Does the person who sings the psalm have to be a Catholic?
  • PaixGioiaAmorPaixGioiaAmor
    Posts: 1,473
    In all fairness, the Chabanel Psalms have gotten better, too. I wasn't enamored with some of the early efforts, but they have improved with time.


    Yeah, I agree with that too. I've used some of them. I like some of them, but I also like Gelineau and Guimont too.

    Alstott OTOH (who might well be a competent composer, but didn't show it with R&A) = someone must have locked him in a room and given him 3 hours to complete Psalms for every Sunday and Feast of the three year cycle.
  • PaixGioiaAmorPaixGioiaAmor
    Posts: 1,473
    What's a pastoral musician? (also ducking and running) ;-)


    I could send you the essay I wrote on the subject.
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    PGA, the legendary Jason Pennington wrote the best essay on that subject I've ever encountered. Does anyone have a copy of it?
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,006
    I could send you the essay I wrote on the subject.


    I am sure you could, but please don't. LOL. I never liked the term since it sounds like one of those feel-good, made-up terms from the seventies. I will stick with Organist/Choirmaster, or Director of Music/Organist. Those are pastoral enough for me.
    Thanked by 2francis kenstb
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    I don't mean to pile on Guimont, but obviously I would look forward to the Gregorian Eripe me Domine next Sunday much more than... (I can't even face looking it up right now). I also think Guimont's paradigm is cantor and organ which often makes some things very awkward chorally: the Ash Wed. Psalm makes basses hang out above the staff before plunging to a divisi chord. We use our pencils a lot!

    My next biggest gripe is that it's a monoculture that crowds out alternates in a way that a pointed Anglican or Lutheran psalter does not. So far I've eliminated it from the Easter Vigil, replacing with anthems and a couple of responsorials by Richard Crocker, my first chant teacher. I figure in the inky darkness there's no risk of a visitor being confused by the printed refrain in the hymnal.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    replacing with anthems

    what now?
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    I think I've posted our lineup elsewhere before. Crocker is similar to SEP in style and graspability in the dark by the congregation. Substituting polyphony like Palestrina's Sicut Cervus for GIA's is I hope unexceptionable. The boldest use I've made of the pastoral substitutions rubric is to alternate Burgess' Vinea mea with Mendelssohn's O come to the Water (St. Paul).
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    Obviously, my opinion is just my opinion, but I'm quite opposed to the replacement of the Easter Vigil psalmody with anthems and choral-performance music.

    (In fact, I'm currently working on an essay which addresses this in the Episcopalian context of turning the Vigil's liturgy of the Word into an Esater-themes lessons and carols.)
    Thanked by 2kenstb Spriggo
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Adam, are you talking absolutism, ala our friend Todd F.?
    To illustrate, how would you react if the response to the Genesis reading was Bob Hurd's ENVIA TU ESPIRITU; the response to Exodus was Janet Sullivan Whitaker's EXODUS 15: CANTICLE OF THE FREE; and so forth until Ezekial with the response being the Palestrina Sicut Cervus, aka Ps.42?
  • PaixGioiaAmorPaixGioiaAmor
    Posts: 1,473
    This probably isn't outright illicit but I think you're on shaky ground.
    Thanked by 1CharlesW
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    We'll all eagerly await the outlining of Adam's (April 1?) ideal then. The lessons and carols approach was actually my second choice; I wanted to replace the lukewarm responsorial participation accompanied by arm-waving with responsive chanting of the whole Psalm with the congregation, exposing them to the full range of Anglican and Gregorian chanting. I was told having enough light to read a booklet was quite unthinkable. If everyone didn't so much enjoy the way things are now I suppose I could try for a projection system. :-P
  • PaixGioiaAmorPaixGioiaAmor
    Posts: 1,473
    They shouldn't need light to repeat a simple refrain.

    Sorry that a simple uplifted arm in time, akin to what a conductor would do is so offensive.

    "Traditional Catholicism" has so many straw men and monsters under the bed.
    Thanked by 1Spriggo
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,006
    "Traditional Catholicism" has so many straw men and monsters under the bed
    ROFL.

