GR Alleluia in OF
  • VilyanorVilyanor
    Posts: 388
    For anyone out there who uses the Alleluias from the GR in the OF, or has seen them used, (even with psalm tone verse) how does it work? Seeing as how it's considerably longer than the triple simplex style Alleluias, does the deacon/priest rise somewhat later?
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,912
    I've not seen this done, but I would imagine something like that would happen: the priest or deacon would probably rise later, although the cue for beginning the Alleluia in the OF is the rising of the priest or deacon to move to the ambo to proclaim the Gospel; it would likely have to change if the GR Alleluia was sung. If incense was used, the Alleluia could begin when the thurifer comes to the priest, but that might still not give you enough time, unless the priest is willing to wait at the ambo. I imagine this is why GR Alleluias are not generally sung in the OF: the priest doesn't want to wait for it to finish (that and they are hardly congregational, but don't get me started on that).
    Thanked by 1Vilyanor
  • BenBen
    Posts: 3,114
    I would do it no differently than the EF:

    The priest is sitting, and well trained MC pays attention, and when the time is right, somewhere in the middle of the verse, the MC will signal to the priest, and he'll prepare the incense, and process to the location where the gospel is proclaimed. Depending on the attentiveness of the MC, hopefully sometime around the time the movement stops, the alleluia will end. Problem solved.
  • I have used The Correct Alleluyas at St Basil's, UST, Houston, on many occasions, such as solemnities when St B's schola sing for a completely sung OF mass in English. From the priest's chair to the ambo-lectern is about 25 feet. Ordinarily I will ask the priest to begin the procession to the ambo at about half-way through the verse. This comes out just about right. I should note that we sing the Gregorian verse as well as the Alleluya responsory. One cannot imagine a much more sublime spiritual preparation for the proclamation of the Holy Gospel. My schola sang for the vigil of this just-past Trinity (with Fr Hough, from Walsingham, celebrating), and on this occasion we, for the first time, sang the verse to polyphony a la Lassus for two equal voices (which I wrote). This, too was awfully nice and spiritually effective.

    For a briefer answer - yes. I think that the gospel procession should wait until about half way through the verse. If all is done with appropriate liturgical gravitas, this should bring it to the ambo somewhere in the middle of the repeat of the alleluia responsory.

    (And, since we are on the subject, I cannot pass up the temptation, yet again, to castigate and rake over hot burning coals the habit of singing three trite little alleluyas (even those in the GS) instead of an alleluia that really does justice to the alleluya at mass (and, unlike the little triple ones, was intended for mass). The office, from where these are borrowed is an entirely different thing. [And, if someone wants to castigate me for saying all this again, let them do so. There are greater scholars than I who would agree with me on this without reservation.].)

    For encouragement one should note that there are at least half a dozen Mass Alleluyas, such as the one for Advent I, that could be mastered easily by a congregation with a sane attitude in a month's time. They would come to own it an love singing it. These are joyous ejaculations of praise.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 3,409
    If the PIPs sing, then presumably they stand to do so. If we do not sing, when should we rise? At Westminster, if I remember correctly, when a deacon is proclaiming the Gospel, the celebrant rises when the deacon lifts the book of the Gospel from the altar, and the people (mostly) rise with him.
  • The congregation rise (enthusiastically! and automatically!) the moment Alleluya is intoned. This is a liturgical, ritual, given, whether they (choose to) sing or not. I might add that the congregation do an appreciable job of following the Gregorian alleluya when we offer it. If it were offered every Sunday they would own it within a month - and be delighted that they had learnt it. Attitude. Attitude. Attitude is everything! With a healthy attitude any thing can be accomplished. (Including by Catholics!)
  • cdruiz
    Posts: 26
    The key is to encourage the pastor to always use incense, or to do so on a more regular basis. At our parish, the regular choir always waits until after incense has been imposed and the Priest or Deacon stands up, before starting the "ordinary" triple Alleluia. Consequently, our parishioners are used to standing when the priest stands and not before, even though much action pertaining to the Gospel Procession had taken place. The whole action, from the moment the Thurifer and Candlebearers begin their procession to the Sedilia, to when the priest arrives at the ambo, has been timed at one minute and thirty seconds (1:30). This reflects servers that walk a slightly nervous faster than ideal pace.

    So, on the occasions that our schola has had the privilege of chanting the Gregorian Alleluia, I have begged the servers to do the following:
    1. Do not begin walking to the Sedilia until after you hear "Alleluia," sung a second time. This is the hardest because they get used to beginning in silence.
    2. Walk slowly, just like we have practiced over and over again, and heard me remind you week after week (I have the privilege of training them). This one is hard because even after they get used to walking slowly, because of #1 above they cannot help but feel that they are "behind" schedule because the Alleluia has already started.

    Given the difficulty of points 1 and 2 above, we try to stick as close as we can to the 1:30. That is why for the Feast of the Assumption, we will be chanting the Gregorian Alleluia in the following manner. Chant the Alleluia WITHOUT the Melisma, three times. Then chant the full verse in all its Gregorian melody glory and built in melisma (though in English), then the Alleluia three times, again WITHOUT the Melisma. This will cut the two minute chant, to one minute and forty seconds (1:40). Ten (10) seconds of waiting is not too bad, but thirty (30) seconds would feel like an eternity. Added bonus, familiarity of triple Alleluia for everyone else involved.

    After the Gospel, we will chant the Alleluia one last time, but this time with the melisma.

  • BenBen
    Posts: 3,114
    If the PIPs sing, then presumably they stand to do so. If we do not sing, when should we rise? At Westminster, if I remember correctly, when a deacon is proclaiming the Gospel, the celebrant rises when the deacon lifts the book of the Gospel from the altar, and the people (mostly) rise with him.


    At least in the extraordinary form, most people rise as the Gospel begins. I wouldn't see a problem with that, considering the meditative aspect of the gregorian alleluia.

    Also, don't forget that as Prof. Mahrt points out in his book, the alleluia is much longer than is functionally needed to cover the action, so there's clearly something more there. It's an action unto itself, which is intended to foster meditation. Yeah, there will be occasional waiting. Just like there's "waiting" during the gloria, or "waiting" during the sanctus (in the OF). That's kinda the point.
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 2,068
    It’s convenient that the Gradual and Alleluia are usually plenty long enough to cover the priest doubling the readings, Ben.
    Thanked by 1Adam Wood
  • Steve CollinsSteve Collins
    Posts: 1,021
    IMO the people should just sit - sing if they like, if the must, or just listen, like at the EF Mass. Then it doesn't matter what music is used. Here's the point: exactly WHAT is it we stand for? We stand to hear the Word of God, proclaimed by an ordained minister - bishop, priest, or at the very least deacon. So, if the reading of the Gospel is the proclamation, then the priest/deacons salutary sentences should be the acclamation. Whether the choir/cantor sings the GR "Alleluia" verse or the modern "Gospel Acclamation", neither is the "Word of God" like the actual Gospel is, nor are the choir/cantor ordained to be reading citations from the Gospel. Indeed, there is confusion at morning and evening prayer when people rise for a MEDITATIVE reading from a Gospel. Standing too early for the Gospel is a liturgical mistake. It has done nothing but elevate the musicians to clerical status and confuse the congregation.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 3,409
    Pretty good timing there. Of course, that's not a typical Sunday congregation, hence the dribs and drabs of standing. Note that the sanctuary has been re-reordered since then, they shifted the high altar a few inches, and now use it (usually facing the people), the excrescence has gone.