recited either by the faithful, or by some of them, or by a reader; otherwise, it is recited by the priest himself, who may even adapt it as an introductory explanation (cf. no. 31).

    87. In the Dioceses of the united States of America, there are four options for singing at communion: (1) the antiphon from the Missal or the antiphon with its psalm from the Graduale Romanum, as set to music there or in another musical setting; (2) the antiphon with psalm from the Graduale Simplex of the liturgical time; (3) a chant from another collection of psalms and antiphons, approved by the conference of bishops or the Diocesan bishop, including psalms arranged in responsorial or metrical forms; (4) some other suitable liturgical chant (cf. no. 86) approved by the conference of bishops or the Diocesan bishop. this is sung either by the choir alone or by the choir or a cantor with the people.

    However, if there is no singing, the antiphon given in the Missal may be recited either by the faithful, or by some of them, or by a reader; otherwise, it is recited by the priest himself after he has received communion and before he distributes communion to the faithful.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 1,643
    MJO - no I am not questioning the propriety of the antiphons in DW:tM, with psalm verses from the Coverdale Psalter. GIRM as augmented by §13 of the rubrical directory is quite clear to me. However it could be argued that in the USA the Missal 'antiphons' have the same degree of approbation (this is not true elsewhere, certainly not in England&Wales). - I am not saying I like this situation, indeed I deplore our bishops reluctance to tackle the issue, preferably by approving a translation of GR.
    So I see that 'Propers' include GS, in Latin, and GR in Latin (with verses from the Nova Vulgata?)†. And in the Ordinariates the DW:tM antiphons with Coverdale. These are all publications with explicit Vatican authority (including OCM). I am not sure what else has the same degree of propriety. GS is the only music book which provides for any parish Mass in one volume.
    † to any tune, Rossini Propers, or Medicean, not just Solesmes!