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Author Topic: Worst Hymns Ever - a Catholic's lament  (Read 5763 times) Average Rating: 0
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jwinch2
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« Reply #45 on: April 07, 2013, 02:57:05 PM »

Some Catholic bishops are working to right the ship in this area, and so are the laity.

http://www.dioceseofmarquette.org/UserFiles/Bishop/PastoralLetter-RejoiceInTheLordAlways.pdf
http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/bishop-sample-transformed-by-the-liturgy-transforming-the-culture#When:2013-03-8%2009:47:01
http://www.ceciliaschola.org/notes/benedictonmusic.html#Silence
http://us6.campaign-archive1.com/?u=81d357824f841cad0851fb7cb&id=af635da6eb&e=7e3eeab6b5
http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/benedictine-monk-reverent-liturgy-helps-us-encounter-christ/
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mabsoota
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« Reply #46 on: April 07, 2013, 04:43:42 PM »

The problem is many of us were raised up on these hymns so to us they aren't horrible.  Not Veni Creator Spiritus but it is what we cut our teeth on, buried people singing, married people singing, baptised people singing.  I doubt they go away anytime soon.

did u mean to say this?!
if so, please ask liza symonenko to attend and take photos of the raising of the dead for us!
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sheenj
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« Reply #47 on: April 07, 2013, 05:29:24 PM »

The problem is many of us were raised up on these hymns so to us they aren't horrible.  Not Veni Creator Spiritus but it is what we cut our teeth on, buried people singing, married people singing, baptised people singing.  I doubt they go away anytime soon.

did u mean to say this?!
if so, please ask liza symonenko to attend and take photos of the raising of the dead for us!

The we was implied. I.E. [We] buried people singing, [we] married people singing, etc.
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Deep Roots
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« Reply #48 on: April 07, 2013, 06:15:41 PM »

We sang a re-worded version of leonard cohen's "hallelujah" at the end of mass today. (I was at a Catholic Church that I really like today.) It was great.
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Romaios
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« Reply #49 on: April 07, 2013, 08:44:04 PM »

We sang a re-worded version of leonard cohen's "hallelujah" at the end of mass today. (I was at a Catholic Church that I really like today.) It was great.

Where, o where are thine "deep" roots?

Quote
Abba Georgios, the presbyter of the Coenobium of the Scholars, told us that in that monastery there lived an elderly monk, of great standing as an ascetic, but he was naïve about the faith and would receive [communion] wherever he found [it], without discernment. One day an Angel of God appeared to him and said: “Tell me, old man, when you die, how do you want us to bury you? After the rite of the monks of Egypt or of those of Jerusalem?” The old man answered saying: “I do not know.” Whereupon the Angel said to him: "Think it over and I shall come in three weeks’ time and you will tell me.”

The old man went to see another Elder and told him what he heard from the Angel. When the Elder heard this, he was astonished. And looking at him for a long while, moved by God, he asked him: “Where do you partake of the Holy Mysteries?” He answered: “Wherever I find them.” (The Romanian version has: "Wherever I hear chanting.") Then the Elder told him: “Let it  never again occur to you  to receive communion outside of the Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church, where the four Holy Councils are named – that of Nicaea of the 318 [Fathers], Constantinople of the 150, the first of Ephesus of the 200 and Chalcedon of the 630 – and when the Angel comes, tell him that [you want to be buried] like those of Jerusalem.”

After three weeks the Angel came and asked him: “What will it be then, old man? Did you think about it?” The old man answered: “I want to be buried like those of Jerusalem!” The Angel told him: “Very well, very well!” And he gave up his soul immediately. All this happened, in order that the old man might not waste his efforts and be numbered with the heretics.

St. John Moschos, The Spiritual Meadow 178 (PG 87, 3048-9)
« Last Edit: April 07, 2013, 08:54:29 PM by Romaios » Logged
Deep Roots
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« Reply #50 on: April 07, 2013, 08:50:41 PM »

Ha
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Charles Martel
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« Reply #51 on: April 08, 2013, 11:59:58 AM »

Well, it can be argued that rock is dead.. Are you willing to post identifying information regarding the Church and mass you described?  Name, location, Diocese etc....
Interesting since the Church was built upon the "Rock", Petros himself.

