Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Back to the Renaissance!

Now that the U.S. and other English-speaking bishops have approved a new 19th-century-style archaic translation of the parts of the Mass ("And with your spirit, anyone?"), the pope has decided to do them one better and suggest a return to Gregorian chant and Roman polyphony in the liturgy, pushing liturgical music back another 300 or 700 years, depending on which you choose.

In Bennie's defense, however, it was hardly an authoritative statement, just remarks given at a concert in his honor. I'm sure if he reflected on Vatican II's requirement of full, conscious, and active participation by the entire assembly, I'm sure he'd realize the folly of reintroducing musical forms that no one except trained choir monks and professional choirs were ever able to sing. Beautiful though they were, those liturgical halcyon days were at best a series of really terrific concerts.

I prefer the remarks of a certain Cardinal Carlo Furno, grand master of the Equestrian Order (Knights) of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, who, according to UPI, said it was "better to have guitars on the altar and rock and roll masses than empty churches."

2 Comments:

At 6:31 PM, Blogger Heidi said...

That last comment has "Verbatim" written all over it.

 
At 11:52 AM, Blogger Nate said...

In Bennie's defense, however, it was hardly an authoritative statement, just remarks given at a concert in his honor. I'm sure if he reflected on Vatican II's requirement of full, conscious, and active participation by the entire assembly, I'm sure he'd realize the folly of reintroducing musical forms that no one except trained choir monks and professional choirs were ever able to sing. Beautiful though they were, those liturgical halcyon days were at best a series of really terrific concerts.

You do know that Sacrosanctum Concilium also affirmed the Church's musical heritage as well, right? As in, Gregorian Chant and polyphony?

You can't just pick and choose which parts of Vatican II you like.

 

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