Is "Make me a Channel of Your Peace" a communion hymn?


#1

Is “Make me a Channel of Your Peace” (Prayer of St. Francis) used as a communion hymn in the U.S.? Or is it preferred for other occasions? Thank you.


#2

I recently read that the Peace Prayer wasn't actually written by St. Francis of Assisi. This quote comes from* Francis of Assisi: A New Biography * by Fr. Augustine Thompson:

The “Peace Prayer” is modern and anonymous, originally written in French, and dates to about 1912, when it was published in a minor French spiritual magazine, La Clochette. Noble as its sentiments are, Francis would not have written such a piece, focused as it is on the self, with its constant repetition of the pronouns “I” and “me,” the words “God” and “Jesus” never appearing once.

I guess it's still used as a "communion hymn" though :shrug:


#3

Better that than “Father, I Have Sinned” which has been our parish’s Communion Hymn for all of Lent.

“I” hymns should not be used at Communion. The GIRM says of the Communion Chant (Hymn) that “its purpose being to express the spiritual union of the communicants by means of the unity of[size=2] their voices, to show gladness of heart, and to bring out more clearly the “communitarian” [/size]character of the procession to receive the Eucharist[size=2].” “I” hy[size=2]mns generally don[size=2]'t accomplish any[size=2] of those.

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#4

[quote="Phemie, post:3, topic:320211"]
Better that than "Father, I Have Sinned" which has been our parish's Communion Hymn for all of Lent.

"I" hymns should not be used at Communion. The GIRM says of the Communion Chant (Hymn) that "its purpose being to express the spiritual union of the communicants by means of the unity of[size=2] [/size]their voices, to show gladness of heart, and to bring out more clearly the “communitarian” character of the procession to receive the Eucharist[size=2]." "I" hy[size=2]mns generally don[size=2]'t accomplish any[size=2] of those.

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[/quote]

Thanks so much for that! I thought that communion hymns should be specifically eucharistic. I get annoyed at many of the modern feely-touchy hymns we sing at communion, but I am relieved to hear that if they are "communitarian" then they are within guidelines, if not good taste. From this though, I can see that I have a valid objection to "I" hymns (eg. "Father, in my life I see"). As a senior member of the liturgy committee, I am intending to slowly start to exert a little influence on these matters.


#5

Except that the communion antiphons sometimes are psalms, and sometimes they are from the “I” perspective.


#6

When the Church makes “I” hymns the official texts of Mass, as the antiphons are, I’ll withdraw my objection to them.


#7

An "alius cantus aptus" is just that, no less no more. The GIRM, as I understand it, makes no other prescriptions for the communio accompanying that procession or the other two. So, its employment is at the discretion of the musical "shot caller."
"I" could also defend Temple's paraphrase as definitely NOT a "me or I" declarative. Firstly, it is an adapted prayer between a petitioner and God, it addresses God. Second, should two or more gathered take up the singing of this kind of sung prayer at the same moment, it literally ceases to be an "I" song. Third, plenty of option one Communio propers employ "I" texts, AND refer quite specifically to the OT/Gospel lessons as well as the Introit and Offertorio texts.
And to the canard that publisher editorial boards and countless "experts" have shoved into our psychs for decades that the act of Eucharistic communication must somehow be inferred into a a fourth option ACA so as to be categorized in their hymnals as such, how's that worked out for texts like "I myself, am the Bread of Life" or "Let us break BREAD together on our knees "?
Once a musician opts out of the first proper assigned, discretion and wisdom must kick into the deciding process. And yes, we're all aware that there are issues between those propers assigned to the calendar in the Latin Graduale Romanum versus the MR3 English.


#8

[quote="Phemie, post:6, topic:320211"]
When the Church makes "I" hymns the official texts of Mass, as the antiphons are, I'll withdraw my objection to them.

[/quote]

I don't understand the difference in this context.

Are you saying you accept it when the antiphon uses a psalm that uses "I". But when there is a hymn based on the psalm that uses "I" you still object?


#9

When the Church says to quit using hymns from a first person singular, I will quit using them. I have no objection to the song in question, but I always try and stick with a Eucharistic-centered hymn for communion.


#10

pn, there is the first person singular and then there is the understood first person singular, like in Latin or Polish. (Phemie, how is it used in French?) In the English there seems to be no other way than to make it somewhat emphatic. In the languages where it’s understood, then not so much. Sometimes ego is used in the Latin, but then it’s to emphasize the first person, like when Christ uses the first person. Just saying.


#11

[quote="ProVobis, post:10, topic:320211"]
Sometimes ego is used in the Latin, ...

[/quote]

Can I quote you? :D

Actually, I understand your point. It is the old self, community or God centered question. You are saying, in English, a change in tense comes across more self-centered.


#12

[quote="pnewton, post:11, topic:320211"]
Can I quote you? :D

Actually, I understand your point. It is the old self, community or God centered question. You are saying, in English, a change in tense comes across more self-centered.

[/quote]

Something like that. We sort of had a similar discussion with the "credo," if you remember. It's in the first person singular alright but it's not all about "I" either.


#13

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