Gather—Third Edition
  • CatholicZ09
    Posts: 264
    This is going to be somewhat long and rant-ish, but I wanted to express my views to people who would understand.

    My home parish was an “OCP parish” until COVID shuttered everyone in March 2020. Our repertoire came solely from Breaking Bread (BB), and the psalms and Gospel Acclamations came solely from Respond & Acclaim. It wasn’t great, but it worked okay, and the liturgy team and I would pick what we felt was best from the limited amount of material in BB.

    When COVID hit, we went with a worship aid every weekend, and when hymnals were “allowed” to be put back in the pews, we continued with a worship aid because it allowed us to pick stuff outside of BB and was easier for our older parishioners not to have to fumble through a missal or hymnal. The parishioners told us that they preferred the worship aid.

    So, during this time, we were merged with another parish that used GIA’s Gather—Third Edition (G3). They were removed from the pews during COVID, and they also used a weekly worship aid.

    Well, a few weeks ago, we were informed by our pastor that all of us will be moving to G3 in order to unite our liturgies and give both churches something “in common.” From what I heard, the pastor was pressured from the parishioners of the other parish because they missed the hymnals, and the hymnals were donated to the parish by one parishioner about 13 years ago. They had a surplus of G3 hymnals, so nothing had to be purchased.

    The plan is to purchase a new hymnal whenever the Lectionary is revised. That could be soon or forever from now—who knows. All I know is, from what I’ve seen in G3, I’m not thrilled. I’m happy to not be going back to BB or any of the OCP disposables (at this time, at least), but G3 leaves much to be desired. GIA, it seems, has this want to exclude any use of masculine pronouns and wants to make everything inclusive. “Faith of Our Fathers” being changed to “A Living Faith” for one example.

    I’m more familiar with GIA’s Worship—Fourth Edition, and while it’s plagued with many of the same issues, the repertoire seems more suitable for my home parish, and I’m going to advocate that, if our pastor wants to stay with something similar to G3, to possibly move over to Worship when the time comes.

    I don’t know, I understand the desire to move back to a hymnal, but a weekly worship aid wasn’t so bad, I thought.
  • NihilNominisNihilNominis
    Posts: 986
    Isn’t G3 for the old Missal translation?

    Anyway, it’s awful, and if your pastor is remotely sympathetic with the direction you have gone, he should be aware that it will be nigh impossible with Gather 3 to even maintain the progress you’ve already made.
  • CatholicZ09
    Posts: 264
    I forgot to mention that we will still have a worship aid each weekend, but it will primarily used to list the hymn numbers. We will be allowed to occasionally use music from other sources, but the bulk of our music should come from G3.

    Nihil, it’s for the new translation. I think it was released right around the time the third edition of the Roman Missal was put into effect in November 2011.

    I know, I am worried about how much our music program could potentially be hindered by this. I’m trying to remain optimistic, but each time I pick it up and flip through it, my stomach drops.
    Thanked by 1LauraKaz
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,944
    IIRC, Gather 3 was published in 2011 for the new Missal translation.

    Index: https://www.giamusic.com/pdf/2_G3_Indexes.pdf
  • MarkB
    Posts: 1,025
    You have my sympathy.

    Even though both churches in the merged parish will use G3, will they be required to program the same music each Sunday? If so, such a condition might be more difficult to manage than just using the common hymnal.

    You might start by going through the hymnal's titles and creating a subset repertoire list of songs you would consider acceptable; then only select music from that subset, ignoring the rest of the songs in the hymnal.

    My parish's hymnal has over 700 songs, but my master repertoire list has only 130 pieces, including Christmas carols, and about 40% of the repertoire pieces are musical supplements to the hymnal.

    When I'm choosing music, it's much more efficient to select from my list of 130 songs rather than looking through an index of over 700 titles.
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 2,722
    If you’re going through the hassle of making a worship aid anyway, I’d make 2-3 selections from better stuff and use that, and only use G3 for one hymn per weekend. Then the hymnals are “being used” but richer fare is still offered. There is SO MUCH excellent hymnody available in the public domain, all nicely collated at hymnary.org.

    I wish you all the luck in the world when it comes to convincing your pastor…
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,934
    Before I retired, I played for some masses at school. They used Gather Reprehensive and it had lots of trash in it. I went through it and listed the hymns that were more traditional and acceptable. I never used anything else. Choose wisely and it may help you. As for pastors, that may be another issue.
  • CatholicZ09
    Posts: 264
    Mark, as of right now, we don’t need to program the same music.

