1st Sunday of Advent (Year C, 2009)

Entrance Awake, awake, fling off the night
Kyrie Lord, show us your mercy (mcb)
Psalm To you, O Lord, I lift my soul (Marty Haugen)
Gospel Acclamation Advent Gospel Acclamations (Alan Smith)
Preparation of the Gifts There is a longing in our hearts (Anne Quigley)
Sanctus, Acclamation, Amen Mass XVIII (in English) & Missal tones
Agnus Dei (Alan Rees)
Communion Wait for the Lord (Taizé)
Postcommunion Conditor Alme Siderum (Victoria)
Recessional Love divine, all loves excelling

Today’s Gospel Acclamation, from Psalm 84(85), is also found in the second form of the Penitential Rite: the former has Let us see, O Lord, your mercy, and give us your saving help; for the latter we sang, in dialogue between the celebrant and people: Lord, show us your mercy and love, and grant us your salvation.

For the Gospel Acclamation itself we sang Alan Smith’s energetic and spiky setting from the collection Baptised with Fire, very obligingly rewritten (in a small way) to make it, in my reckoning, more accessible for the singing assembly. (The rewrite involved ironing out a couple of the semiquavers in the refrain.) The remaining three Sundays of Advent will tell whether our assembly takes it to heart. I hope so: it’s a good one, and another useful addition to that slender body of work, liturgical music which both challenges the choir and properly involves the assembly.

The musical setting for the new translation of the Sanctus proposed by ICEL is an adaptation of Mass XVIII from the Kyriale. By way of laying the groundwork for introducing the new text in its proper musical garb when the time comes, we’re singing a version with the existing text during Advent. It’s slightly different from the current version in the English Missal, adapted to preserve more of the melodic contour of the Latin original, the way the proposed setting of the new ICEL text does. Hopefully it will soon become second nature for our assembly.

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