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Ordained in 2011, Father Friel served for five years as Parochial Vicar at St. Anselm Parish in Northeast Philly. He is currently studying toward an STL in sacred liturgy at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
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“In spite of what it is currently called, the music of these songs is not modem: this musical style is not new, but has been played in the most profane places and surroundings (cabarets, music halls, often for more or less lascivious dances with foreign names). The people are led on to rock or swing. They all feel an urge to dance about. That sort of “body language” is certainly alien to our Western culture, unfavorable to contemplation and its origins are rather suspect. Most of the time our congregations, which already find it hard not to confuse the crochets and the quavers in a 6/8 bar, do not respect the rhythm; then one no longer feels like dancing, but with the rhythm gone to pieces, the habitual poorness of the melodic line becomes all the more noticeable.”
— Unnamed choirmaster (Northern France) circa 1986

Repetition in the Roman Missal
published 14 February 2016 by Fr. David Friel

T IS NO SECRET that I am an enthusiastic fan of the 2011 translation of the Roman Missal in English. It is not perfect, to be sure, but it is such an enormous improvement over the former Sacramentary that it warrants ongoing celebration.

One of the things I appreciate most about the new translation is the inclusion of some of the repetitions that are found in the Latin original. These repeated words and phrases were, it seems, not valued by those who crafted the 1970 Sacramentary. Their return is a wonderful thing, and I believe there is something particularly prayerful about them. (I have posted about the value of these repetitions once before).

Beyond the spiritual & liturgical value of repetition, one can also argue that repetition holds great literary significance. Christopher Carstens has made this very argument in a recent article in Adoremus Bulletin:

“All the fun’s in how you say a thing”—Repetition in the Roman Missal, by Christopher Carstens (Vol. XXL, No. 5 – January 2016, pages 4-5)

Carstens, who serves as Editor of Adoremus Bulletin, defines and points out liturgical occurances of such wonderful literary tools as anaphora, symploce, diacope, anadiplosis, palindrome, epanados, and chiasmus.

Not sure what some of those devices are? Neither was I. The article is well worth a read for any lover of the English language.