    We have a meeting later this month, so I’ll be able to get a better idea of how many hymns outside of Gather we can use. Not sure if the pastor has any strict guidelines as to how many non-Gather hymns we can use. Wouldn’t surprise me if he did.
  • davido
    Posts: 874
    I have Gather 3 right now. There is enough traditional stuff that you can use it exclusively for 3-4 hymns per weekend. It is slim on good Eucharistic hymns, and the text changes are frustrating.

    Get the St Michael hymnal when you can. Worship IV is popular at cathedrals, but still has a lot of schlock.
  • Bombarde16
    Posts: 115
    I LOVE the St michael hymnal, but for those parishes that are faced with a congregation that would need a bit more of an ease into a beautiful hymnal like St. Michael, I fully endorse ILP's "Credo" hymnal.

    A bit of mush, sure... but it's the best of the mush to help ease people out of terrible music into a beautiful, dignified liturgy.
  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 1,295
    A way to throw a bone to using G3 every week would be to use the Guimont psalms in it
    Thanked by 1LauraKaz
  • Well, seeing as we’re over a month into using G3, I figured I’d update y’all on its implementation.

    A lot of people don’t like it. I think being a primarily OCP parish pre-COVID with the paperback missals causes a lot of disdain for the weightier G3. A lot of our older parishioners have complained about having difficulty holding it.

    Some more astute parishioners have complained about word changes, which is one of my biggest gripes about it, including the exclusion of masculine pronouns.

    Others have said that if the weekly worship aid provided everything needed for any given Mass, why put everyone through the trouble of a clunky new hymnal. I agree.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,934
    Gather us in on the Edmund Fitzgerald,
    Gather us in on the floor of the sea.
    Slosh us around in Davy Jones locker,
    Plenty good fishes for you and for me...


    There's your answer. Boat anchors with those clunky new hymnals. Let them sleep with the fishies. ;-)
  • Charles, if only!!! I often wondered what would happen if the hymnals would somehow disappear in the night…

    Would I….said person be charged with vandalism?
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,944
    Well, theft, and there is a Commandment about that.
  • davido
    Posts: 874
    Was it theft when Boniface chopped down the oak tree? Christ smashed the money lenders’ tables?

    Asking for a friend…
    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,944
    The friend should ask his/her confessor. And it would include the matter of breaking of duly enacted laws against theft, so that involves another Commandment. The Church has never made it easy for any laity to claim successfully the mantle of Jesus' cleansing of the money lenders' tables - it's rather deeply hierarchical that way, too. Consequentialism et cet.
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 2,722
    Davido, I had the same thought: is it really stealing if you dispatch with a worldly good to prevent souls from offending God? (Asking for a friend, lol!)
    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • GIA is bad business. Sorry to hear that you’ve been forced into using Gather 3. The editorial board is bent on bowdlerizing texts for political correctness and the new text authors are generally uninspired and trite. I could list five or six names off the top of my head but I won’t. Worship 4 is just as bad. Borderline new age Protestant. I suggest looking for a new job because it sounds like the hymnals will be sticking around for a bit.
  • Bombarde16
    Posts: 115
    As I currently use the combination of G3 and thr OCP Heritage Missal in my Parish, it is doable to make them work. But between a collective ~1200 "hymns" between the two, I maybe have a repertoire of about 200 hymns which are usable for thr Mass.

    I'm tired of tripe.... thankfully, implementation of the propers is well and smooth, albeit slow...
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,934
    CatholicZ09 we were in the situation many years ago when a new pastor arrived. He took one listen to the "Glory & Praise" hymnals in the pews, then organized a procession to the dumpster with all of them. It really upset the folks who did the "folk" mass and they complained mightily about their repertoire being destroyed, but they lived to wail another day.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,768
    Book burning, stealing or hiding is not a good precedent to set. I've found my Monteverdi in a dumpster, and wasted a lot of time hoping I could find missing plainchant books if I looked around long enough.

    I don't feel very warm towards Boniface, either (he would have done better to work on something non-living). During the lockdown some of my colleages were rapsodizing about having services outdoors in the beautiful grounds of their protestant and Unitarian churches. What is it about Catholics & parking lots? I have a hard time thinking of a local parish that has more than a palm or two, sans lawn.

