Wednesday, July 30, 2014


Sung Ordinary of the Mass and Alleluia for both Friday AND the weekend: same as July

VIII-1 at 6 PM

Entrance hymn: O Sacred Heart, O Love Divine, on sheet provided
Psalm 69: Lord, in your great love, answer me, music by Providence's own Alexander Peloquin (response) and Pére Joseph Gelineau, SJ (versicles), Worship #899
Offertory hymn: Cor dulce, Cor amabile
Communion hymn: Pange lingua gloriosi, Worship #813
Recessional hymn: To Jesus' Heart, all-burning, on sheet provided


Entrance hymn: Alleluia! sing to Jesus, Maroon #347, second tune
Psalm 145: The hand of the Lord feeds us; he answers all our needs, music by one of St. Meinrad's finest, Fr. Columba Kelly, OSB (response) and Pére Joseph Gelineau, SJ (versicles), Worship #916
Offertory hymn: Father, we thank thee who hast planted, Maroon #195 (Listen)
Communion anthem: Dear Lord and Father of mankind, sung to the tune "Repton" by Charles Hubert Hastings Parry
- Yes, the same Charles Hubert Hastings Parry that wrote the tune to last week's recessional hymn, Sing Praise to the Lord.  Prince Charles, who may never see the throne in England as he may be outlived by his mother at the rate she's going, is a huge fan of Parry.  At one time, there was a video somewhere on YouTube, where the Prince discusses Parry's music.)
Meditation hymn: Now, my tongue, the mystery telling, Maroon #199, first tune (verses 1-3)
- This hymn is a translation of the Latin Pange Lingua, using a slightly-altered form of the Mode III chant tune (Listen) by the same name.
Recessional hymn: Ye holy angels bright, Maroon #600


Thursday, July 24, 2014

SUNDAY XVII (of the Year)



Sung Ordinary of the Mass and Alleluia: same as the previous three Sundays.

Numbers for this weekend are in the red "Worship" hymnal.

Entrance hymn: Sing praise to God who reigns above, #528 (Listen)
Psalm 119: Lord, I love your commands, music by Robert Batastini (versicles) and Joseph Gelineau, SJ (response), #913
Offertory hymn: Immortal, invisible, God only wise, #512 (Listen)
Communion anthem: Be thou my vision, music by Jean-Hubert Desrocquettes
Meditation hymn: Shepherd of souls, #728 (Listen)
Recessional hymn: Sing praise to the Lord, #539 (Listen)


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

SUNDAY XVI (of the Year)


Getting used to a new wireless keyboard on my laptop.  Yes, the letters and numbers are in the same place, but some of my regularly-buttons such as "Home", "End", and "Delete" are in different places, so if I work too fast (and I'm a fairly fast typist), I may just goof.

Anyhoo, without further ado:


Sung Ordinary of the Mass and Alleluia: same as the past couple of weeks

Working from the Maroon hymnal this weekend.

Entrance hymn: Behold a sower! from afar, #401 (We did this as the offertory last Sunday.)
Psalm 86: Lord, you are good and forgiving, music by Owen Alstott (from the missalette)
Offertory hymn: Come, ye thankful people, come, #137 (Listen)
- Hymn starts at about the 1:35 mark on the listen link.
Communion anthem: Sing to the Lord of harvest, set to the tune "Wie lieblich ist der Maien"
Meditation hymn: God himself is with us, #477 (verses 1 and 3 only) (Listen)
Recessional hymn: Soon may the last glad song arise, #539, second tune
- Same tune as Lift up your heads, ye mighty gates.


Thursday, July 10, 2014




Has anyone noticed that since the new translation of Holy Mass began (Fall 2011) that you have not been singing the first line of the Gloria ("Gloria in excelsis Deo"/"Glory to God in the highest")?  That is no mistake.  In a well-written Gloria, the first line is an intonation, reserved for a cantor, or (preferred) the celebrant.  Thus the singing by the congregation starts with "Et in terra pax..."/"And on earth peace...".

Another habit by many parishes and composers is the use of a "responsorial Gloria", where the first line or two serves as a refrain for the people.  The Gloria settings we use, and will continue to use, are through-composed, that is, straight through, the way the Gloria was intended to be sung.

