Sunday, March 28, 2010

Passion [Palm] Sunday

28 March 2010

Entrance Hosanna — Gathering (Paul Inwood)
Psalm 21 My God, My God (Christopher Walker)
Gospel Acclamation Lenten (mtgf)
Passion Acclamation Behold the Lamb of God (John Bell)
Preparation of Gifts Servant King (Graham Kendrick)
Eucharistic Acclamations Mass of Creation (Marty Haugen)
Lamb of God Mass of Remembrance (Marty Haugen)
Communion Ours were the griefs (Stephen Dean)
Final My song is love unknown (Ireland)

Term has ended and so, as is usual, there is only one Sunday Mass. As we joined by members of the Music Group so adaptations had been made to what had originally been planned. It was great to have the extra people.

We do not have a procession — though we have the route, with even a chapel to start from, the number of steps outside the church would militate against it. We therefore follow the second option in the Missal, the Solemn Entrance. As the distances are not great we use the Hosanna and Benedictus from the Gathering Mass. We lose the richness and variety of the texts given in the Missal but gain a real sense of acclamation using a setting which people know by heart. It also, I hope, gives an extra depth to when we the sing the text in the Eucharistic Prayer.

In the proclamation of the Passion we sing a short acclamation. The Passion is read by four readers: narrator, Christ and two reading the others parts. The choir act as a crowd for a couple of lines. I have long seen the giving of parts to whole congregation as an example of 'false participation' — involvement for its own sake together with adding the air of a re-enactment. The use of acclamations to punctuate the narrative seem to be a more authentic response. As a rule such acclamation should be be just that — acclamations, short phrases rather than hymn verses and I favour a single text and just a few entries: less is more. Though I appreciate the idea of Delores Dufner's Acclamations in Cantate providing an appropriate text for each gospel writer in the end a familiar chant which all can again sing by heart Behold the Lamb of God.

Stephen Dean's Ours were the griefs he bore was this year's innovation replacing his setting of the Communion Antiphon Father, if this cup with its tangled chromaticism and suffering servant verses. I think I preferred the gentle, meditative setting of the canticle from 1 Peter, otherwise sung at Lent Sunday Evening Prayer. We sang it unaccompanied and it seemed to provide a moment of repose before the week ahead.

Monday, March 22, 2010

5th Sunday of Lent

21 March 2010

Entrance For God so loved the world (mtgf)
Penitential Rite Ubi Caritas (Bob Hurd)
Psalm 125 What marvels the Lord worked for us. (mtgf)
Gospel Acclamation Lenten (mtgf)
Preparation of Gifts The love of the Lord (Michael Joncas)
Eucharistic Acclamations Ubi Caritas (Bob Hurd)
Lamb of God Mass of Remembrance (Marty Haugen)
Communion Remember not the sins of the past. (Bob Hurd)
Final Gift of love

Sunday, March 14, 2010

4th Sunday of Lent

14 March 2010

Entrance For God so loved the world (mtgf)
Penitential Rite Ubi Caritas (Bob Hurd)
Psalm 33 Taste and see. (Stephen Dean)
Gospel Acclamation Lenten (mtgf)
Preparation of Gifts Your love is finer (Marty Haugen)
Eucharistic Acclamations Ubi Caritas (Bob Hurd)
Lamb of God Mass of Remembrance (Marty Haugen)
Communion You are mine (David Haas)
Final Praise my soul

Monday, March 8, 2010

3rd Sunday of Lent

25th Jubilee of Ordination to the Priesthood

7 March 2010

Entrance Gathered in the love (Marty Haugen)
Penitential Rite Ubi Caritas (Bob Hurd)
Psalm 102 The Lord is compassion and love (mtgf)
Gospel Acclamation Lenten (mtgf)
Preparation of Gifts Love one another (mtgf)
Eucharistic Acclamations Mass of Creation (Marty Haugen)
Lamb of God Mass of Remembrance (Marty Haugen)
Communion Be still for the presence of the Lord (David Evans)
Holy Ground (mtgf)
Final Lord, you give the great commission (Jeffrey Rowthorn)

This Sunday we celebrated the Silver Jubilee of our Chaplain to the Priesthood with a single Mass at 4pm followed by Reception. Combining two Masses meant combining two groups of musicians which meant we had a greater richness of sound and musical possibilities. An underlying tension was celebrating a joyful occasion on a Sunday of Lent. We were faithful to the texts of the day though we looked at them through the 'lens' of ministry.

An example of the greater resources was the opening song. Marty Haugen based the song on the chords of the Pachelbel canon and provided a simplified version for the canon as an extended introduction. As we have some good instrumentalists, including 2 v g violinists, we did the original canon which was delightful. I am not always convinced by gathering music but this did, I think, provide some calm before the event. We were also able to use both piano and organ, with the other instruments, together. This seems to work find if it is clear which 'end' is leading. For Gathered in the Love the organ provided some extra bass. For the Mass of Creation, the Eucharistic Prayer was sung, organ led and the other instruments came in for the acclamations. It meant that the congregation was wrapped in sound.

With a number of visitors the local congregation, with the musicians, gave a good lead to the singing. Be still for the presence was chosen, in part, so that it would be a recognisable 'landmark'. Love one another was written for the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the College in 2000 which was in the Easter Season. John's image of 'bearing fruit' echoed Luke's gospel on this Sunday. Holy Ground was new for the occasion. The refrain picked up the image of standing on holy ground from the Exodus reading and idea of giving and receiving Christ as part of communion and ministry. I had originally wondered about psalm 14 for the verses but in the end chose a text on ministry from the Scottish Church Hymnary 4. A further consideration for the piece was that needed work well with musical resources, including guitars. At one stage I was concerned that it felt like two distinct pieces (refrain and verses) that had been bound together, and though the verses could work well as a separate hymn in the event it seemed to have a unity.