  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,934
    One of my Methodist friends had to pack up the music collection during an extensive church building remodel. She put all the trash that was in the files in a large box. Somehow, (wink, wink) that box disappeared during the remodel and was never seen again. For some time afterwards, some choir members would say, "if we could only find that box." Music direction sometimes requires the skills of a Machiavelli.
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 2,722
    Covid did a number of parish many favors.
    Thanked by 1CharlesW
  • Diapason, I’m merely a volunteer cantor at my parish, not the director of music. Not being employed by the parish works in my favor when I can voice whatever I want to my pastor. Not that it does any good, though.
  • “God, We Praise You” was our opening hymn today, and I had to laugh because it had to be printed in the worship aid because G3 does not have it.

    Not to be crude, but how the hell does a supposedly Catholic hymnal exclude “God, We Praise You” from its repertoire?
  • Not to be crude, but how the hell does a supposedly Catholic hymnal exclude “God, We Praise You” from its repertoire?


    We use BB here, so I looked: the text of "God, We Praise You" is under copyright. If they didn't want to pay for it, then they ... didn't.

    I also have a St. Michael Hymnal (4th) here, and it doesn't have it either, probably for the same reason.
    Thanked by 1Marc Cerisier
  • davido
    Posts: 874
    I have always thought “God we praise you” was an inelegant, subpar text. Especially paired with NETTLETON it has always seemed a shade trite.

    That said, it is rather ubiquitous, serves a noble purpose in the ‘get everyone singing’ Novus Ordo world, and is the sort of thing it is very frustrating not to find in Gather 3
    Thanked by 1Marc Cerisier

  • Not to be crude, but how the hell does a supposedly Catholic hymnal exclude “God, We Praise You” from its repertoire?


    Well it was written by an Anglican, so some posters here certainly wouldn't want to use it based solely on authorship.

    Personally it's not a hymn I've ever heard.
    Thanked by 1Marc Cerisier
  • No, I too have never heard it. It just shows how diverse even the routine NO experience is.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 9,160
    "God we praise you" on NETTLETON does seem rather dull, starting with so many one-syllable words and one-note syllables. It thumps. My guess is that it was probably written to represent the Te Deum without the dreaded word "thee", a concept that Catholic parishes really don't need, since every Catholic congregation in the English-speaking world knows "Holy God, We Praise Thy Name" and sings it vigorously.
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,944
    I am no proponent of so-called "hieratic" English versification as such, but understand the immense practicality of "thee" in a vernacular that is rich in words ending in the long-E sound, and comparatively poor in words ending in the long-U sound. I also know that congregations will more quickly learn and remember texts that rhyme.
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen CharlesW
  • It could be worse. There’s always “Sing a New Church” with Nettleton. I grant that the argument I’m making is that for every mediocre text, there’s a worse one hanging around the corner.
    Thanked by 1LauraKaz
  • We've been using Gather 3 in my parish for nearly 10 years. I would not buy it again. Nor, at the rate they're going, any GIA product going forward, for reasons others have offered above. There is now a Gather 4 which in my eyes is Gather 3 sans David Haas - and it's an ugly book. We are not currently in the market to replace it, but when we do I will probably advocate for a return to OCP (in some form or another) which is what we left when we went to Gather in the first place. There are others I would consider as well, including the latest WLP book whose name escapes me (yes I'm aware that WLP is now part of GIA). I'd love to consider SMH but in this parish would not be able to get by on that book alone. But as far as I'm concerned, GIA is off the table for future consideration.
    Thanked by 1LauraKaz
  • Interesting!
  • francis
    Posts: 10,668
    Neither OCP or GIA support a Catholic paradigm in my opinion. Avoid them both.
    Thanked by 1hilluminar
  • GIA is a modernist organization, ditto OCP. The days are long gone of the rather deceptive “playing it down the middle, half traditional and half contemporary” of the hymnals of the 1980s.
    Thanked by 1LauraKaz
  • Neither OCP or GIA support a Catholic paradigm in my opinion. Avoid them both.


    That ship has sailed. Most parishes do not have that option, because a "traditional" hymnal would be very poorly received. With the caveat that this is anecdotal, the more "traditional" parishes by me that had St. Michael's Hymnal have either returned to Breaking Bread or switched to one of the dreadful ILP offerings.

    Most of us in the trenches have to be realistic. Even many perfectly orthodox Catholics do not want overly "traditional" music as the only part of their musical diet. The only way I've been able to do more "traditional" stuff is by providing the "contemporary" stuff (albeit the better stuff) alongside.
    Thanked by 1Brad_S_2018
  • one of the dreadful ILP offerings.