A typical musical structure of the Gloria is like a small suite of sorts.  It begins with the celebrant's intonation, and is sung joyously over a well-registered organ.  After all, the first section praises God the Father and his only-begotten Son.  When you reach "Qui tollis peccata mundi..."/"You take away the sins of the world", you'll notice a softening of the organ, and a much more legato (broader) sound.  That section is your "petition", asking the Christ, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, to have mercy on us, to "receive our prayer".  Finally, the pompous "Quoniam tu solus Sanctus..."/"For you alone are the Holy One", where the organ and singing reach joyous levels, and increasing as we add the Holy Spirit into the mix and finalizing it with a grand AMEN!


- For the first time in a few weeks, we'll be working from the maroon hymnal.
- The people who attended the 7:30 and 11:15 Masses last Sunday got a taste of the new Gloria (Holy Angels Mass, written by yours truly in 2011) for the first time.  That, along with the rest of the sung Ordinary of the Mass (the Sanctus, Amen, and Agnus from Heritage Mass, by Owen Alstott, the Memorial Acclamation "We proclaim your death, O Lord..." from my aforementioned Holy Angels Mass) will remain the same throughout July and August (with the exception of the Fornelli Saints' Feast on August 16 at 5 PM).  The Alleluia (music by Owen Alstott) will also remain the same.

And now, the rest of the story (with all due respect to the late great Paul Harvey):

Entrance hymn: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, Maroon #279
Psalm 65: The seed that falls on good ground will yield a fruitful harvest, music by Owen Alstott
- music as written in the missalette for July 13.
Offertory hymn: Behold a Sower! from afar, Maroon #401 (Listen)
Communion anthem: Jesu, joy of man's desiring, music by Johann Sebastian Bach
- J.S. Bach's arrangement of an earlier German hymn tune, Werde Munter, that was written by Johann Schop, which we have sung with the hymn Come with us, O blessed Jesus.
Meditation hymn: Fairest Lord Jesus, Maroon #346, second tune (Listen)
Recessional hymn: O worship the King, Maroon #288 (Listen)


Tuesday, July 8, 2014


Every once in a blue moon, I may get a question, asking if I ever considered using certain titles, or why I don't use certain titles.  Although I have been an organist for the past 33 years, I have been getting that question for the past 26 years because that's about the time I stopped using those certain titles (on my own free will), at least at Sunday Mass.

In 1983, when I got my first actual music director's job in Woonsocket (where I would not only play the organ, but direct the choir and select music as well), I was brainwashed by the parish's powers that be that certain titles ("Be Not Afraid", "Here I Am, Lord", "Eagle's Wings", and other songs written in similar pop-ballad-like styles) were the cat's meow.  This was the "new thing" in liturgy, so I was told.  Oh, and there was this organization, the National Association of Pastoral Musicians (or "NPM", or as some musicians including myself dub, "NaPalM"), who printed articles in their magazines and held workshops in many parishes about how you can be "creative" with all this "liturgical music" and become a "liturgist".

Those people I encountered in 1983 were WRONG!  I learned that in 1988, upon the return of an old friend and mentor, Reuel Gifford, who was active in Catholic music until his retirement last year from St. William's in Warwick.  It was his music that inspired me to do the music that was best fit for the Church's central worship, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Such titles and styles that I describe were written for "contemporary ensembles", you know, the "folk group".  Guitars, piano, and other instruments that associate well with rock bands, hootenanny jamborees, and even elevator music ("beautiful music", as described by such former radio stations as WHJY, before they turned to rock and roll in the summer of 1981, and WLKW, which turned to the oldies station B-101 later on).  They may also do well at "prayer meetings" and "tent revivals".  You may wish to pop a CD from the publishers of such music (GIA and OCP are the two largest publishers thereof).

Some people try to say that "this is what Vatican II called for", or "it's in the spirit of Vatican II".  Those people couldn't be more wrong.  In fact, the Constitution of the Sacred Liturgy, that is, Sacrosanctum Concilium, a binding document written by the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council noted that "In the Latin Church the pipe organ is to be held in high esteem, for it is the traditional musical instrument which adds a wonderful splendor to the Church's ceremonies and powerfully lifts up man's mind to God and to higher things," and "The Church acknowledges Gregorian chant as specially suited to the Roman Liturgy: therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services. But other kinds of sacred music, especially polyphony, are by no means excluded from liturgical celebrations, so long as they accord with the spirit of the liturgical action".  Those songs and styles of songs that I mentioned above, I must add, do not, as the music these pieces are set to aren't even sacred; they are secular, or at least "worldly".