    If I had monsters under my bed they would all look like Flat Stanley. I have a waterbed. LOL.

    I agree on the psalms. Those are readings and should not be replaced with other works.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    Ha! Let me try to remember...Yes, I have been called worse names than Catholic traditionalist.

    If you want a service of 14 Readings, why encumber them with refrains at all?
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,006
    It isn't a matter of what I want, but what is printed on the page for me to follow. I don't write the books.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    I don't think Adam is objecting on legalistic grounds, and the Vigil escape clause permitting different Psalms or Canticles seems quite clear to me. Certainly Charles will agree that the "Responsorial Gradual from the GR" (a slightly odd expression) is explicitly an option for Sundays? The question maybe is whether it is still a 'fourth reading'.
    Thanked by 1Adam Wood
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,006
    The question for me is how fast the pastor would have my head if I utilized a Vigil escape clause. LOL.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    Well, there are limits to how much of one's own discretion one may employ, and technically it's not pastoral if the Pastor is not on board. But out of curiosity, do you get to choose after the first Lesson between Bless the Lord O my soul and Upright is the Word of the Lord (the GIA options), and would your head roll if you sang Jubilate Domino out of the Gradual or Bruce Ford's O be joyful in the Lord instead?

    I'd be quite interested to hear how many churches do the 7 Gregorian Tracts (should I be reading something into Solesmes calling Ps. 99/100 a "Canticle" while GIA calls Isaiah a "Responsorial Psalm" btw?), all to the same tune.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,006
    I am using a WLP source and the antiphon is "Lord, send out your Spirit, and renew the face of the earth." The verses begin "Bless the Lord, O my soul...." which are the verses from Psalm 104.

    "Upright is the word..." is the beginning verse to an alternate psalm I am not allowed to use. It's antiphon is "The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord."

    The pastor doesn't allow choices or alternates, which in a way is simpler. I just do what is in the worship aid and don't have to worry about it.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    responsive chanting of the whole Psalm with the congregation, exposing them to the full range of Anglican and Gregorian chanting.

    Yeah, that would be my preference.

    I don't think Adam is objecting on legalistic grounds

    Quite right.
    As I said - it is only my own opinion. I certainly did not mean to suggest you were doing something illicit.

    Adam, are you talking absolutism, ala our friend Todd F.?

    I try to never be an absolutist.


    Again - this is just my own thinking, and is based on my understanding of what the whole point of liturgy is generally, and the vigil in particular.
    ------------------
    From my unfinished essay....


    I think this approach ['Lessons and Carols' rather than the appointed Psalms] to the Easter Vigil liturgy of the word is quite wrong, and misses the mark wildly with regards to the purpose and intentions of the Vigil itself.

    A Lessons and Carols service is a time to reflect and remember the stories presented. We hear them, we ponder them, we listen to a choir sing beautiful music that gives us hope and joy and connects us with the traditions of our local community and family - that song we sang last year, that hymn that my grandmother loved.

    The Vigil's Liturgy of the Word is something else entirely - an invitation to enter into the ancient narrative directly, to join not just with our parents and grandparents, but with the Moses and Miriam, with Abraham and Isaac. We gather in darkness and fire, as they did, and slightly drugged by the incense, tired because of the hour, mesmerized by the movement of candles in procession and the sound of the Exsulstet. Then we begin at the beginning, listening to the story of the creation of the world, with the hypnotic repetition: "Evening came, and morning followed."

    When we have heard the whole story of the first seven days, marveling at the wonder and greatness of God, we respond as the ancient Israelites did when the Holy Spirit first inspired them to record this story: by singing Psalms together as a whole people, unified by our shared memory of an event outside of human history.

    Later, we hear the story of the Exodus from Egypt, that most important event in the history of our Jewish predecessors. It, too, is hypnotic and musical - repeating over and over the details of the story "a wall of water on the right and on their left" "Pharaoh, and his horses, and his chariots, and his chariot drivers." The story ends with a song, "I will sing unto the Lord... he has been my savior." And indeed, because God is our savior, we sing the same words that they did.

