Should we sing patriotic songs during Mass?

In particular, what is the thinking of the church with regards to singing the “Battle Hymn of the Republic” during Mass?


The “Battle Hymn of the Republic” is not a hymn in the liturgical sense. It’s context is the American Civil War–from which it emurged. It has NO place as a substitute for a hymn in the liturgy–even though it was used as a recessional (rather than a more appropriate Eucharistic hymn) on an internationally televised Mass recently.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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