ELOW YOU WILL FIND three common myths about hymns—as well as the correct answers! This is part of a larger project being undertaken by SOPHIA INSTITUTE PRESS which concerns positive steps to restore authentic Catholic music at the parish level. When you read the “answers” below, please let me know whether you discover anything that needs correction. Thank you!
Covid Devastation: We were not allowed to rehearse for 14 months due to Covid-19. Our volunteer choir—in which 80% had no prior musical training—has been trying to make up for lost time. We recently learned this Gospel Acclamation, which can be used in the Ordinary Form or the Extraordinary Form. Here’s a live recording from last Sunday:
The Value of Hymnody: In an effort to get the singers to “hear one another”—and thereby tune harmoniously—we have been learning hymns from the Brébeuf hymnal in SATB. Due to time constraints, we never get to rehearse these hymns properly; but I hope that if we just keep singing them they will improve. On 12 September 2021, we sang an ancient hymn to our lady, since that is traditionally the feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary.
* PDF Download • HILDERSTONE HYMN
—Latin version of Hymn #396 in the John Brébeuf Hymnal.
Three Myths about Catholic Hymns:
Q. I recently attended a liturgical
conference where the speaker said
hymns don’t belong at Mass…
Q. Is it true that Catholics “stole”
the idea of singing hymns from
Q. My Protestant friend says
Catholics are wrong to omit
verses when singing hymns…
Vernacular Hymns During Mass: Since 2013 we have often spoken about the perplexing practice of singing vernacular hymns all through Low Mass: even during the Gospel; even during the Canon; even singing the Lord’s Prayer in English while the priest says it in Latin; even during the Creed; and so forth. In my humble opinion, that’s an absurd way to assist at Mass. On the other hand, this was a common practice in the United States before Vatican II—and we have scanned and uploaded numerous books which prove this beyond all doubt. But just because something happened, that doesn’t make it right. I am someone who believes we must be aware of what went on in the past, even if we don’t agree with it.