At any rate I'd rather not publicly display any information for that Modernists, quasi-Protestant, "catholic" Glee Club over there they pass off as a RC "church". I you like PM and i'll give you it's website and you can see for yourself this N.O. abomination.
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Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio, contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium.
Charles Martel
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« Reply #52 on: April 08, 2013, 12:02:40 PM »

So this is what's left of the once so great Latin Church?
Ever since the Smoke of Satan began filtering in through a crack in it's foundation after VII, not much.
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Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio, contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium.
sheenj
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« Reply #53 on: April 08, 2013, 12:15:13 PM »

Interesting since the Church was built upon the "Rock", Petros himself.


So you say. The Church proclaims otherwise.
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Charles Martel
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« Reply #54 on: April 08, 2013, 12:18:43 PM »

Interesting since the Church was built upon the "Rock", Petros himself.


So you say. The Church proclaims otherwise.
I didn't say it, Christ did.
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Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio, contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium.
Jason.Wike
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« Reply #55 on: April 08, 2013, 12:54:40 PM »

Interesting since the Church was built upon the "Rock", Petros himself.


So you say. The Church proclaims otherwise.

The church proclaims a lot of things against Christ. "And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." isn't in your Bible?
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montalban
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« Reply #56 on: April 09, 2013, 07:25:42 AM »

Well, it can be argued that rock is dead.. Are you willing to post identifying information regarding the Church and mass you described?  Name, location, Diocese etc....
Interesting since the Church was built upon the "Rock", Petros himself.

At any rate I'd rather not publicly display any information for that Modernists, quasi-Protestant, "catholic" Glee Club over there they pass off as a RC "church". I you like PM and i'll give you it's website and you can see for yourself this N.O. abomination.

If you read that the church was built on the foundation of all the Apostles, with Jesus as the chief cornerstone it might bring it into proper context
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tha thu lan de na gràsan;
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« Reply #57 on: April 09, 2013, 08:12:20 AM »

Well, it can be argued that rock is dead.. Are you willing to post identifying information regarding the Church and mass you described?  Name, location, Diocese etc....
Interesting since the Church was built upon the "Rock", Petros himself.

At any rate I'd rather not publicly display any information for that Modernists, quasi-Protestant, "catholic" Glee Club over there they pass off as a RC "church". I you like PM and i'll give you it's website and you can see for yourself this N.O. abomination.

If you read that the church was built on the foundation of all the Apostles, with Jesus as the chief cornerstone it might bring it into proper context

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MarkosC
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« Reply #58 on: April 09, 2013, 10:41:34 PM »

The problem, IMO, is that the Latin Church has been perhaps too open to new music and dropping older forms and even texts.   Carolingian-era "Gregorian" Chant seems to be a likely monastic development, and does not fit well with what's known about Late Antique West Roman liturgy.  Later, they added polyphony , leading to many artistically stellar pieces. After the Renaissance, you had high works of art (e.g. Mozart's Masses) as well as Masses that imitated contemporary music forms.  But at least kept the same texts, even if they weren't participatory the way Late Antique liturgical music was supposed to be.

The big problem, IMO, came when they replaced the propers with hymns - no idea when they started allowing that, but probably as a counter-reformation era action to combat the popularity of Protestant hymns.   Now we have musical style and musical texts for most of Mass which are left up to local discretion, often trying to elicit whatever the local musicians consider a "pious" feeling (I think this is the source of all the weirdness in Latin Catholic music). 

"Why Catholics Can't Sing", referenced above, mentioned music wars in pre-WWII American Latin Catholicism, between Irish-American "folk songs" of the prevailing Irish American Catholic culture (O Lord I am not Worthy, On This Day, O Beautiful Mother) and the songs of Pietro Yon (organist at St Patricks, prolific writer, popular in pre-Vatican II USA but now largely forgotten) versus other traditions imported directly from continental Europe.  The author states a televised Solemn Pontifical Mass for President Kennedy, employing Mozart's Requiem, was  a cultural shock for American Catholics.

