Author Archive

Women in the Liturgy; Women in the Church

One of the problems in dealing with underprivileged groups is that it’s pretty hard to say anything that doesn’t strike a chord of sensitivity. The valuing of the gifts of women in the Church is one of these third-rail issues that no man can handle qui…

Singing the GIRM

One of the many ephemeral phases of liturgical music theory during the second half of the 20th century–phases that flowed in on one another’s ebbs like waves upon the shore–was the one that a friend calls “Singing the GIRM.”Under this parad…

Something for next year

See Amid the Winter’s Snow

This beautiful and gentle Christmas hymn was written by the convert to Catholicism Edward Caswall, better know to many as the translator of hymns such as Pange Lingua Gloriosi, O Salutaris Hostia, Quicunque certum quaertis, and the Stabat Mater Doloros…

Giving Liturgically

With just a few days left in the tax year, I thought I would mention some liturgical giving opportunities for those interested in making some last-minute donations.The Church Music Association of America, through its scholarly journal, enormous bank of…

A New Song to the Lord

Here is one relatively new (c. 2005) hymn and two very old hymns with fresh translations, to round out your Christmas season.

Please feel free to use the translations freely this year. The Holy Family hymn may be used with the purchase of this collection.

A Solis Ortus Cardine
Christmastide Lauds

From east, where sunrise has its birth,
Across to western rims of earth,
Unto the Virgin-born they ring:
The Church’s songs to Christ, the King.

For He, the Lord of  ages blest
Is in a servile body dressed,
That flesh by flesh might be set free
that what he made to be would be.

The Mother’s inmost hidden place
is virginally reached by grace.
Within her virgin womb there grows
a secret that nobody knows

This chaste heart’s home has suddenly
The Lord’s own temple come to be.
Unknown by man, and not undone,
a word made her conceive the Son.

The One the Blessed Mother bore,
Whom Gabriel made known before,
And Who, when hearing Mary’s voice,
before he saw Him, John rejoiced,

He let Himself be laid in hay;
He willed the manger where he lay;
and He who keeps the birds replete
has just a little milk to eat.

The chorus of the stars and skies
and angels sing with joyful cries:
to shepherds is their Maker shown,
and as a Shepherd he is known.

O Jesus, Virgin-born, to You
be glory as is ever due
whom with the Father we adore
and Spirit blest forevermore.


  Within the quiet of a home — Kathleen Pluth

1. Within the quiet of a home
 Let no one but the angels come,
 Or travelers in their distress,
 Or friends in holy righteousness.
 Let every fam’ly live in peace
 And let the grace of God increase.


2. O Jesus, born on Christmas night,
 The Son of Mary, heaven’s Light,
 Give us the grace we need each day
 To follow in Your Father’s way:
 The heav’nly Father, quick to bless,
 Whose ev’ry act is faithfulness.

3. Then Father, bless each family
 With faith and hope and charity,
 That we may find our perfect Good
 Whose bed was only hay and wood.
 Saint Joseph, help all families stay
 With Him you sheltered Christmas day.

 Copyright © 2005 CanticaNOVA Publications. Duplication restricted.
Meter: D Suggested tune: Sussex Carol, or others:
 Angel’s Song Neumark (alt) Saint Petersburg
 Melita Saint Catherine Stella

A Patre Unigenite
Baptism Vespers


The one-begotten, Father’s Son,
Who through the Virgin towards us run,
Who consecrate us with Your dew:
Your baptism has made us new.

From highest heaven You proceed.
To take our nature You agreed,
Redeeming all created things,
And joy of life in fullness springs.

We ask, Redeemer, grace bestow:
And let Yourself into us flow.
May our most inward hearts be bright
With Your clear deifying light.


O Lord, with us, your servants, stay,
And cast the dark of night away,
And every sin of ours erase,
And bless us with your healing grace

O Christ, the Life, the Truth, to You
Be glory as is ever due,
Whose Father and blest Spirit show
Your splendor high to us below.

Ushers and Blushers

This Christmas Eve, once again there will be many people coming to Mass who are currently outside of Catholic practice for one reason or another.Most people are aware of Catholic sacramental discipline and wish to observe it.But in many parishes, usher…

The Dies Irae

Msgr. Charles Pope takes on the great hymn–of Advent.

"Righteously made"

Planted like seeds, our bodies wait the sound:
The angel’s final trumpet shakes the ground,
And saints who died in Christ with life are crowned.
Alleluia, alleluia.
The human person, made of breath and earth,
Lives for that day: the harvest morning’s mirth,
When bodies rise to share the souls’ rebirth.
Alleluia, alleluia.
But Mary never knew these waiting days.
At this life’s close, in mysteries of grace,
Her soul and body to the heav’ns were raised.
Alleluia, alleluia.
For Christ redeemed her body and her soul.
Righteously made, unseparated whole,
Her first beginnings mastering the goal,
Alleluia, alleluia.
And so the reaper passes those who sow.
Blade, ear and fruit inestimably grow.
The harvest grain-bins fill and overflow.
Alleluia, alleluia.
Copyright © 2005 CanticaNOVA Publications. Duplication restricted.
Meter: 10.10.10 with alleluia Suggested tune: Sine nomine, or others:

A Dominican Ave Maria

On this Vigil of Our Lady’s great feast, I wanted to draw our readers’ attention to an exciting new album by the Dominican Friars in Washington DC, called Ave Maria: Dominican Chant for the Immaculate Conception.This is a …

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