17th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B, 2009)

Entrance All who hunger, gather gladly (tune: Blaenwern)
Kyrie Kyrie Eleison from Missa Ubi Caritas (Bob Hurd)
Gloria Missa Ubi Caritas
Psalm The Eyes of Everyone (mcb)
Gospel Acclamation Easter Alleluia
Preparation of the Gifts There is one Lord (Jacques Berthier)
Sanctus, Acclamation, Amen Missa Ubi Caritas
Agnus Dei Missa Ubi Caritas
Communion Now in this banquet (Marty Haugen)
Postcommunion A Clare Benediction (Rutter)
Recessional Now thank we all our God

The Taizé chant There is One Lord, with its cantor’s verses, chimes exactly with today’s second reading, which was also the basis for Fr Frank’s homily. So it felt like a good choice. We usually sing Taizé pieces during communion, since the short memorable refrains are good processional material. It was good to sing one today that didn't have to be gentle and contemplative! Though I suppose it’s a failure of my imagination to think that all communion songs need to be quiet thoughtful ones.

Our opening hymn, with its text by Sylvia Dunstan, was another good new discovery from Laudate, and just right for today’s Gospel story of the feeding of the five thousand.

Today was the choir’s last Sunday until September – we take a welcome break during the month of August. Musical selections for the next few Sundays are in the hands of The Management, who may keep us posted here if he gets his computer fixed!

16th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B, 2009)

Entrance Praise we our God with joy
Kyrie Kyrie II (Alan Rees)
Gloria Glory to God in the Highest (John Bell)
Psalm Ps 22 (Fintan O’Carroll)
Gospel Acclamation Here in our Midst (Peter Jones)
Preparation of the Gifts The living God my shepherd is
Sanctus, Acclamation, Amen Mass of Christ the King (mcb)
Agnus Dei Lamb of God II (mcb)
Communion Dona nobis pacem cordium (Jacques Berthier)
Postcommunion Flocks in Pastures Green (J. S. Bach)
Recessional Lord of all hopefulness

It's not long at all since we last had a Sunday with a strong “shepherd” theme, but we found a whole different set of musical expressions for it. As well as the Bach and He like a shepherd true in verse two of Praise we our God with joy, we had The living God my shepherd is, with words by one J. Driscoll SJ (of the British Jesuit province, d. 1940, it says somewhere – anyone know any more?), and sung to the tune of Brother James's Air by James Leith MacBeth Bain (1840-1925). These are better words for this tune than the more familiar The Lord’s my shepherd, since there's no need to repeat the third and fourth lines of each verse. Another pleasing new discovery in the pages of Laudate.

Dona nobis pacem from Taizé has a verse for cantor setting some of the text from Sunday’s second reading from Ephesians:

Christ is our peace, making us one.
In his own person, he destroyed hostility,
He came and preached the good news of peace.

15th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B, 2009)

Entrance Before the heaven and earth
Kyrie Kyrie Eleison (Dinah Reindorf)
Gloria Missa Latina (Daniel Bath)
Psalm Let us see, O Lord, your mercy (Alan Smith)
Gospel Acclamation Alleluia Mode 2 (Plainchant)
Preparation of the Gifts God has chosen me (Bernadette Farrell)
Sanctus, Acclamation, Amen Mass of Christ the King (mcb)
Agnus Dei from Communion Rite: Take and Eat (Michael Joncas/Gary Daigle)
Communion I am the true and living bread (Martin Barry/Diane Murden)
Postcommunion O Salutaris Hostia (No. 3 in F) (Elgar)
Recessional Forth in thy name

A difficult week to plan for, I found, perhaps because I couldn't find a lot in our repertoire to match the texts of Sunday’s readings and propers. We settled on two items reflecting the sending out of the twelve in the day’s Gospel reading. One was our recessional hymn, Forth in thy name, the other Bernadette Farrell’s God has chosen me, minus the bongo solo, alas (we did it one year, when one of our choral scholars was a percussionist), but with the three-part a cappella close harmony for the women’s voices in the verses. Everyone sang the refrains.

Alan Smith’s psalm setting was from Psalm Songs, and for the Gospel Acclamation we had the mode 2 chant setting that comes up many times in the year (including the feast of Ss Peter and Paul), and features in Decani Music’s Cantate.

Elgar’s O Salutaris Hostia – his third setting of the same text – dates from his early years, when he was still involved with Catholic liturgical music. He probably wrote it when he was twenty-three, but there are plenty of touches that hint at the future composer of the Enigma Variations or Gerontius, at least for a choir willing to ham it up. Like we did.

14th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B, 2009)

Today was First Holy Communion for the children of the parish, and the choir had the day off, to let the children from the parish primary school provide music for the Mass. We're back next week!