Sunday, October 25, 2009

30th Sunday in Ordinary Time

25 October 2009

EntranceHe healed the darkness of my mind (Fred Pratt Green)
Penitential RiteSt Gabriels (mtgf)
GloriaSt Gabriels (mtgf)
Psalm 125What marvels the Lord worked (mtgf)
Gospel AcclamationAlleluia Beati (Christopher Walker)
Preparation of GiftsEye has not seen (Marty Haugen)
Eucharistic AcclamationsMass of Creation (Marty Haugen)
Lamb of GodLamb of God 6 (mtgf)
CommunionBehold the Lamb (Martin WIllett)
FinalPraise my soul

There is some criticism of texts which use the first person singular but it is not as ban everything in the first person - as someone once pointed out to me there goes the Magnificat... There is a danger of making sweeping statements and ignoring tradition - this includes the words of Jesus.

However the opening hymn this morning the first person voice was the blind man. (I expect the hymn was originally written about the blind man in John's Gospel heard on Lent 4 rather than Bartimaeus) We used Tallis' Canon for the melody and people sang well. This was interesting as the text was direct and particular. You would need a reason to sing this text - my guess is that people do appreciate that texts are chosen in response to the readings and are not random whims.

Whether this is true for more familiar hymns, such as Praise my soul, is less clear. A paraphrase of Psalm 102, a psalm of thanksgiving and healing. Though other choices reflected blindness, light, darkness and sight; the last hymn reflected more the psalm response: What marvels the Lord worked us.

There can be an interesting question - why this psalm and not for example Psalm 26 - the Lord is my light and my help? The main reason will be that the Gospel and the first Reading have not been chosen for the surface story. So it's not just about blindness but also about what God does for us.

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