Our parish uses the “Gather” hymnal and one called “Worship”, which we in the parish know as the “blue” one and the “red” one. I’ll honestly have to look up the specific details for the two books this Sunday at Mass, but as I understand it, these are pretty standard nationwide. Both are hardbacks. Both have several decent traditional hymns in them (Tantum Ergo, Salve Regina, etc) as well as a lot of not so traditional stuff like the dreaded “Gather Us In” (ugh) and my personal all time least favorite, the breathtakingly insipid song, “Will You Let me be Your Servant.”
Our school recently purchased the Holy Is The Lord collection from Franciscan Press to go along with the hymnals we already have at daily Mass. We had to go have them hardcovered and spiral bound to protect them, though, because they don’t come in hardback. It doubled the cost to us.
What hymnal do you use? Do you like it? If so, why? If not, why not?
Does it include harmony parts for the congregation or only for the choir? (Our parish has melody line ONLY)
Does it include verses that are “politically correct”, like the now infamous “Faith of Our Mothers” verse that was added in many hymnals to the classic “Faith of Our Father’s” tune?
I am also interested in more technical concerns: does it come in a choir version, with harmonies and keyboard parts? Does it include organ parts? (We have a great organ, but sadly not a great organist.) Do the soloist and/or instrumental parts match keys with the choir parts (this is, astonishingly, a common problem: the hymn will be written in, say , F major, but the solo part for various instruments will be written in A flat or some other key. It’s monstrous!)
Does your hymnal include service music (parts for the Mass and other services, like the Anamnesis and the Gloria) ?
Finally, has anyone seen or used the St. Michael’s Hymnal that I have heard a good bit about?
Thanks to all!