HE FRENCH refer to Catholic priests as R.P. which stands for “Révérend Père.” However, the following booklet—which is extremely rare—was published by a man named “René Paris,” who abbreviates his name as R.P. (This is doubly confusing because many French books, needless to say, were published in the city of Paris.) Monsieur René Paris published a 326-page book of Gregorian Chant written on five-line staves. I think we can assume there must have been a need for such a booklet, otherwise he would not have gone to the trouble of creating it!
Gift To You • Corpus Christi Watershed has obtained this book and had it professionally scanned as a gift to our readers. As I have mentioned before, when plainsong is written on 5 lines, it’s very handy to accompany on the pipe organ:
* PDF Download • MANUEL DES PROCESSIONS (326 pages)
—Manuel des Processions et Bénédictions du Très Saint Sacrement (René Paris, 1920).
Because it was professionally scanned, it’s an incredibly small file (18MB), which readers will undoubtedly appreciate.
Púer Nátus in Béthlehem • The book is particularly rich in Christmas songs. Here is one of my favorites: “Púer Nátus in Béthlehem.” Can you resist harmonizing this one?
“Ave Rex Noster” • The book contains many pieces I’m not familiar with, such as “Áve Rex Nóster” for the Sacred Heart of Jesus:
“Sálve Regína” • This collection by René Paris is chock-full of Marian pieces, and here’s another one I bet you can’t resist harmonizing:
Saint Joan of Arc • The book has plainsong for “rare” saints such as Joan of Arc and Margaret Mary. I believe those saints are particularly honored in France: