I was very excited when the assistant choir director came into the sacristy before Mass today and told me we would be processing to the introit, followed by a short hymn, instead of singing the introit as a prelude, as is often done. I was excited because this is something that just doesn’t happen at my parish (until now). Not that we’re a bunch of chant haters or anything, it just doesn’t usually happen.
Then when Mass actually begun and they started singing, it just felt so… so… right (probably because it is right. The introit is the ideal music for the procession at the beginning of Mass…)
And since we sung most of the dialogs of the Mass (as we should), almost everyone caught on to the new responses after only the second week! Hmmm… maybe there’s more wisdom than we think in the church asking us to sing the dialogs of the Mass…
Here’s the music we had today at St. Patrick’s in Madison at 11:00 am Mass:
- Introit: Populus Síon, From the Graduale Romanum (cf. Isaiah 30: 19, 20)
- Hymn after the introit: Comfort, comfort, O My People (cf. Isaiah 40: 1-8)
- Offertory: 1) Comfort, ye, 2) Every Valley, and 3) And the Glory of the Lord (Isaiah 40: 1-5) from Messiah (Sung straight through without stopping, as it would be preformed)
- Communion: English adaption of Jerúsalem Surge (the proper communion chant for Advent II) (Bar 5: 5; 4: 36) (Verses from Psalm 147?)
If there’s any choir members reading this (and I think there is a few), I want to thank you. These small things mean more than you’ll know to many of us down here. It means so much to know I can go to Mass and hear almost all the texts the church gives us for the different parts of the Mass, and to hear scripture when the proper text isn’t used.
Keep it up, Cathedral Choir. Keep it up.
Next week… there’s some big happenings. A woman is being consecrated as a Consecrated Virgin for the Diocese of Madison.
It has the liturgical complexity of an ordination, and it’s a very interesting rite. I’m excited.