Orthodox

Do the orthodox ever use latin (western) hymns for your cantors ir in non lturgical/litirgical celebrations?

I don’t think so generally, but OTOH, I did hear some western Christmas carols sung in an Orthodox Church at a Christmas celebration.

In my experience, that’s about all you’ll find in an Eastern Orthodox parish. The parish I attend in Chicago even translated Christmas carols like “Silent Night” & some others into liturgical Greek.

In the Western Rite of the Church, you’ll find plenty. The parish in Detroit that came from a Lutheran group probably still sings “A Mighty Fortress is our God” (I’m just guessing; if the song says something like “don’t forget there are only two sacraments,” then that’s out), because the Western Rite parish in Washington that I attend sings hymns penned by Anglican & Catholic authors.

In my time as a psaltis (the Greek Orthodox equivalent of a cantor, who only chants Byzantine Chant) in the GOA, we never did any western music. If we were asked to chant anything after liturgy for the distribution of the antidoron, we would always either chant a psalm, a kalophonic heirmos, a kratema, seasonal apolytikia and kontakia, and the like (so even for Christmas, no Christmas Carols, just hymns like η γέννησίς σου Χριστέ, η παρθένος σήμερον, maybe a kalophonic heirmos like Χριστός γεννάται, etc.) Perhaps we just had a very conservative group of psaltes or something, so no guarantees that my experience is typical of the GOA. Now in Greece herself, I would be surprised if they ever used Western hymns. The cantors in Greece would probably refuse to sing even Greek Christmas Carols in church, much less Western ones.

Now as for the highly Westernized choirs the Greeks have exclusively in America (the OP only asked about cantors, so I gave my two cents as a psaltis), that’s an entirely different story.

So do the choirs ever sig western songs, that are stil rwverent, im not talking about the modern “sing a new church” songs many latins use now, but te more reverent amd lassical ones

In liturgy? No, never. That is considered an abuse, since the hymns for liturgy are set, and abrogating them is not an option. Outside of liturgy? Maybe some Christmas Carols at Christmastide. In general, Western hymns have no real place in Orthodoxy, because the hymns to be used for any day of the year are already set by the Typikon, and there is no option to substitute some other hymn for them. So even after the liturgy, during the distribution of the antidoron, (with the exception of Christmas carols, which everybody will know) you are not going to hear something like “pange lingua” being sung, because there is no occasion to use it in liturgy, and none of the faithful therefore would be familiar with such a hymn.

It’s just like how you will probably never hear the double canon for Christmas (beginning with the troparion «Χριστὸς γεννᾶται») sung in any Western church for Christmas. Most Western Christians probably have no idea that a hymn beginning with “Christ is born, glorify him” exists, just as most of the Orthodox have no idea that a hymn titled “pange lingua” exists.

Does anyone kow if this is true for byzantine catholics

It probably depends on how Latinized the parish is. I would recommend asking this is the forum dedicated entirely to Eastern Rite Catholicism.

So you dont have any hyms that change, like processional hymns, or outrance hymns?

They change in that they aren’t always the same from day to day. However, the liturgical rubrics specify which hymns we should use so we just follow that.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.