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  #1  
Old Sep 26, '04, 6:36 am
Psalm45:9 Psalm45:9 is offline
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Default Was Bach a Catholic?

I am wondering if Bach was a Catholic. He wrote so much beautiful music for mass, and even an Ave Maria. I know he was German so I do not know if he is Catholic or Lutheran. Does anyone know?
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  #2  
Old Sep 26, '04, 7:13 am
Todd Easton Todd Easton is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

The article on Bach in the World Book Encyclopedia says that he was a devout Lutheran.
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  #3  
Old Sep 26, '04, 11:04 am
stellina stellina is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

I was wondering the same question a while ago & discovered he was indeed Lutheran. He must have had Catholic patrons that commissioned the Masses, etc. A good resource is the Cambridge Encyclopedia of Music.
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  #4  
Old Sep 26, '04, 12:30 pm
CatholicNerd CatholicNerd is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

Actually, most of the Masses he wrote were for Lutheran parishes in the north, which still retained the use of Latin, chant, the concept of sacrifice, and other things that Lutherans hate today. The Mass in B Minor is a different matter, as it was written for a Catholic patron, but it was not suited for actual liturgical use and was sorta discarded. To answer the question definitively, Bach was not a Catholic. At this time in history, people in what we know as Germany didn't get around much and stayed whatever religion their prince was. Bach woulda made a great Catholic, though His St. Matthew Passion is absolutely haunting, and although I do admire the settings of the Passion by great Catholic composers, nobody can touch Bach's setting.
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  #5  
Old Sep 26, '04, 12:37 pm
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Scott Waddell Scott Waddell is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

When later composers like Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, etc. are writing masses, they are generally not meant for liturgical use, they are writing in a composer's tradition.

Scott
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  #6  
Old Sep 26, '04, 10:14 pm
RobedWithLight RobedWithLight is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

Well he's not. Bach is Lutheran and a devout one. I would like to think though that he is a Catholic, and I wish he was. After all, he is one of my favorite composers.

Gerry
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Old Sep 27, '04, 5:47 am
mercygate mercygate is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

This story may be an urban legend, but I heard that during the reign of Paul VI, a group of musicians made a petition to open a cause for sainthood for Bach. Unfortunately, it was rejected on the grounds that Bach was Lutheran.
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  #8  
Old Sep 27, '04, 8:22 am
thann thann is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

Actually Bach did not write an Ave Maria.

Charles Gounod (who WAS Catholic) set the Ave Maria to a composition of Bach's, Prelude in C (Gounod had to add one measure to the music to make the words fit).

'thann
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  #9  
Old Aug 6, '09, 2:20 am
Frankieitalian Frankieitalian is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

Actually there is a great deal of evidence to show that Bach converted to the Catholic Faith. Composition, chromaticism and the developmental process By Henry Burnett, Roy Nitzberg discusses it. As well as agreat book called The true life of Johann Sebastian Bach By Klaus Eidam. It happened in 1760. Bach lived in Italy for many years starting in 1756, studying with Padre Martini in Bologna. He became organist at the Milan cathedral in 1760. During his time in Italy he converted from Lutheranism to Catholicism. Anyway just wanted you to know what my research found..take care
Frank
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  #10  
Old Aug 7, '09, 1:38 pm
Carthusianish Carthusianish is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

Yea, he's not Catholic, but sort of one of the top on my list of "Wish They Wee Catholic."

Wish we could "trade" for some of the Catholics of the past that sort of "embarrass us"
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  #11  
Old Sep 3, '09, 12:10 pm
annejohno annejohno is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

look at this article which says he did become a Catholic

http://www.canticanova.com/articles/ot/artc61.htm
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  #12  
Old Sep 7, '09, 5:39 pm
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pyro_alchemist pyro_alchemist is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

I like to think that Bach is a Catholic NOW.
I would like to sing with his choir in heaven!
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Old Sep 7, '09, 5:53 pm
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pyro_alchemist pyro_alchemist is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by annejohno View Post
look at this article which says he did become a Catholic

http://www.canticanova.com/articles/ot/artc61.htm
That's Johann Christian Bach, his son.

Not sure about P.D.Q. Bach
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  #14  
Old Apr 13, '10, 6:59 am
mllevaleur mllevaleur is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frankieitalian View Post
Actually there is a great deal of evidence to show that Bach converted to the Catholic Faith. Composition, chromaticism and the developmental process By Henry Burnett, Roy Nitzberg discusses it. As well as agreat book called The true life of Johann Sebastian Bach By Klaus Eidam. It happened in 1760. Bach lived in Italy for many years starting in 1756, studying with Padre Martini in Bologna. He became organist at the Milan cathedral in 1760. During his time in Italy he converted from Lutheranism to Catholicism. Anyway just wanted you to know what my research found..take care
Frank
Umm...J.S. Bach died in 1750, so...I think you must be remembering info about his youngest son, Johann Christian.
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  #15  
Old Apr 22, '10, 7:19 am
DeaconsSon87 DeaconsSon87 is offline
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Default Re: Was Bach a Catholic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by thann View Post
Actually Bach did not write an Ave Maria.

Charles Gounod (who WAS Catholic) set the Ave Maria to a composition of Bach's, Prelude in C (Gounod had to add one measure to the music to make the words fit).

'thann
Exactly-that is one of my FAVORITE pieces!

Bach was a devout Lutheran, Gounod a devout Catholic-I think the combination is simply BEAUTIFUL-almost as if we're asking the Blessed Mother's prayers for the unity of all her Son's followers!
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