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When you consider that the greatest hymns ever written—the plainchant hymns—are pushing the age of eight hundred and that the noble chorale hymn tunes of Bach date from the early eighteenth century, then what is the significance of the word “old” applied to “Mother at Thy Feet Is Kneeling”? Most of the old St. Basil hymns date from the Victorian era, particularly the 1870s and 1880s.
— Paul Hume (1956)

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The St. Jean de Brébeuf Hymnal (2018)
published 5 October 2018 by Jeff Ostrowski

85983-cover-Brebeuf-release-002 sm HE MOST CATHOLIC hymnal to appear in seventy years was sent to the printer in October of 2018. Experts from across the globe (both priests and laity) worked diligently for five years to produce a hymnal based upon excellence: excellent texts, excellent tunes, and excellent translations. 1 This pew book does not “build upon” or mimic Protestant hymnals; instead, authentic Catholic hymnody forms its core. 2 The English translations by priests and bishops are breathtaking, especially those of Fr. John Fitzpatrick.

Pre-Order your copy today (via Seattle Books):

    *  Order a single copy •  Brébeuf Hymnal  [ 932 pages ]

The hymnals will begin shipping on 28 December 2018.

BULK DISCOUNT: Those who order 100+ copies can do so for just $28.00 per book!  Send an email to liturgical.institute@gmail.com with “bulk discount” in your subject line.


The sensational melodies found in the Brébeuf Hymnal have been described as “simple, memorable, and hauntingly beautiful”—composed by such artists as Flor Peeters, Kevin Allen, Richard Clark, Peter LeJeune, Alfred Calabrese, and more.

Singable tunes have been painstakingly shared amongst various texts, recognizing that too many Catholic congregations know just a handful of hymns really well—and no effort has been spared in this regard. 3

Rehearsal Videos

In conjunction with the JP2 institute, Watershed will be providing hundreds of rehearsal videos for this hymnal…absolutely free of charge!

Some examples:

Hymn #006   •   Equal Voices   |   SOPRALTOTENRBASS

Hymn #259   •   Equal Voices   |   SOPRALTOTENRBASS

Hymn #376   •   Equal Voices   |   SOPRALTOTENRBASS

Hymn #446   •   Equal Voices   |   SOPRALTOTENRBASS

Hymn #712   •   Equal Voices   |   SOPRALTOTENRBASS

Hymn #868   •   Equal Voices   |   SOPRALTOTENRBASS

Hymn #876   •   Equal Voices   |   SOPRALTOTENRBASS

Catholic Texts & Translations

In addition to sublime melodies, the Brébeuf Hymnal also contains magnificent texts by contemporary Catholic priests such as Fr. Christopher Phillips, Fr. Dominic Popplewell, and Fr. Dylan Schrader. At the same time, this book preserves the very best from the past, especially gems found in such publications as the New Westminster Hymnal (1939), Mediator Dei Hymnal (1955), London Oratory Hymn Book (1998), and Theodore Marier’s famous 1983 hymnal. Moreover, you will discover superb texts—written in metrical English and set to gloriously singable tunes—by Saint Thomas More, Saint Philip Howard, and Saint Robert Southwell.

The Brébeuf Hymnal is the only source containing literal translations (as well as rhyming translations set to music) of certain rare hymns, such as Non Abluunt Lymphae Deum, Rebus Creatis Nil Egens, Rex Sempiterne Domine, Salve Caput Cruentatum, Sancti Venite, Victis Sibi Cognomina, Agnoscat Omne Saeculum, Hoste Dum Victo Triumphans, Jam Desinant Suspiria, and Ave Vivens Hostia (complete). This allows congregations to better understand the genius of Catholic poets who created these singable translations.

The fantastic organ accompaniment book (and choral version)—using a technique you will love—is scheduled to appear in January of 2019.

Exclusive photographs of the draft pages are available here.



NOTES FROM THIS ARTICLE:

1   Those who have seen advance copies say it’s absolutely unique in every way. It was produced by the JP2 institute with assistance from members of Corpus Christi Watershed. Jeffrey Ostrowski was chosen to lead the editorial team. Some of the source material collected by the production team can be downloaded here. The physical books are being produced by the same company that prints books for IGNATIUS PRESS: Thomson-Shore/Seattle Books.

2   We did include a few texts—e.g. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing—written by Protestant authors; but such texts constitute a tiny, inconsequential percentage.

3   The Brébeuf Hymnal was created by and for choirmasters and priests working in real parishes across the globe; it is the antithesis of a theoretical exercise.