    We are not there as a congregation to learn about our history, or to celebrate our history.
    We are there to enter into it, to experience it.

    There is much good to be found in listening to a choir, and a great deal of beauty and value in the anthems and spirituals that predominate choral literature. The "Lessons and Carols" approach to the Vigil liturgy has much to recommend it in terms of comfort, delight, and spiritual engagement.

    But - I would suggest that it also lacks something. Critically, I believe it removes the gateway by which we enter into community with the 'great cloud of witnesses' that has gone before us, turning liturgy into concertizing, and ultimately alienating us from our past and from a direct encounter with God.
    ---------


    Thanked by 1barreltone
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,757
    Just as an aside, in the OF Easter Vigil, there is no inky darkness during the Liturgy of the Word. While the altar candles are not lit, the lights are supposed to be turned on before that part of the service begins. The Old Testament readings are not done in darkness as an echo of the trope of the blind Synagogue.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    the lights are supposed to be turned on before that part of the service begins


    I wasn't aware the Missal specified the status of the "house lights."

    Does it? (I'm genuinely curious.)
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,006
    The missal says after the priest sings the last, "Light of Christ" and all reply, "Thanks be to God" Then the Deacon places the paschal candle on a large candlestand prepared next to the ambo or in the middle of the sanctuary. And lights are lit throughout the church, except for the altar candles.

    That's the way we do it.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    Thanks for the citation. Good to know.

    (Does not impact my understanding of what is going on or what should be sung.)
  • PaixGioiaAmorPaixGioiaAmor
    Posts: 1,473
    I guess the question is still "why can't you find some simple, chanted setting of each psalm and use it?"
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    The lights have been discussed before. Local tradition of having someone at the circuit-breaker box waiting for the Gloria sometimes trumps the rubric, unfortunate as the symbolism in making congregants quench their lighted tapers may be.
    Thanked by 1Andrew Malton
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,006
    We have some aisle lights on the side walls that stay on to keep the priests and congregation from falling. The overhead lights come on at the appropriate time.
  • Liam
    Posts: 3,757
    Richard

    I get that. I will just always do my bit to illuminate why the practice is not well thought out.
    Thanked by 1Richard Mix
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    The overhead lights come on at the appropriate time.
    Whenever that is ;-)

    We're still waiting on Adams solution (probably with some qualifying reservations ;-)). A candle and oil lamp Vigil with Gregorian Canticles would certainly be solemn, but would it unite us with the 'great cloud of witnesses' who have celebrated the OF Vigil since 1994 or so to Guimont? That turn of phrase does not come first to mind when describing typical attendance ;-)

    "why can't you find some simple, chanted setting of each psalm and use it?"
    Well, you could, and this is indeed the norm. The people don't really vote with their vocal chords (PGA, have you witnessed the contrary somewhere?) the way they do with Schubert's Deutsche Messe but they (at St. David of Wales) have become so good at the Guimont refrains on Sundays that I've hesitated to change things. Btw, a conductor's gesture might be quite different than what I sometimes see from cantors. More effective than a raised arm is an open palm at breathing level (below and to the side of the manhasset stand), but given a singing priest congregations can be just as effectively be cued by an expectant smile and the understanding that they are part of a dialogue.

    It's a question, how one goes about building an arch brick by brick, and stepping stones ought to be strategically placed. When I consider the tradition I tend, though, I more and more appreciate my predecessor's canniness.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    We're still waiting on Adams solution

    I gave it above: sing the Psalms.
    Gregorian and/or Anglican tones and/or Responsorial settings.

    A candle and oil lamp Vigil with Gregorian Canticles would certainly be solemn, but would it unite us with the 'great cloud of witnesses' who have celebrated the OF Vigil since 1994 or so to Guimont?


    Clearly, I am referring to the texts, not the lighting.
    Thanked by 1kenstb
  • Ignoto
    Posts: 126
    ...should the same be required of all choir members if the verses of the responsorial psalm are sung by the choir?

