About this blogger:
A theorist, organist, and conductor, Jeff Ostrowski holds his B.M. in Music Theory from the University of Kansas (2004), and did graduate work in Musicology. He serves as choirmaster for the new FSSP parish in Los Angeles, where he resides with his wife and children.
Connect on Facebook:
Connect on Twitter:
The Vatican Gradual cheered our hearts by restoring the authentic form of the hymns therein. But there are very few hymns in the Gradual. We looked forward to the continuation of the same work, where it was so much more needed, in the Vesperal, and then in the new Breviary. Alas, the movement, for the present, has stopped. The new Vesperal and then the Breviary contain Urban VIII’s versions. So at present we have the odd situation that in the Gradual the old form of the hymns is restored; but when the same hymn (for instance “Vexilia regis”) comes again in the Vesperal, we must sing the seventeenth-century mangling.
— Adrian Fortescue (25 March 1916)

Why On Earth Would Anyone Do This?
published 2 July 2014 by Jeff Ostrowski

308 John 23 Y FRIENDS KNOW that I prefer Mass to be either entirely in Latin or entirely in English, for reasons having to do with aesthetics. However, I was involved with the production of the Jogues Illuminated Missal (for the Ordinary Form) which contains a lot of Latin.

Does that make me a hypocrite? No, for two reasons: one obvious, the other less obvious.

IRST, the obvious one. The Second Vatican Council ordered a mixture of Latin & Vernacular. The secretary of the Consilium (among many others) made this crystal clear in a succinct statement. Therefore, whether I personally believe Latin & English should be mixed is irrelevant: the Vatican Council has spoken.

You’ll want to read the words of Msgr. Overath about the verb “servetur” on page 18. By the way, on pages 22-24, Overath specifically cites statements by USA dioceses that are so flagrantly opposed to Vatican II they’ll knock you off your feet!

ECOND, the less obvious reason. Even if Latin is not used, it’s essential to at least provide the original Latin prayer, which goes back so many centuries. Consider this:

      * *  Sample Page (PDF) — taken from the Jogues Illuminated Missal

Did you notice how the Latin “grounds” us, even if the prayers are sung in English? After all, American Catholics have been subjected to so many different translations over the years it’s become confusing. The authentic Latin is essential, if only for reference purposes. Maybe that’s why the Vatican demanded that the official Latin always be printed alongside the English.