EFORE ANY WORK at all could begin on the Brébeuf hymnal, the team spent several years amassing an unparalleled collection of old Catholic hymnals. We believed it was essential to know what had been done in the past. Much of what we discovered was of a very low quality—one member of the committee (from another continent) called it “deplorable rubbish”—yet some of what we found was marvelous, and we placed it in the Brébeuf hymnal. Below is “Volume 1” of a collection published by the Bishop of Cleveland, Ohio. If readers find this interesting, I will try to post “Volume 2” as well.
* PDF Download • Diocesan Hymnal (84 Pages)
—Compiled in 1926 by the Most Rev. Joseph Schrembs, Bishop of Cleveland, Ohio.
Please Note: Just because we are sharing these old hymnals does not mean we endorse the music they contain. The Gregorian accompaniments are strange, even by 1926 standards:
By the way, I wonder when this “Our Father” on page 54 would have been sung. Since it was the 1920s, it was probably sung during Low Mass. Here is a page I find particularly interesting—remember this was 1926!
To download about sixty (60) extremely rare Catholic hymnals we have scanned into PDF, visit the Brébeuf website and scroll down to where it says “Source Material.”
HE OLDER I GET, the more I appreciate how wise it is to (frequently) keep silence. When I was younger, everything was fresh and new. I remember how excited I was to “expose” hypocrisy and errors. Wise mentors would simply look at me and smile; they admired the youthful energy, but human nature was nothing new to them! So they kept silence. These days, I observe such foolishness, cowardice, and hypocrisy. My inclination is to “expose” this nonsense—but it’s usually better to simply ignore it. Something that bothers me deeply is to observe Catholic bloggers and authors constantly claim they want to improve the liturgy—yet when they have an opportunity to help, they won’t lift a finger, because they’re too busy writing their 23rd article on Theodore McCarrick. Would it not be better to focus on positive things?
I believe the Brébeuf hymnal will eventually be recognized for what it is: a desperately needed resource, essential for any Catholic parish serious about the Faith. I use it for all four (4) Masses each Sunday, as well as Solemn Vespers (which we have each Sunday afternoon). The Brébeuf hymnal makes my life so easy! How I wish this resource had been available 20 years ago! Our congregation loves the melodies and texts. The singers literally weep when they sing these melodies, which is quite moving!
The Brébeuf hymnal is like an ever-widening vista; my parish could use this book for the next fifty years, yet barely scratch the surface.