Threefold chant Amen from Canada
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,606
    At the end of the Exsultet from the previous Canadian Missal (Sacramentary) there was a threefold chant Amen, which, if memory serves, is attached here... I believe it was also included in CBW II and III as a potential "Great" Amen at the end of the per ipsum.

    Does this come from any official book (other than the Canadian)? Is it found anywhere else? Was it in the old American Missal (Sacramentary)?

    I know that it is not the same as the threefold Amen sung at Papal liturgies and I don't think I've run across it in my 6 years in the United States...
  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,114
    just sang it, never heard it.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,031
    Haven't heard this one before.
  • awruff
    Posts: 88
    FWIW, this is OK but I think the one in recent GIA hymnals, which was also in the 1998 (proposed) Sacramentary, is a bit stronger. But I think that one would be stronger if it ended C Bb G F G (to put it in the same key as the above for comparison purposes) rather than Bb A G F G.
    Oh, and I haven't seen the above one before either.
    Fr. Anthony Ruff, OSB
  • As a reminder, there is no triple or "Great" amen.
    Thanked by 1hilluminar
  • canadashcanadash
    Posts: 1,404
    "As a reminder, there is no triple or "Great" amen."

    I'd sung that amen for years, until our new pastor arrived and told me that there is no "Great" amen. In Canada, this seemed to often be the "go to" amen.

    Question then. I've come across an amen I'd like to use. It is a single amen, though slightly elaborate. Is this appropriate?
  • There's never been a restriction on the elaboration, just the silly tripling.

    The history and reason for the Amen makes tripling it really out of place.

    As they say in England, "Hear, hear!"

    Hear, hear is an expression used as a short, repeated form of hear him, hear him. It represents a listener's agreement with the point being made by a speaker. In recent usage it has often been misconstrued to be the homophonic phrase here, here, although this is incorrect.[1]

    It was originally an imperative for directing attention to speakers, and has since been used, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, as "the regular form of cheering in the House of Commons", with many purposes, depending on the intonation of its user.[2] Its use in Parliament is linked to the fact that applause is normally (though not always) forbidden in the chambers of the House of Commons and House of Lords.[3]
    The phrase hear him, hear him! was used in Parliament from late in the 17th century, and was reduced to hear! or hear, hear! by the late 18th century. The verb hear had earlier been used in the King James Bible as a command for others to listen.[2]
    Other phrases have been derived from hear, hear, such as a hear, hear (a cheer), to hear-hear (to shout the expression), and hear-hearer (a person who does the same).[2]
    The overuse of the phrase by an eager member of the House of Commons led Richard Brinsley Sheridan, in one speech, to deviate from his planned text and say "Where, oh where, shall we find a more foolish knave or a more knavish fool than this?". The lone Member of Parliament said "hear, hear."[4]


    Your new pastor's got CLASS!! Hear!
  • donr
    Posts: 940
    @Frogman, Even though there is no "Great Amen" or "3 Fold Amen" it always seems a little weird to me to sing the Mystery of Faith with organ and nice harmonies and then the Priest raises our Lord and recites "Through Him, with Him and in Him..." and we respond with an Amen that sounds weak in comparison. Even though everyone in the congregation is singing it.
    I guess to me it would nice to at least have some sort of organ acc. with it. Even though it is not a "Great Amen" it is the most important Amen we say together at Mass along with when we receive.

    Is there a good setting of the Amen that you might suggest?
  • There was a previous thread on this forum about the Amen (from November 2012) that might be of interest:
    http://forum.musicasacra.com/forum/discussion/7862/the-great-amen/p1
  • ronkrisman
    Posts: 1,328
    I was writing this when the comments from Frogman and Fr. Chepponis magically appeared before I could press "Post Comment." So perhaps I will not be accused of being redundant.

    Certainly the "Amen" can be repeated, just as composers have the leeway from the USCCB's BCDW to repeat other phrases from the various approved liturgical texts. All within reason, of course, and with the ultimate approval of the BCDW.

    As to Fr. Anthony's comment, I respectfully disagree, as the second and third Amen's begin where the preceding Amen's ended. At least that was my reasoning when I composed it.
  • RobertRobert
    Posts: 338
    Does this come from any official book (other than the Canadian)? Is it found anywhere else? Was it in the old American Missal (Sacramentary)?


    The composer of the threefold amen in the initial post is Stephen Somerville, who was responsible for quite a bit of liturgical music in Canada. His Mass ordinary was something like a "default" setting (along with MOC, of course) before the advent of the new translation. This "great amen" has been sung in English Canada for over thirty years.

    Somerville's compositions were often the most tasteful and agreeable of the selections in the Catholic Book of Worship II and III.
    Thanked by 1canadash
  • I can always tell when we use one of Fr Somerville's responsorial psalms ("SS") because they (alone in the CBW) are plainly based on Gregorian models.

