Corpus Christi Et Musica Sacra

11 Jun

I love listening to Gregorian Chant. I also love listening to Byzantine Chant. In fact my “Rock Music” is Gregorian Chant. Having learned how to read Latin at Age 7 in the 2nd Grade in my Native Land, Brooklyn, NY, in an area within spitting distance of Queens, in the Eastern Part of the Borough of Brooklyn, learning a touch of Greek, such as the “Kyrie”, truly makes for a Catholic Experience.

I listened to the Homily from a Priest of Italian Extraction, a Native of the Eastern Part of Brooklyn called Cypress Hills. He spoke of The Eucharist as Greater than anything Temporal.
The Homily was well spoken. The Music was Sublime.

At the End of Mass, The Corpus Christi Procession began with The Monstrance carrying the Consecrated Host(The Body Of Christ, With Only The Sensible Qualities Remaining) to Three Stations around The Parish Church, a rather large Parish Church at the Corner of Ascan Avenue and Queens Boulevard, in the Neighborhood called Forest Hills.

The Utterly Sublime Hymn, “Pange Domine” was sung on the way to the Old Convent, in Latin. It is most often heard on Holy Thursday on the 1st Night of The Easter Triduum, when the Body of Christ is transferred to a Repository away from the Main Altar. For those who grew up in the Roman/Latin Rite after 1969, this Hymn is a link with The Roman/Latin Rite of Pre Vatican Council II.

It was from The Old Convent to the Rectory when the Post Vatican Council II Church was represented by a Hymn, which was selected as the Official Hymn of The International Eucharistic Congress in 1976 in Philadelphia during The USA Bicentennial. The Late Richard Kreutz authored this Hymn. It is called “Gift Of Finest Wheat” and has a more “Ecumenical” Feel to it, as it is sung in Lutheran, Anglican and Methodist Ecclesial Communities, but does state Eucharistic Catholic Theology, despite having None Of The Awe of “O Sacrament Most Holy.”

I have a Most Dear Friend. She is a Convert from Eastern Orthodoxy. She despises the Modern Music of Post Vatican II. I cannot blame her, especially since I have been going to the Tridentine Latin Mass of The Roman Missal of Pope St. John XXIII. Via the Younger Latin Mass Attendees, I also feel at Home in The Byzantine Rite Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Patriarch Of Constantinople and Doctor of The Church, with the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church In Union With The Holy See in The Vatican. In neither the Tridentine Latin Mass of 1962, nor the Byzantine Rite Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, will you hear any of the Modern Music of the Post Vatican II Church.

What I will say is that “Gift Of Finest Wheat” throws the Tempo off, whenever Gregorian Chant is sung. I know that “Gift Of Finest Wheat”, a Hymn of the Post Vatican II Church Era, is rare in that it isn’t a Song of Sheer Self like a few of the “Bread Songs” which My Most Dear Friend has Utter Contempt for, but “Gift Of Finest Wheat” is not in utter opposition to Catholic Eucharistic Theology.
To use a more Earthly Comparison, it is like trying to make a crème sauce with Skim Milk. Hence, there goes the recipe. Modern should go with Modern, while Classic goes with Classic and Never The Twain Shall Meet.

At the Final Station at the Entrance to the Church, “Beneditio” was offered as it is on Thursdays at 7:30PM, with “Tantum Ergo, Sacramentum”, sung in Latin, with the Prayers offered in English, as they have been since 1st Friday in 1964, when “Tantum Ergo” was 1st offered in Vernacular. The Divine Praises were offered.

Processing to the Main Altar, “Holy God We Praise Thy Name” was sung.

All went well.

A Word Of Caution that Modern and Classical work only in This World and Not The Ecclesial Next World.

Deo Gratias



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