Archive for the ‘Catholic Entertainment’ Category

We Are Called To Be Sentinels Of Love

As you might know, I’m a city boy. I grew up in Northern Jersey in what was really a suburb of New York City. So, I don’t know a whole lot about life in the country. Still I heard something about the country that I believe is true. I heard that when crows are descending on a crop, say […]

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The Choral Year- Onward!

For many of us, the choral year is about to start again.  To all the directors, accompanists, and singers,  here’s wishing everyone a year of musical growth and rich spiritual rewards of our hearts’ desire.  Thanks to those who, week aft…

Suffering For The Sake Of His Body

Always there is a connection between the first readings and the gospel accounts that the Church presents to us in the major celebrations of the Church’s liturgical year. Such is the case we find in the scripture passages (Jeremiah 20:7-9; Romans 12:1-2; Matthew 16:21-27) for the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time and so I begin […]

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Just what is the new evangelization, anyway? (Where is it going, this nouvelle évangélisation?)

I’m sitting at my desk before beginning the day’s work, looking out the window and watching a man in a suit who is reading the flyer I put on the door of our meeting rooms building. This happens all day long. It’s a regular sheet of white typing paper …

Let the Rumor Mills Begin

This morning the Holy Father appointed the former Prefect for the Congregation for Divine Worship to a cardinalate see in his home country of Spain.Personally I would be happy to see the Congregation’s Secretary, Archbishop Arthur Roche, take the Congr…

Lessons From Ferguson

The tragic events in Ferguson, Missouri in August 2014 illustrate clearly how belief shapes people’s judgments and reactions. The initial report contained little more than the fact that a white police officer had shot and killed Michael Brown, an 18-year-old black high school graduate soon to enter college. But for many people that was enough […]

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New Women’s Schola in DC

As the Saint Luke ordinariate community moves to downtown Washington DC next month, a new initiative is beginning, to build on our existing tradition of Sacred Music. Named in honor of Saint Benedict and the Benedictine tradition of Gregorian chant, an…

Whistling Into the Wind? OCP responds.

As I’ve spent time offering two articles about whether the “grass roots” of RotR folk/CMAA/Progressive Conservationists (should I copyright that? ) could actually influence via direct dialogue with the “Liturgical Industrial Complex” of publishing companies, I feel obliged to share also the reply I received yesterday from an officer at OCP with the readership. I realize my second article, an attempt to provide a sort of template for others who might wish to also personally get involved in helping the Big Three (and others) towards paradigm shift, was a source of misunderstanding and mockery to some. It was not intended as such. But for the record, we should know the effect and result of such efforts. This is the letter I received from OCP:

Thank you for your email. Please allow me to reply at the request of John Limb. I am the Manager of Worship Publications; I oversee the publication process for our pew resources.

We appreciate your feedback on specific songs in our Breaking Bread and Music Issue publications. This comes at a propitious time as we are in the midst, as I think you know, of receiving input from our missal subscribers via the annual Music Issue Survey. We take this input very seriously. We read every survey and carefully note all specific song suggestions (whether additions or deletions). These titles are gathered and shared with our music selection committee, which reviews them before making recommendations for the contents of the following year’s missals. Even if a song is suggested only once by one subscriber, it is included on the list. Please know that the songs you suggested for removal here will be included on that list as well.

As you can imagine, it is challenging to produce a single-volume sacred music resource that meets the needs and satisfies the expectations of every subscribing parish in the country. The needs and expectations vary widely. Our goal is produce an annual resource that addresses the needs of most of the parishes we serve, knowing that not everyone will be entirely happy with the result. The music selection committee works hard every year to add and remove songs, with much debate and careful consideration of many factors.

We understand the importance of chant and have striven for many years now to include it in our publications. We also, as you know, offer specific publications that offer chant options together in single volumes. There is, of course, Laus Tibi, Christe, with more than 70 chant settings. The most recent example is the St. Meinrad antiphonary. These books are designed to be used in conjunction with our various missal and hymnal programs. In fact, our hymnals include a plastic pocket in the back cover to accommodate these supplemental publications. This provides a means for parishes to access additional music that better addresses their specific needs. It’s not an ideal solution, but it’s the best compromise under the circumstances.

I note that the 2014 edition of Breaking Bread includes more than 45 chant pieces and Latin hymns. We continue to consider chant pieces for inclusion in our missals and have added several in recent years. That said, I will also forward to our committee your suggestion that we increase the number of Latin chant pieces. (emphasis mine)

Thank you again for taking the time to contact us and for using our publications these many years. God bless you in your ministry!


Wade Wisler

Worship Publications Manager

Well, my friends, what think ye?

O Salutaris Hostia by Peter Kwasniewski

Peter Kwasniewski’s setting of the devotional Eucharistic hymn, O SALUTARIS HOSTIA (from “Sacred Choral Works ©2014, Corpus Christi Watershed), serves very well for all levels of SATB choir proficiency and is a compact gem that is appropriate for virtually any Mass. This setting should be of particular interest to smaller and novice SATB Choirs and directors, perhaps in concert with those whose initial forays into four parts also use Richard Rice’s “Simple Choral Gradual ” (CMAA)  as pedagogical bridges to more sophisticated and complex pieces.

A memorable melody in the soprano voice, along with solid voice leading and intuitively easy interval leaps in the other voices, some of which have brief moments of “spice” in the chordal treatment make the argument for the accessibility of this piece. The first system is a purely diatonic and “sweet” exposition of the melody with a solid counterpoint in the bass. At the end of the second phrase, “pandis ostium (to us below)” Kwasniewski employs ascending parallel thirds in the trebles as if we were through that comforting harmony reaching up to receive, but he adds flavor on the third beat “-sti-“, by contrasting an established V chord cadence with a Vsus7 cluster. Just a taste. In the next phrase the altos and basses have a sort of voice exchange contrapuntal movement that is also sweet tension that resolves deceptively for the moment to the relative minor with an added 7th.  This sets up a nice melodic sequence in the soprano voice bridging two text phrases, “Bella premunt hostilia, Da robur, fer auxilium.” Kwasniewski deploys another “flavor” moment when he chooses to use I Major 7 on beat three of m.14 in the tenor voice leading, when he could have opted for vi7 as the relative minor is being established by the stanza cadence with the dominant 7th of vi leading to the da capo.

When reaching that same penultimate cadence, his “amen” is a sublime cascade from soprano descending scale motion through the alto into the tenor to the Picardy third major chord of what was the relative minor.

This is a lovely piece of purpose, clarity with enough little flavor gems to keep choral interest. We will shortly post a sound link featuring the incredible Matthew Curtis.

Washington Post: "Christopher Candela dispels the notion that all organ music sounds the same."

Together, these M.P. Möller organs (dedicated in 1965 and updated in 2001) house 9,393 pipes ranging from a 64-footer to one foot, four keyboards and 157 stops, each providing a specific sound. Candela took full advantage of these far-reaching sonic resources, playing works from different eras by Naji Hakim, Richard K. Fitzgerald, J.S. Bach (two wondrous chorale preludes), Jean Langlais and Marcel Dupré. Hakim’s exciting “The Embrace of Fire” thrashed about with conflicting and echoing layers of sonorities. But most of Sunday’s music was based on ancient church hymns.

 Full review here.

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