Using a church in a recording
  • Don9of11Don9of11
    Posts: 355
    I recently saw this recording from this artist on FB. In it she uses a Catholic Church "St. Mary's" in her song "Most High God". This is the parish I grew up in and sang with the choir for three decades, So I'm a little protective of my old parish. Is this proper? Do you need the pastors permission or diocesan permission to use a church in this way?

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=VJvK2blFNvo
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,081
    Well, she probably had the pastor's permission. She's a music minister for a Catholic parish, fwiw.
  • When parishes here are used for filming television shows or movies they have to get permission of the archdiocese (they review the script), the Blessed Sacrament has to be moved elsewhere, and a real priest has to be present to make sure nothing weird happens (even something like the actor-priest baptizing the actor-baby incorrectly).
    Thanked by 1Don9of11
  • If only the same guidelines had been in place when Fr Hood's Baptism was filmed.
    Thanked by 1CCooze
  • We would all be much poorer off in our knowledge and listening experiences of some of the world's great organs and organ literature if there were no recordings or recitals allowed. I see them as acts of praise, acts of thanksgiving for the gift of music, and as opportunities for evangelism.

    Indeed, an organ recital can be and often is a 'sacred concert' insofar as that the greater part of organ literature is based on sacred cantus firmi, chorales, and hymns, or was intended as ornaments of the liturgy. (The current decadent fad for playing Wagner transcription and such, all the rage now in certain university organ studios, is another matter altogether.)
  • I agree with MJO that choral and organ concerts are certainly permissible and have a rather well-established precedence. That said, this type of music video is a bit more debatable. I take comfort, however, that the lion's share of the video is actually taking place outside of the church and the narrative simply shows her entering the church to sing to God.

    I find it rather sad to read that she is a catholic musician.  What I find odd is that so many catholic musicians try sooooo hard to imitate pop culture. (Don't get me started... I was just lecturing my schola on Wednesday about the how/why we make music 'sacred' —i.e.: totally set apart for God.)

    I really hope she doesn't foist this upon her parish during Mass. Considering her backup choir in the video, I suspect she does, as I'd guess they are her choir members.

    I also find it interesting that she's standing there singing "there is no one like You" and yet they never pan and show Jesus in the tabernacle or even a crucifix. At least she's not standing there with her back to the altar, but still. ugh.
  • It's poor music and the video is dumb. Far from the poorest music or the dumbest ideas foisted upon the Church.
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,081
    I would imagine the tabernacle was empty for that recording...at least it ought to have been. And it is shown in passing late in the video (no sanctuary lamp is burning that I can see.) But the image of the cross is shown in light in the background through the vestibule door, completed by reflection from the floor - a rather deliberate effect, I suspect.
  • Liam, I confess, I was skimming about. I didn't care to listen to the whole thing. And even if the tabernacle was empty for the recording, you could certainly close the door and make it look like she was singing to Jesus. But shot after shot is just of her face singing, and not the Person to Whom she was singing.
    Thanked by 1donr
  • MarkB
    Posts: 360
    It's a typical praise and worship song:

    -7/11 song: same seven or so words sung eleven or so times repeatedly, although stretching it out into six minutes is tiresomely excessive
    -"Jesus is my boyfriend" lyrics
    -Emotionally manipulative music and arrangement
    -Emotionally affected facial expressions and gestures on the part of the singers
    -The video and performance style highlight the musician's performance and appearance just like a secular counterpart

    It's not far afield from what OCP has attempted to do with their staff "artists," attempting to transform them into Churchpop, personality cult stars through rock/pop style music, videos, concerts and interviews. She's just imitating what she's seen from Hillsong and the like.

    She does have a pretty voice. I'd like to have her in my choir.

    Here's a brilliantly written and filmed parody of contemporary Christian worship music. It's called "The Worship Song Song":

    https://youtu.be/fWicNLXxtj4
  • Oops.
    I didn't watch the video, and won't, and I'm glad.
    But my commentary still stands.
  • Mark, thank you for that bit of entertainment. I love the forgot to mention Jesus moment.
  • jcr
    Posts: 81
    This is further evidence that the outside world has influenced the Church more than the other way around during our lives. There are many instances of this and the folks on this forum are well aware of it. I have often argued with students, choir members, and Evangelical relatives that the music used in the worship of God in necessarily different than the music of the pop culture and that the music of a corrupted culture must necessarily be corrupt. This video displays this on several levels that really require no detailed explication.
  • LarsLars
    Posts: 4
    This is tragic but I’ve seen/heard even worse. Obviously this sort of music should be nowhere near the church let alone be part of the church. Lord have mercy.
  • GerardH
    Posts: 159
    Eh, it's not my preferred music style, and I certainly wouldn't approve of its use in the liturgy, but I see no problem with it as a devotional exercise. You're not the intended audience for this piece. Go take your musical elitism someplace else.
  • the music of a corrupted culture must necessarily be corrupt


    This statement has interesting implications, given the abusive behaviour and subsequent corrupt behaviour that have wracked the church in the last 50 or so years,
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,081
    If one imagines it's just the past 50 or so years, one is very naive.
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 8,870
    If one imagines the music sung in the church has not gone significantly corrupt in the past 50 years, one is also very naive.
  • In the US, it was corrupt far before Vatican II. Let's not pretend that the 1950s were a cultural high point in the Church's history.
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 8,870
    as per chonak's request, moving post.
  • donr
    Posts: 949
    I watched the video and I didn't care for it at all. The whole piece focuses on the young woman who has a lovely voice and appears to play the piano to a degree. But I am shocked by the fact that the subject matter of the video was never featured in the video.

    I am sure they received permission from the pastor, but the vigil candle is lit and the tabernacle doors were closed. So that implies the Lord was present in the tabernacle.

    So the pastor should be in trouble by the Bishop. IMHO
    Thanked by 1CCooze
  • jcr
    Posts: 81
    There is a level of egalitarianism that is just plain foolish. It is unfortunate, but evident virtually everywhere, that our culture has lost the capacity to gauge appropriateness and to make quality judgments with regard to practically everything. It is not elitist to identify the quality differences between or among things. By quality judgments I do not mean just good or bad, but rather to judgments among qualities (identifying characteristics) of things and to derive from such judgments a position on the appropriateness of a thing for the use to which it has been put. All music is not equal and is, therefore, not all equally appropriate for a given purpose. I won't go into this here, but many people speak of the power of music to communicate, but when pressed on an issue of appropriateness such as we have here and asked "what does the music say?", the answer is always to deny in some way the actual communicative power of the music. Try this sometime. Or try to answer the question yourself in relation to something you may find pleasing on some level, but inappropriate on another.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,331
    [Some of the comments in this thread are off-topic. Please stick to the topic of the original posting.--RC, admin]
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen Don9of11
  • jcr
    Posts: 81
    I had intended to comment that permission from the pastor would be required to use the church and that there are conditions, mentioned by others, that need to be met. This is the case for concerts and other sort of "special" events.