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Why do we never sing “De Spiritu Sancto” (St. Athenogenes) in our churches? There are a dozen translations in English verse. Where could anyone find a better evening hymn than this, coming right down from the catacombs? Our hymnbooks know nothing of such a treasure as this, and give us pages of poor sentiment in doggerel lines by some tenth-rate modern versifier.
— Rev’d Adrian Fortescue (d. 1923)

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PDF Download • “Mass of the Alabaster Jar” (2016)
published 27 October 2016 by Guest Author
(Mt 26: 7-8) |There came to him a woman having an alabaster box of precious ointment, and poured it on his head as he was at table. And the disciples seeing it, had indignation, saying: To what purpose is this waste?


708 Magdalene Brandon HE MASS SETTINGS I have composed and offer freely—Mass of the Alabaster Jar and Mass in honor of St. Veronica—are colorful yet simple settings of the Ordinary prayers intended for use during Advent, Lent, and any other time in which they would help draw people into the nobility and simplicity of the liturgy. They were also written with a practical purpose in mind: to be as “user-friendly” as possible without compromising beauty and appeal.

Assembly sheets have been included toward the end of each file:

    * *  PDF “Mass of the Alabaster Jar” (2016)

    * *  PDF “Mass in Honor of St. Veronica” (2016)

I live in the “thumb” of Michigan and am quite familiar with the challenges faced by many rural parishes with regard to music. Many accompanists and singers lack formal musical training and therefore experience difficulty performing most Mass settings. The keyboard accompaniments for my Mass settings were written to be easily played by pianists and organists of an intermediate skill level. Indeed, they are accessible to anyone who can read music and play simple traditional hymns. The melodies fit the contour and meaning of the prayer texts and can be sung easily without accompaniment.

These Mass settings can also be downloaded from the Corpus Christi Watershed Mass Tome.


We hope you enjoyed this guest article by Brandon Byrne.


BRANDON BYRNE currently serves as Interim Music Director at St. Christopher Catholic Church in Marysville, MI, and is pursuing a Diploma of Music Ministry from Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. He lives in Michigan with his wife and two children.