As a previously baptized Candidate, I am entering the Church on Palm Sunday. I suppose this means that our mass will be using a specific order of liturgy and special music. They are baptizing the Catechumens in the Easter Vigil mass the following week in a separate ceremony.
I haven’t heard about anybody else entering the Church on Palm Sunday (and receiving the Eucharist and Confirmation), so I don’t know how normal this is… I’m excited to be able to receive communion during Holy Week, so I am absolutely not going to complain about entering a week earlier than the Catechumens!
Please include me and all RCIA Candidates and Catachumens in your prayers. My first confession is the Saturday before Palm Sunday, and I need all the advice/help I can on that. I’m shaking in my boots…
God’s smile is on you, Michael as you have come home to his church. It is not unusual to be nervous about going to confession…even the 100th time. When you recite the words, this is my first confession…be assured that the priest will be delighted to walk you through the steps. Take a deep breath, he’s heard most everything, so he will not be offended or embarassed or aghast or condemning or anything other than welcoming and ressuring. The relief and the joy you will feel will make you wonder, why you took so long to ever take advantage of this precious sacrament. More people should use it. You are in our prayers!
There is a wonderful song, called “The Greatest Song of All.”
and the words go…The Greatest Song of All, is the Song of the redeemed. This will be your happiest Easter as well!
I’m not Larry, but acclamation during the Gospel occurs during Palm Sunday in our parish as well. Since the Gospel reading is quite long, the congregation sits. At certain points during the Gospel, an acclamation is sung (“Were you There” or “Jesus Remember Me” or something similar.) It is very nice and reverent.
i asked that question in an attempt to not criticize, and i am not directing any criticism toward you, Cathoic90. i figured that its name meant that the people interrupted the proclamation of the Gospel (the Passion) with singing.
if larry would have answered that he was a music director, i would have then asked why he and other music directors feel justified to add whatever they want into the Mass. IMO by inserting elements into the Mass, the Mass is profaned. i wouldn’t say that such things don’t sound good, but i would argue that they can’t possibly be reverent. reverent, by definition, is celebrating the Mass according to the norms, as desired by the Holy Spirit. (that’s indicated by the fact that the norms have been established by Holy Mother Church.) as one of the assembly, i know that when i participate in the singing, i am focused on the words going out, not on the words going in. music directors who do this are distracting the people and for some reason don’t think we can handle a long reading. these insertions are disallowed according to the documents of the Church.
so, can any music director address this? as a person in the pews, i am powerless to do anything about this, except confront our music director. since this is a way to get these questions answered without being in anyone’s face, i hope someone in this position of responsibility will respond.
I’m curious as well how the music is selected. Do you, as music directors, ever read documents such as “Paschales Solemnitatis” The Preparation and Celebration of the Easter Season prepared by the Congregation of Divine Worship?
When reading this document with regard to Palm Sunday, everything is spelled out pretty clearly. For example:
“32. During the procession, the choir and people should sing the chants proposed in the Roman Missal, especially Psalms 23 and 46, as well as other appropriate songs in honor of Christ the King”
It would be great for those of us in the pew if this were followed by the priest as well as the choir.
I’d be interested in hearing from the ‘liturgists’ and ‘music ministry’ folks.
Sorry I couldn’t get back to you sooner. I’ve had some very busy days lately.
You asked for some background … I am not currently employed as a music director, but I did direct a choir from 1975 to 1983. I make part of my living playing bass … double bass or electric bass guitar. And on Sundays I play in a liturgical ensemble with 6 voices accompanied by piano and bass. For special occasions we add horns, woodwinds, other strings, and percussion.
The parish does have a full time Director of Music and Liturgy who works closely with the pastor and associates.
As for why some music directors feel justified to include singing during the reading of the Passion … it is an option indicated in materials distributed by a liturgy department of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
One of the resources supplied to parishes by The Archdiocese of Chicago is a book with the Passion reading that lectors use during the three part reading of the passion.
At 4 or 5 points in the reading, there are instructions to pause for a short period of silence or for the singing of a short refrain or a Psalm.
Here, the very short refrains are included with the readings in booklets that are distributed to everyone who attends Passion week services.
We started exercising the option to sing a short refrain in 1994 or 1995.
If you note the last phrase allows room for judgement. What would be totally wrong is to ignore any special occasion and pick songs that did not apply to the day celebrated. I try even in ordinary time to pick music that is tied to the readings.
I find it interesting that even though it is Passion Sunday, songs related to the passion are inappropriate for the entrance. I will reserve at least on such song for the offetory, though.
We use this one every year as the Palm Sunday processional hymn (although we have GIA’s “RitualSong” hymnals). I don’t have my hymnal or the choir music schedule on hand so I can’t give other specifics, but there will be a responsorial setting of Psalm 22. “Now We Remain” is pretty standard in our parish during Lent, not sure if it’s the Palm Sunday schedule, though.
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