    Sad to say, very few choirs around here sing the verses of the responsorial psalm, so this question is a mere hypothetical!

    That could be due to GIRM #61 and #102, which state respectively: "the psalmist, or cantor of the Psalm, sings the Psalm verses at the ambo or another suitable place" and "it is the psalmist’s place to sing the Psalm."

    It's been my understanding that the rubrics call for a single psalmist to sing the Responsorial Psalm, in contrast to the rubrics given for the verse for the Gospel Acclamation (GIRM #62) and psalms during Communion (GIRM #87) which provide the option for the choir to sing together at those times.

    Does anyone know of any documentation indicating that it is a current norm or an approved option to have the verses of the Responsorial Psalm sung by the choir? Thanks.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,006
    Appropriate time for overhead lights. See my quote from the Roman Missal above. That is the appropriate time.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    sing the Psalms.
    This is quite obviously a given, but which ones, how, and by whom? The whining about "concertizing" implies that you would find 1. O be joyful (Britten)...7. Sicut cervus (Palestrina) somehow "alienating", unless I'm misunderstanding you.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    I wasn't aware I was whining. I think I said (more times than usual) this is just my opinion.

    It's not an absolutist or a legalist argument. To me it's a more of a poetic issue, and I think about it wholly poetic terms. (My little essay-excerpt above is pretty much exactly what I think on the matter, in more -or-less the same language I think about it with.)

    You said:
    The lessons and carols approach was actually my second choice; I wanted to replace the lukewarm responsorial participation accompanied by arm-waving with responsive chanting of the whole Psalm with the congregation, exposing them to the full range of Anglican and Gregorian chanting.


    What you wanted to do is also what I would want.

  • Gradual or bust.
    All else is whining and deflecting.

    Unless you are part of the venerable Lutheranic Ordinariate. (HT Adam). Then it's fitting to sing bombastic SATB paraphrases in common meter. And only that.

    Purple bold italics ended.


    Seriously, be grateful for the singers God sends you. It is possible to be firm in Catholic identity and allow non-Catholics to sing. It can be a great point of evangelization and conversion. There is a difference between singing the psalm and other choral ventures. Unless it's scripture... which accounts for most of the propers... dunno.

    Seems like this is a case for charity and common sense.
    Yes to respectful non-Catholics. No to satanists no matter how cuddly.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    No to satanists no matter how cuddly.


    But they're SO CUDDLY sometimes.

    [EDIT: PICTURE OF FREAKY-DEEKY SATANIST REMOVED - NOT CUDDLY ENOUGH]

    Don't you just want to hug him?
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 8,234
    uhhh... what is with the forehead here?
  • .
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    Maybe, Adam, I don't know enough about what really goes on at Anglican Easter Vigils, having never attended one. The Orders of Service and bulletins I've seen look much like the GR, with no hint of grandma's favorite hymn. Lutheran and Methodist Vigils are laxer, the response to the Genesis Reading usually being...yet more Genesis, sung to Pinkham's or Haydn's "In the beginning" (talk about lighting 'effects'!). But the idea of connecting to the Israelites by attempting Miriam's song in the original Hebrew would definitely grab my former bosses!

    If the choir is going to have a monopoly on flashlights, what poetry does the congregation really need beyond spoken words and choral singing? Should they demand participation in the Lessons, arranged as liturgical dramas?
  • Jani
    Posts: 386
    I wish that picture was an April Fool's joke. It'll give me nightmares.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    BUT HE'S SO CUDDLY!


    RMix:
    I'm not sure what your beef is. If you disagree with my opinion, that's Totes McCool and all. I feel like you're getting defensive or something, which I don't really understand.

    Perhaps you find my liturgical thinking a bit corny? That's probably fair.