The words I quoted from Sacrosanctum Concilium have also been reiterated in the 1967 Musicam Sacram, as well as in writings by two Popes from this century, Pope Benedict XVI, and his predecessor, Pope St. John Paul II.

The working agreement we have here is that Father Bucci selects the hymns (the ones you see printed in the bulletin each week) and I select the sung parts of the Mass (ordinary and proper), unless something otherwise has been requested by Father Bucci.  The hymns Father picks go hand-in-hand with the Scripture readings of the day, as well as the homily that he preaches.  Together, we make an effort to satisfy the requirements set forth in the Constitution of the Sacred Liturgy (and I did say "requirements", not "suggestions" - this is a binding document, regardless of what the "mainstreamers" may think).

If we disallow certain pieces of music that other parishes allow, sure, one can safely say "because Father Bucci says so", but the reason "Father Bucci says so" is because the Church also says so.  Feel free to visit the Adoremus Society for a wealth of links, stories, and even official documents by Popes, the Vatican, U.S. Bishops, and more, on music and sacred liturgy.  The proof is in the pen.

Incidentally, regarding being a "liturgist"... the pastor is the liturgist, the way it should be, via the guidelines set forth by Holy Mother Church.


Thursday, July 3, 2014


OK, but no solemnities this time. ;)

We do have our First Friday Sacred Heart Community Mass (time change: 9 AM, as it is also the Fourth of July), and this weekend we fall into the numbered Sundays of the Year (aka "Ordinary Time", or really "Ordered Time"), this Sunday being the 14th Sunday (or as we traditionalists like to say, "Sunday XIV").

We did add some national hymns (or as some like to say, "patriotic hymns" - both of our hymnals got the "national" right in categorizing such hymnody) to our lists without dousing the entire Mass with such.  To do so would lose the actual "theme" of the Mass in terms of Scripture for the day and other proper prayers of the Mass.  I like to call it (if you remember those crazy addition commercials on TV) "the magical amount".

So, without further ado:

We have changed our Alleluia and our Mass Ordinary for the months of July and August.
Alleluia: the Owen Alstott alleluia that we did around this time last summer.  The music for this Alleluia is in the missalette, within the readings for this Sunday (July 6).
Mass Ordinary: for these two months, a combination of Heritage Mass (a familiar English Mass setting by Owen Alstott), from which we will draw the Sanctus, Amen, and Agnus Dei, and Holy Angels Mass (an English Mass written by yours truly based on some of the more familiar chant melodies), from which we will draw the Gloria (new to you) and the Memorial Acclamation We proclaim your death, O Lord (which we've done before, it's a metrical adaptation of the Mortem tuam annuntiamus, Domine, from which it is translated).  Soon we will have new congregation cards with the complete Holy Angels Mass, as well as two of the Latin settings we have done previously (Laus Tibi Christe and Cristo Risuciti).

- Sung by the choir of St. Michael Church in Stillwater, Minnesota, conducted by Jayne Windnagel and accompanied by Joseph Clarke.

VII-4-14; 9 AM

Entrance hymn: O Sacred Heart, O Love Divine, on sheets provided
Psalm 8: How great is your name, O Lord, our God, through all the earth, music by Dom Anthony Gregory Murray, OSB (response) and Pére Joseph Gelineau, SJ (versicles)
Offertory hymn: All you who seek a comfort sure, Worship #490 (Listen)
- Same tune as I heard the voice of Jesus say.  Hymn comes in at about the 6:10 mark of the listen link.
Communion anthem: Cor Jesu Trinitatis, from the tune "Gott Soll Gepriesen"
Recessional hymn: God of our Fathers, Worship #764 (Listen)


Entrance hymnGod of our Fathers, Worship #764
Psalm 145: I will praise your name for ever, my king and my God, music by yours truly.
Offertory hymn: Jesus shall reign, Worship #492 (Listen)
Communion anthem: He shall feed his flock, by Georg Frederick Handel, from his Messiah 
Meditation hymn: All you who seek a comfort sure, Worship #490
Recessional hymn: My country, 'tis of thee, Worship #762

Have a blessed, safe, and peaceful Fourth!