12th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C, 2010)

Entrance Praise to the holiest
Kyrie Kyrie for 3 voices, adapted from William Byrd (mcb)
Gloria Coventry Gloria (Peter Jones)
Psalm Ps 62: For you my soul is thirsting (author unknown)
Gospel Acclamation Salisbury Alleluia (Christopher Walker)
Preparation of the Gifts Your love is finer than life (Marty Haugen)
Sanctus, Acclamation, Amen German Mass (Franz Schubert, arr. Richard Proulx)
Agnus Dei Hurd Mass (Bob Hurd)
Communion The eyes of everyone (mcb)
Postcommunion Oculi Omnium (Charles Wood, 1866-1926)
Recessional At the Lamb’s high feast

We heard the words of Psam 62(63) twice, once in Marty Haugen’s fine setting with three-part close harmony for the women’s voices in the verses, and once in today’s responsorial psalm.

We sang the latter to an Anglican psalm tone - a rare venture for us into a sound-world quite different from our more usual style, namely tones by, or in the style of, Laurence Bévenot. Bévenot’s psalm tones are inspired by the Gregorian modes, though with a simpler termination (cadence) at the end of each line than in the Gregorian tones themselves. Anglican chant, by comparison, is both more elaborate and more formulaic at the ends of the lines, and the task in rehearsal was to make light of the cadences, so as not to find ourselves repeatedly subordinating the natural speech rhythms to those of the music.

I’m not sure who wrote the tone we used. We were singing from a manuscript copy found gathering dust in the choir’s music library. Choir members who move in the right circles said it was a well-known Anglican tone, but between us we weren’t able to pinpoint it.

The setting of the Kyrie was an adaptation by me of the Kyrie from the Byrd Mass for Three Voices, expanded (chiefly by repetition) to accommodate the third form of the Penitential Rite. Click here to download a copy, which you’re most welcome to print out and make use of.

The first reading today from Zechariah, and the Gospel reading, both talked of our Lord’s suffering. The stark prophecy: they will look on the one whom they have pierced prompted the choice of our final hymn of thanksgiving –

At the Lamb’s high feast we sing
Praise to our victorious King,
Who hath washed us in the tide
Flowing from his pierced side.

[update 26/6/10: fixed the link to the Kyrie.]


  1. Who wants Sibelius's Scorch? Not I, since this programme has caused problems to my computer in the past and I have had to uninstall it. The kindly donated file is therefore unreadable, alas. If you were to post it as a PDF, that would be much more accessible.

  2. To my mind it's an important issue. Publishers large and small of Catholic liturgical music haven't yet satisfactorily embraced the technology which would allow ordinary parish musicians (a) to sample before buying and (b) to buy the items they need rather than expensive collections, most of whose contents might turn out to be superfluous to the needs of the community in question. Scorch and its imitators meet this need better than PDFs, and few people I know of have ever complained about its reliability. (Besides, have you ever tried posting a PDF to a blog? :-) )

    On the other hand, anything for a prince of the Church! Send me an e-mail address and I'll happily provide a PDF. Just don't tell anyone.