Suggestions for Holy Thursday song during Presentation of the Oils?
  • 48 hours before Roman Catholic Holy Thursday I have been directed to provide a song during Presentation of the Oils.
    Forgive me (and please don't contribute "what should be") as I don't have free reign to select from traditional repertoire. I serve at a parish that is "a bit unusual." We have not had "sung" music in the past during Presentation of the Oils.

    I am directed that it must be a song published by Oregon Catholic Press, it has to be simple and quite brief, and it is quite possible the song will be "cut" from Mass at the last moment or omitted impromptu during Mass. (I know, I know, I can "hear" the groans. I wish it could be a beautiful chant or something from the St. Gregory Hymnal, but I don't have that freedom.)

    Thanks for any suggestions as I have not found this song topic in OCP's indexes or Liturgy Today music planner.


  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 1,223
    Maybe some sort of Taize piece?
  • You could say that your choir doesn't want to go to the trouble of learning something in 48 hours which they very well may not need after all.

  • Liam
    Posts: 4,374
    Given those strictures, new music that is specific to the holy oils is likely out of reach, and I would suggest a song that is likely familiar and appropriate for the liturgy overall: Where Charity and Love Prevail. Sung a cappella.
  • Thanks, Liam. In the details of this situation on short notice, your suggestion fits the bill.
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,374
    Ideally, no notable break within each couplet of lines (but keep the singing energy moving from first half to second half of each couplet), so it can be ... chanted. It flows, it's not a march.

    E.g. of the first two couplets:

    "Where charity and love prevail there God is ever found // Brought here together by Christ's love, by love are we thus bound."

    Energy moves from "-vail" [which can have a hint of extension] into "there", and from "love," [ditto] into "by".
  • Thanks, Liam. Your suggestion fits the bill...perfectly. Musically beautiful, it "enhances the Mass" and it's familiar.

    Now on to my next Holy Week last-minute-directive emergency! :-)
    Thanked by 1Liam
  • RPBurke
    Posts: 25
    Liam, that’s exactly how I have used that song, as a chant, and it works just fine.
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 8,048
    The Maundy Thursday liturgy at Walsingham may be seen at olwcatholic.org.
    Complete Palmer-Burgess propers, Byrd's Ave Verum, the people singing quite nicely the Sanctus & Agnus from the cum jubilo mass and Adoro te - all without organ.