    In what way do you find these to be "dreadful"? I find that, while off the beaten path, their "Credo" hymnal, as well as their recent offering of "Hymnal 2022" to be wonderful steps in the right direction for people who can't make the leap to the SMH right away, while also getting mostly out of the GIA/OCP worlds...

    It just seems to me that, in the scheme of things, I wouldn't necessarily classify the ILP offerings as dreadful compared to OCP and GIA. ILP is at least trying to be Catholic.
  • Parish near me has Credo. I’ve paged through. It’s a mess. Weird keys. Odd songs that kind of sound like ones people know without having to pay for the rights — their “Jesus, Remember Me” is in the same key and meter as the Taize and is the same length. I haven’t tried this, but I bet you could play the accompaniment to the Taize under it. I’m sorry, but I think that’s scuzzy. (A lot of ILP’s Vince Ambrosetti’s “original” music walks that same line of almost copyright violating.)

    We were also sent, unsolicited, a St. Augustine hymnal in the mail. (Also, we were put on their emailing list by without me signing up for them, but my work spam filter takes care of that.) Same issues. I’ve kept it for reference but would never recommend it in a million years.

    Third-rate hymnals from a company that, in my opinion, employs questionable tactics. I would never, ever do business with them.
    Thanked by 1tandrews
  • since every Catholic congregation in the English-speaking world knows "Holy God, We Praise Thy Name" and sings it vigorously.


    I just spotted this, and have bad news for you.

    In a smaller, ethnically diverse (= a good mix of Africans who know older English hymns) parish in the UK/Ireland, where people do usually sing, HGWPTN just falls flat on its face. Hardly anyone sings. Many just look confused.

    Praise to the Lord the Almighty gets more traction. Even Alleluia Sing to Jesus got some warmth. But Holy God ... not even gonna try that one again.
  • ...parish in the UK/Ireland...


    Where are you located?
  • I'm being deliberately vague: the internet's a big place but too easy to identify individuals. Let's just say a smaller parish on the edge of a regional city in those countries.
  • HGWPTN just falls flat on its face.
    As someone now living in the centre of the Atlantic Archipelago that surprises me. But regional, even local, variations can still be considerable.
  • Gather: Reprehensive, as a mentor of mine used to say.
  • Gather: Reprehensive, as a mentor of mine used to say.


    I’ve heard a variation on that elsewhere: Apprehensive. Approach the book with a good bit of fear and hesitation. The pastor heard from his liturgy committee that it’s a “great, accessible hymnal” that will include everyone in singing, in contrast to that dreary, somber, anti-community building and rigid older music.
  • rich_enough
    Posts: 1,032
    With so many subpar hymnals out there - stuffed music you don't want, and missing the music you do - why not just go with a weekly worship leaflet?

    It's more work, I know, but well worth it: all of the good stuff, none of the bad, and no bulky hymnal in the pew with 80% of the content unused.

    It's time to stop outsourcing Catholic liturgical music to companies which (let's face it) do not share our priorities and have little interest in reviving true liturgical music in the Church. The Holy Mass - and your parishioners - are worth more than an off-the-shelf, color-by-numbers "Liturgy-in-a-Box."
  • It's time to stop outsourcing Catholic liturgical music to companies which (let's face it) do not share our priorities and have little interest in reviving true liturgical music in the Church. The Holy Mass - and your parishioners - are worth more than an off-the-shelf, color-by-numbers "Liturgy-in-a-Box."
    Amen.
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,944
    " . . . why not just go with a weekly worship leaflet?"

    And post it in a prominent, regular spot on your community's website. (Use music where you either don't need permission or you have permission to do so.)
  • @rich_enough, we used a worship leaflet from the time the hymnals were taken out of the pews due to COVID until this past July. Apparently, the parish we were merged with last year’s parishioners griped about wanting the hymnals back in the pews. Our parish was fine with the weekly worship leaflet. Our pastor, who likes to appease a select few, listened to those complaints and thus made all worship sites in the parish adopt G3.

    I have another meeting this week where I get to voice my disapproval of the hymnal. I’m not one of the ones whose opinion really holds any weight, though.
  • CatholicZ09
    Posts: 264
    Well, everyone, we got the blessing from our pastor to stop using Gather. Going back to worship aids on Ash Wednesday. Wahoo!!!