Propers of the Mass


#1

I had a thought today. Most if not almost all parishes never use the Propers of the Mass. Instead they will choose a hymn. I once asked the liturgy director of the parish about using the Vatican II Hymnal which includes the Propers. She said that they didn't want it because it is permanent and they can't change the content like the Breaking Bread hymnal does by printing new books every year. It led me to ask myself today, if they are worried about "the changing needs of the church", then why have I been hearing the same hymns for the past 20 years?


#2

I don't understand it either. There are many different chant settings for the Propers, so the argument that you want a new one from time to time doesn't fly.


#3

[quote="smndtupidisaftr, post:1, topic:308169"]
It led me to ask myself today, if they are worried about "the changing needs of the church", then why have I been hearing the same hymns for the past 20 years?

[/quote]

very good question :)


#4

The parish at which I am the organist and cantor for two of the Masses has just started using the Vatican II Hymnal at the beginning of advent, and I love it!!

About propers, I NEVER saw antiphons being used in the Mass or even knew what one was until I came to my current parish, where they have me sing three every Sunday. It makes me wonder why so many parishes omit them, along with incense.


#5

We sing the propers in English; the antiphons and the verses are powerful!


#6

I assume that the OP means, by use of the word propers, the antiphons of a particular Mass. But the term *propers of the Mass *includes the collect, prayer over the gifts and post-comunion prayer, as well as the readings and antiphons.


#7

[quote="smndtupidisaftr, post:1, topic:308169"]
I had a thought today. Most if not almost all parishes never use the Propers of the Mass. Instead they will choose a hymn. I once asked the liturgy director of the parish about using the Vatican II Hymnal which includes the Propers. She said that they didn't want it because it is permanent and they can't change the content like the Breaking Bread hymnal does by printing new books every year. It led me to ask myself today, if they are worried about "the changing needs of the church", then why have I been hearing the same hymns for the past 20 years?

[/quote]

Well, the option to sing a liturgical hymn is a valid option, so, it becomes a matter of deciding which to chose from. And like many such choices in the liturgy, once one choice is done often enough, it becomes the default option and people don't even think about the other choice any more.

The advantage of a yearly hymnal, such as Breaking Bread, is that if a song is worthy to keep doing for 20 years, it stays in the hymnal, and if not, it drops out. And newer composed songs can be added.


#8

[quote="O_Moriah, post:7, topic:308169"]
........
The advantage of a yearly hymnal, such as Breaking Bread, is that if a song is worthy to keep doing for 20 years, it stays in the hymnal, and if not, it drops out. And newer composed songs can be added.

[/quote]

Well at my parish at least, more than 1000 years of Catholic musical tradition dropped out, virtually overnight. :eek:
I guess that this music was just not "worthy to keep doing".
:(


#9

[quote="O_Moriah, post:7, topic:308169"]
Well, the option to sing a liturgical hymn is a valid option, so, it becomes a matter of deciding which to chose from. And like many such choices in the liturgy, once one choice is done often enough, it becomes the default option and people don't even think about the other choice any more.

The advantage of a yearly hymnal, such as Breaking Bread, is that if a song is worthy to keep doing for 20 years, it stays in the hymnal, and if not, it drops out. And newer composed songs can be added.

[/quote]

And like many options in the liturgy, they're all licit, but some are highly superior to others. For example, you CAN sing the same responsorial psalm every day of ordinary time. That doesn't mean you should. You CAN replace the words of God in the propers with the words of men, but that doesn't mean you should.

Option 1, is option 1 for a reason, and option 4 is option 4 for a reason, don't ya know.


#10

[quote="superamazingman, post:9, topic:308169"]
Option 1, is option 1 for a reason, and option 4 is option 4 for a reason, don't ya know.

[/quote]

No, I don't know. An option listed first is not necessarily the preferred option. If that was the case, the a legislator would be stuck promulgating two equal choices, because whatever they listed first would get interpreted by everyone as the preferred. And so, that's not how listing of options work. We are to presume all options are equal unless the text says otherwise.

Or, if we go by your interpretation of options then presiders should always be choosing the Preface I for Sundays? And Preface I for Weekdays? And always Eucharistic Prayer I, even for weekdays? After all, they're the first-listed options.


#11

[quote="smndtupidisaftr, post:1, topic:308169"]
She said that they didn't want it because it is permanent and they can't change the content like the Breaking Bread hymnal does by printing new books every year.

[/quote]

What she said is pretty lame. The propers change every week, some don't come around for three years (depending on the year of the cycle), and at certain times like the last week of Advent, the propers change daily. If you want variety, the propers is the way to ensure that you almost always only hear the same propers once a year at most. On the other hand my experience with hymnals in parishes is that they keep coming back round to the favourites much more frequently.

And why the heck would anyone want to change the content of the propers? They're almost all scripture or psalm verses. :shrug:

[quote="Enim, post:5, topic:308169"]
We sing the propers in English; the antiphons and the verses are powerful!

[/quote]

Stands to reason, almost every antiphon and verse is from scripture. Chant was, in fact, meant to enhance the Word. The Word is supposed to take precedence over the melody.


#12

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