However, one of Pope Pius X's liturgical reforms was the promulgation of Gregorian Chant in the Solesmes form (Gregorian Chant had always been the official music of the Latin Church, but it was allegedly ignored for centuries and it was only Papal backing of the Solesmes restoration that brought it back into common use).   Many people resisted this, but there were many who fought for it.  For instance, the Society of Catholic Church Musicians fell behind it and stated, I believe in the 1930s, that many existing commonly used songs (to include Schubert's Ave Maria) were not appropriate for Catholic worship.   I think the Vatican's position has been consistent - Vatican II is clear that Gregorian Chant and Latin are the normative music of the Latin Church, Benedict XVI was for a restoration, and even Paul VI gave each diocese a list of Gregorian chant music, entreating the bishops that all Catholics should know at leas those tunes.   

So, I think the problem - schlocky music conforming to "contemporary" musical styles, ignorant of Latin musical tradition  - has bedeviled the Latin church for at least the entire last century, at least in the United States. (though the music today is arguably more schlocky).  Against this trend you have some Popes sticking up for Gregorian chant and some people following them, but for the past 100 years it's seemed to be a mostly loosing battle.   However, even today there are signs of hope - 20-something friends of mine who are responsible for the 9AM Mass at their local parish use a basic Latin Ordinary, some more traditional hymns, and the propers+responsorial psalm sung in English to simple Chant tones.   

Finally, I would not say the "Byzantine" tradition is necessarily better.  Confining myself just to Greek usage (since that's what I know), current Byzantine chant is almost certainly not the music used in the old liturgy in Constantinople, or even the same as the dominant music at the time of Turkish conquest (though at least the texts are the same with the latter).  In Greece, some of the older chanting styles are kind of hard to listen to.   In the US, we have organs and sometimes maudlin, sometimes ridiculous 1930s-60s era choral settings of the Liturgy.       
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O Lord although I desired to blot out
with my tears the handwriting of my many sins
And for the rest of my life to please Thee
through sincere repentance
Yet doth the enemy lead me astray as he wareth
against my sould with his cunning

O Lord before I utterly perish do Thou save me!
wynd
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« Reply #59 on: April 10, 2013, 11:28:57 PM »

However, even today there are signs of hope - 20-something friends of mine who are responsible for the 9AM Mass at their local parish use a basic Latin Ordinary, some more traditional hymns, and the propers+responsorial psalm sung in English to simple Chant tones.   

I think this is key. I am all for Gregorian polyphony but it takes lots of practice to get right. I think people gravitate towards the current type of hymns because they're relatively easy for an untrained Joe Parishioner to get started with. If there were a widely available, simple English chant setting for the Novus Ordo I think that would go a long way. (Maybe there is such a thing and I just don't know...)
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MarkosC
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« Reply #60 on: April 11, 2013, 10:06:40 PM »


I think this is key. I am all for Gregorian polyphony but it takes lots of practice to get right. I think people gravitate towards the current type of hymns because they're relatively easy for an untrained Joe Parishioner to get started with. If there were a widely available, simple English chant setting for the Novus Ordo I think that would go a long way. (Maybe there is such a thing and I just don't know...)

Agreed.  Such things exist - one can find them in places like Adoremus hymnal.   If a music director used that, and repeated settings very frequently, people would pick it up in no time.  IMO, this is what the Ordinary is for

One other thing to add to my rant in the last message: the problem of "bad music" and of Popes+some liturgical musicians fighting it actually goes back to medieval times and has constantly continued, it's just that the nature changes. 

Bad polyphony (e.g. silly, long, overwrought) was a huge problem in the late Middle Ages/early Renaissance.  For instance, a song called the "Man at Arms" was set to Mass settings some 40+ times, in manuscripts found throughout western Europe from 1450-1550, IIRC.  Palestrina even wrote one (and it's been recorded).   At Trent they wanted to crack down hard against polyphony, and it's said that only Palestrina's intervention (and his composition of Missa Papae Marcelli) kept them from outright banning it.  Later, there were all kinds of oratorio Masses, concerto Masses, string quartet Masses, Opera Masses, etc.  To say nothing of easier-to-sing "folk music" (for lack of a better word) Masses in rural or less musically gifted parishes.