    At any rate, I certainly didn't mean to attack you or your program. Iwas just trying to express my thoughts on the matter in general terms.
  • kenstb
    Posts: 358
    This thread has actually spun far off topic. That photo was horrible.
    Adam, I truly liked your essay. I hope you won't mind if I send it to my singers.
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    francis, (assuming genunie curiosity) those are likely hard silicone half-spheres "surgically" implanted by tattooists, or somesuch body alteration practicioners. I was mildly surprised that our depicted baritone (were he a tenor, he would have sported elongated earlobes with grand inserts there!) didn't display his surgically forked tongue. Perhaps the local authorities in Cody don't cotten to open mouthed mug shots. I'm sure his profile pic in the parish yearbook proudly displays that lovely feature, in which he proudly proclaims the split tongue aids in the production of tonal overtones when he throat sings the verses of the responsorial. (He's not a traddie, yet, he doesn't know that overtones would sound cool when chanting the gradual or tract verses!) I can't place the insignias, but I have two theories: 1. they're like travel stickers on a suitcase of places he's visited: Amsterdam, Liverpool, various Russian penal institutions, Madison and Berkeley or such; or 2. they're emblems he found in a magazine that supposedly are runic sayings of the Nephrilim, or the fallen angelic giant stone angel watchers that had Noah's back when under attack by angry hordes who thought they had passage on the Ark after having endured a bummer cruise breadown with Carnival Cruises!
    I know I shouldn't judge, but he doesn't look like a candidate for our schola here, but he would fit in nicely with our Ensemble, if he sang tenor, which he doesn't.
    Has anyone checked the video footage carefully from the LAREC Fusion Mass? He might have also been in charge of the Ministry of Sound EFX with the sirens and honking car horns and such....
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    Adam, I truly liked your essay. I hope you won't mind if I send it to my singers.


    Honored. Please feel free.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,847
    Adam, it's just that I've become so used to hearing the word "concertizing" in a certain tone of voice that it's a red cloth for me (particularly in this thread's context); your essay doesn't come across as whiney. It does express a certain ambivalence which makes me take the "unfinished" label at face value, so please excuse any undue roughness in my prodding.
    This thread has actually spun far off topic.

    With rue I have to admit the picture is probably more to the point of the original query than the Easter Vigil digression!
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,304
    Thanks.

    Yeah - I have no issue with concert-quality music, and I think a lot of the people who complain about concertizing are just "contemporary music" people who want to turn Mass into a whole different kind of concert.

    I also don't have an issue with non-congregational music.

    My issue is really just about the nature and structure of the liturgy. A close analogy: Chanting the Introit or singing a congregational "Entrance Hymn" are both 'valid options.' But besides issues of which is "preferred," there's no question (I think) that they work differently and change the nature of what the beginning of Mass is and is about.

    Even within my own mental framework for this, the line between singing "authentic" Psalm responses and doing "lessons and carols" is sketchy at best.

    But I've been to places (Episcopal, but still) where they have sung the most ridiculous things (Go Down Moses; Dry Bones) which are way over on the "Holy crap what were you even thinking?" scale.

    (In fact, that unfinished essay began as an email to some people with whom I was supposedly planning joint-parish services, and was motivated by the TOTAL INSANITY which I have both witnessed and been informed of. After the last 'What hymn from the hymnal should we sing after Genesis?" email I decided I didn't care anymore what not-my-church wants to do and will just sing or flap my arms as requested.)

    What would I do in a parish (Catholic or Anglican) were I to have control?
    The full text of the appointed Psalms, chanted in one way or another.

    But how would I feel about Psalm-based Palestrina as a congregant?
    All in.
    Thanked by 1barreltone
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,113

    There are concerts, hymn fests, hootenannies, operas, sing-offs, fireside singalongs ... and then there is singing Mass.
  • PaixGioiaAmorPaixGioiaAmor
    Posts: 1,473
    Sometimes talking about "turning the mass into a concert" is code; sometimes it means what it says.

    I don't think that replacing Psalm 42 with Sicut Cervus is necessarily bad. I would avoid doing it with every single Psalm. Maybe do it for one or two and chant the rest with a refrain. And if people don't respond enthusiastically, oh well.
    Thanked by 2BruceL CHGiffen