It doesn’t happen very often, but when it does, we need to PARTY!
Yeah, go do that. Because the Most Reverend John F. Doerfler, STD, JCL, Bishop of Marquette did something completely awesome.
He just mandated Gregorian Chant in all parishes in the Diocese of Marquette, established a Diocesan hymnal, and told everyone that yes, you WILL do all of the following things:
1. All parishes and schools will learn to chant the Ordinary parts of the Mass in English that are found in the Roman Missal, and they will be sung by the congregation some of the time throughout the year.
2. All parishes and schools will learn to chant the Kyrie, Sanctus and Agnus Dei from the “Missa lubilate Deo,” and they will be sung by the congregation some of the time throughout the year.
3. All parishes and schools will learn to chant the Communion Antiphon in English to a very simple tone that everyone can sing, and the Communion Antiphon will be sung at every Sunday Mass. A hymn may be sung after the Communion Antiphon while the congregation is receiving the Blessed Sacrament.
4. A Diocesan Hymnal will be used to ensure the musical quality and doctrinal integrity of the Sacred Music. The hymnal will include a broad repertoire of hymns from classical to contemporary.
a. It is projected that the hymnal may be ready to implement on the first Sunday of Advent, 2017. Once the diocesan hymnal is implemented, no other hymnal may be used.
b. Effective immediately, no other hymnal may be purchased.
c. To assist with the cost, the diocese will purchase the hymnals, and the parishes will reimburse the diocese for the cost over a period of three years. Over time, this will amount to a significant cost savings to the parishes in comparison to the annual disposable music resources.
d. It is acknowledged that some parishes have recently purchased hymnals. In these cases, a singular provision will be made for each parish. To assist with the planning and implementation of the diocesan hymnal, the pastors of these parishes are to request this special provision from the Diocesan Bishop in writing no later than April 30, 2016. In making the request, please indicate the hymnal that was purchased, the purchase date, the total number of hymnals purchased, the cost and any other relevant information, such as whether the hymnals were donated, etc.
e. Parishes may recommend hymns to be included in the diocesan hymnal, with the understanding that not all recommendations might be accommodated due to space limitations or to ensure doctrinal integrity. To facilitate this process, pastors are to submit all hymn recommendations to the Diocesan Director of Sacred Music no later than April 30, 2016.
f. Once the diocesan hymnal is implemented, permission may be requested from the Diocesan Bishop to utilize new Sacred Music for congregational singing that is published subsequent to the implementation of the diocesan hymnal.
g. Once the diocesan hymnal is implemented, permission may be requested from the Diocesan Bishop to use choral settings that are not for congregational singing and are not in the diocesan hymnal.
h. More information regarding the hymnal and its implementation will be made available as it is developed.
5. The Diocesan Director of Sacred Music will provide annual, regional workshops for parish musicians to assist them in the implementation of these directives. He will also assist music teachers in Catholic schools to implement Sacred Music in the school curriculum and at school Masses. Finally, he stands at the service of parishes upon request to help implement Sacred Music in other ways.
I love this bishop. I hope every bishop in the country does exactly what he did, and if the Fluffy Horde doesn’t like it, they can go join the Episcopal church, or something.
Follow the squirrel minion to get to Lori’s website, Little Squirrel Books.