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.
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“To me nothing is so consoling, so piercing, so thrilling, so overcoming, as the Mass, said as it is among us. I could attend Masses for ever, and not be tired.”
— John Henry Cardinal Newman (1848)

The Only Hymn Father Fortescue Ever Wrote
published 24 November 2018 by Jeff Ostrowski

HE BRÉBEUF HYMNAL is finally available for purchase, after five years of painstaking production. The hymnal came out a million times better than any of us could have hoped. We began the project with a “no garbage” policy; we would only accept excellent texts, excellent tunes, and excellent translations. We never broke this policy, and the resulting hymnal—932 pages long!—is absolutely breathtaking.

The Church’s oldest known Latin Eucharistic Hymn is “Sancti Venite,” from the 7th century. Father Adrian Fortescue wrote a translation in 1913…matching the original meter! The Brébeuf Hymnal contains multiple settings. Consider this contemporary melody by Peter Lejeune:

As far as I know, that is the only rhyming hymn Fortescue ever wrote.

THAT IS JUST ONE SETTING, OF COURSE. The Brébeuf Hymal contains several more, as well as additional translations. Moreover, the Brébeuf provides a literal translation—which it does for all the major Latin hymns. Ours is the only source containing literal English translations for certain hymns, such as Jam Desinant Suspiria and Rebus Creatis Nil Egens—how cool is that?

Those of us who participated in editorial work received “proof” copies, printed on loose-leaf paper. Here’s a sneak peek:

87052 - Fr Adrian Fortescue Hymn • SANCTI VENITE

By the way, you will notice that rehearsal videos are starting to appear.