All these are actually interesting from a music history perspective (though remember for each one that's considered worth recording today there are/were at least dozens sitting in libraries or not considered worthy of re-performance).  But they were often of dubious appropriateness at the time, and in the few cases I hear such oddities today (from musicians at more culturally sophisticated 1962 Missal Masses) I highly question their appropriateness....   
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O Lord although I desired to blot out
with my tears the handwriting of my many sins
And for the rest of my life to please Thee
through sincere repentance
Yet doth the enemy lead me astray as he wareth
against my sould with his cunning

O Lord before I utterly perish do Thou save me!
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« Reply #61 on: April 16, 2013, 10:35:00 AM »

Finally, I would not say the "Byzantine" tradition is necessarily better.  Confining myself just to Greek usage (since that's what I know), current Byzantine chant is almost certainly not the music used in the old liturgy in Constantinople, or even the same as the dominant music at the time of Turkish conquest (though at least the texts are the same with the latter).  In Greece, some of the older chanting styles are kind of hard to listen to. 

I do not see how exactly this can be justified, at least not without making some strange presuppositions. I do not mean to say that chant today is completely identical with how chant was sung in the time of the empire, but your statement here seems to imply that chant as it is done today is some degenerate corruption of some pristine Byzantine era chant. This is certainly false.
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« Reply #62 on: April 16, 2013, 11:42:09 AM »

Finally, I would not say the "Byzantine" tradition is necessarily better.  Confining myself just to Greek usage (since that's what I know), current Byzantine chant is almost certainly not the music used in the old liturgy in Constantinople, or even the same as the dominant music at the time of Turkish conquest (though at least the texts are the same with the latter).  In Greece, some of the older chanting styles are kind of hard to listen to.

I do not see how exactly this can be justified, at least not without making some strange presuppositions. I do not mean to say that chant today is completely identical with how chant was sung in the time of the empire, but your statement here seems to imply that chant as it is done today is some degenerate corruption of some pristine Byzantine era chant. This is certainly false.

Chant evolves and ages gradually over time. After all it has generally been an oral tradition in many regions. We know that musicologists have traced modern Kievan chants back in stages to their original roots in the Byzantine era. So it seems reasonable to argue an evolution of the Byzantine chant as well. While probably not dramatic in change like that of the Slavs, it likely differs from chant of the "dark ages" and early middle ages. I didn't pick up anything derogatory in Markos' post.
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theistgal
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don't even go there!


« Reply #63 on: April 25, 2013, 11:10:16 AM »

So this is what's left of the once so great Latin Church?
Ever since the Smoke of Satan began filtering in through a crack in it's foundation after VII, not much.

The "smoke of Satan" has ALWAYS been in the Church - didn't Our Lord speak about "the wheat and the tares"?

But there always have been, and always will be, plenty of loving, devout, loyal Catholics toiling away, anonymously serving their Lord to the best of their knowledge and ability, to keep the tares at bay.

Meanwhile, apropos the OP, here's my fave!

"Sons of God, hear His Holy Word,
Gather 'round the table of the Lord,
Eat His Body, drink His Blood,
And we'll sing a song of love,
Allelu, allelu, allelu, allelu-u-ya!"

- You have to envision the highlighted portions being sung in a VERY cheerful, bouncy manner. I have retitled this one "The Cannibal's Hymn" or "Hannibal Lector's Ode".  Grin
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« Reply #64 on: April 26, 2013, 03:19:34 PM »

So this is what's left of the once so great Latin Church?
Ever since the Smoke of Satan began filtering in through a crack in it's foundation after VII, not much.

The "smoke of Satan" has ALWAYS been in the Church - didn't Our Lord speak about "the wheat and the tares"?

But there always have been, and always will be, plenty of loving, devout, loyal Catholics toiling away, anonymously serving their Lord to the best of their knowledge and ability, to keep the tares at bay.

Meanwhile, apropos the OP, here's my fave!

"Sons of God, hear His Holy Word,
Gather 'round the table of the Lord,
Eat His Body, drink His Blood,
And we'll sing a song of love,
Allelu, allelu, allelu, allelu-u-ya!"

- You have to envision the highlighted portions being sung in a VERY cheerful, bouncy manner. I have retitled this one "The Cannibal's Hymn" or "Hannibal Lector's Ode".  Grin


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"May Thy Cross, O Lord, in which I seek refuge, be for me a bridge across the great river of fire.  May I pass along it to the habitation of life." ~St. Ephraim the Syrian
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