    Robert, in my CBW III that Amen is unattributed. How do we know it's Fr Somerville's?
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,306
    In the "The Message" translation of the Roman Missal, the Eucharistic Prayer ends with a sung "This. This. This."
    Thanked by 2Gavin eft94530
  • ronkrisman
    Posts: 1,328
    @Adam: Perhaps I am not the only person who has no idea whatsoever what your last comment means. Care to break it down for us old folks?
    Thanked by 1Fr. Jim Chepponis
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,306
    "The Message" = Eugene Peterson's completely ridiculous "Modern Language" paraphrase of the Bible.

    "This." = Contemporary blog-speak for "I agree," equivalent to "Amen" or "Hear, Hear" (and bearing an interesting conceptual analogy to the above-mentioned homophonic mis-quote of "Here, here.")

    Given the odd amount of attention "This" has received 'round these parts, including much explanation and the engendering of Latinized versions ("hic," "haec," "hoc"), I thought perhaps it would have been more clear. Alas, a lack.
  • GavinGavin
    Posts: 2,799
    " it always seems a little weird to me to sing the Mystery of Faith with organ and nice harmonies and then the Priest raises our Lord and recites "Through Him, with Him and in Him..." and we respond with an Amen that sounds weak in comparison."

    DonR, when I use accompanied settings I play the responses extremely softly: the Memorial Acclamation (NOT the Mystery of Faith!!!) on an 8' Diapason or so, and then the Amen with a 4' added. You may prefer 8'4'2', and then 8',4',2', Mixture, but my point is to make the Memorial Acclamation very soft.

    Which does mean ignoring the ridiculous "FFF" in the Mass of Creation, but I can live with that.
  • SkirpRSkirpR
    Posts: 853
    Speaking of terminology here... I have seen a move in certain more traditional circles to call the acclamation after the consecration the "Mystery of Faith" instead of the "Memorial Acclamation," perhaps thinking that the change in terminology came with the newest translation of the Roman Missal.

    I will only point out that the GIRM still refers to it as the Memorial Acclamation.
  • RobertRobert
    Posts: 338
    @Andrew 9:15 am - it's attributed to Fr. Somerville in the CBW II. #393
  • donr
    Posts: 940
    I know I screwed up with the terminology. I have started calling the Memorial Acclamation the Mystery of Faith because that is what the priest have started calling it. I shouldn't be a sheeple I should correct them.

    @Gavin, I use the New ICEL setting of the Memorial Acclamations with Organ acc from CCWaterShed

    I don't have a setting for the Amen so we just chant it.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,796
    Hm: referring to previous posts by time only works well within the 24 hours since the comment was posted. After then, the time no longer is displayed. However, the date/time-stamp is a link, so you can copy the URL and use it to include a link in your comment back to the comment on which you're commenting.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,306
    lrn2blockquote
    Thanked by 1Ben Yanke
  • The first of three is the usual Gregorian response. I believe Fr. Stephen Somerville may have composed the other two. Together, this threefold Amen, which builds off of the Gregorian was included in Fr. Somerville's '(New) Good Shepherd Mass'. Recently, Dr. Jerzy Cichocki, Artistic Director and Conductor of St. Michael's Choir School has adapted and revised this mass setting according to the Third Edition of the Roman Missal in English. I believe that Amen is included.

    The Sistine choir will often do something similar at Papal Liturgies. That is, after the Gregorian response, add a tag, so to speak. It's a nice way to use the prescribed response and create something that is musically interesting and beautiful.
  • Apologies to all with much more expertise, but I have attached a page from Dr. Paul Ford's BFW which is similar (though not identical) to the "triple" Amen (Canadian one) under discussion. I see that Dr. Ford offered this up in the thread Fr. Chepponis linked to above.

    I would love to have an accompaniment of this piece that I could share with our parish musicians.
  • canadashcanadash
    Posts: 1,404
    Recently, Dr. Jerzy Cichocki, Artistic Director and Conductor of St. Michael's Choir School has adapted and revised this mass setting according to the Third Edition of the Roman Missal in English. I believe that Amen is included.


    Robin: I've inquired about Fr. Sommerville's Mass in the past and it was not yet published or ready. Do you know if it is available?
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,796
    I don't know this for a fact, but Fr. Somerville might not want to write music for Masses in English any more. He's been a friend and sympathizer to the SSPX for some years. In 2004, he was suspended by the Archbishop of Toronto. I don't know whether his case has been resolved.
  • Canadash: Yep. It's ready.
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,606
    Can it be posted online for academic purposes?
  • I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Cichocki today and he said that the mass was under copyright, but would be included in their upcoming hymnal, "Of Archangels and Saints" (I hope I got that right!).

    EDIT: Doc told me that I got it wrong, It's supposed to be "With Angels and Archangels".
    (Sorry Doc!)
    Thanked by 1canadash