Resource for a campus ministry program
  • Mike R
    Posts: 106
    I'm new on the job as director of a Newman Center (at a small liberal arts school with a pretty good music program), and am a bit perplexed as to what to do with the music. As it is, I would definitely say it's much, much better than what one would expect to find in campus ministry: mostly the better stuff from OCP, and piano, violin, cello, and bass instead of guitars and bongo drums (I'm told they have had organists in the past, as well). I should note that we hire someone else (usually a student or recent alum) to run the music program, direct the choir, and play piano/organ, but our current person (who is really great) will be leaving, so I do have some opportunity to leave a bit of a mark on the program.

    We're currently using OCP's "Breaking Bread," which isn't horrible for our purposes since the students select good stuff for the most part, but it's ridiculously overpriced, so I would like to switch to something better and cheaper (organically building on our current program and allowing it to remain "Buy the Parish Book of Chant" won't suffice). Ideally for our circumstances, I'd like to get Worship III, but forthcoming translation change, economy, etc. We do have some Gather Comprehensives collecting dust, but I'm finding that I'm not even remotely familiar with most of the music in it, whereas there is actually some decent (i.e., not absurdly sappy and/or heretical) stuff composed in the last decade in Breaking Bread.

    A couple of people have recommended WLP's "We Celebrate" series, and I do like the hymnal (and the idea of a 3-year disposable hymnal), but the Mass settings are simply atrocious; just flipping through the pages gave me flashbacks to the mid-80s. I also just looked at the contents for Gather Comprehensive II, which GIA now has available in softcover at a much cheaper rate, and it actually looks pretty good at first glance. It might be an option if I put together a supplement with some more traditional hymns, chant Mass settings, etc. The students are also pretty stuck on having the readings available, so I would need to subscribe to some smaller missalette sort of thing as well (and before you say it, these are college students; 80% of them are not going to go out and buy their own hand missals, and the ones that would would probably forget to bring them; it's really a great group of students, but...they're still students).

    I'm not a pro at this, so bear with me: would printing up my own weekly worship aids be a realistic possibility, just subscribing to one of the license sites? I have no clue how that works, but would certainly be willing to put forth the effort if it would in fact be a worthwhile alternative.

    Thanks for any thoughts!
  • eft94530eft94530
    Posts: 1,574
    Mike: "put forth the effort"

    You will do it every week(end) even if dead-dog sick.
    Think of your worst case scenario:
    Shortest amount of warning to prepare for a liturgy.
    Largest number attending.
    Sufficient paper and toner.

    My stats: text only, once per month, 200+ sheets, 2-4 hours.

    Others do it more frequently, and can provide more datapoints.
  • Mike R
    Posts: 106
    Yeah, I guess it would be a bit rough. But we don't have Masses in the summers or during other breaks, generally just go to the cathedral down the road as a group for HDOs (though I'd prefer to change that if I can get priests), and have a pretty consistent number of attendees. Of course I'd prefer to just get the "perfect" disposable aid (until a "perfect" permanent hymnal exists with the new translations), but that doesn't exist.