2nd Sunday of Lent (Year B, 2012)

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Entrance Kyrie Eleison (Marty Haugen)
Kyrie Mass XVII
Gloria (none)
Psalm Ps 115 (McCarthy/Bévenot)
Gospel Acclamation Glory and Praise (mcb)
Prayers of Intercession Lord, in your mercy (John Bell)
Preparation of the Gifts Hear my prayer, O Lord (Henry Purcell, 1659-1695)
Sanctus, Acclamation, Amen Mass XVII
Agnus Dei Mass XVII & Missa Brevis (Antonio Lotti, c. 1667–1740)
Communion Be still, for the presence of the Lord (David Evans)
Postcommunion (silence)
Recessional Be thou my vision

The entrance antiphon, from Ps 24(25) included the words

Remember your compassion, O Lord,
and your merciful love

Marty Haugen’s Kyrie Eleison is an extended plea for the same mercy, with thoughtful words for the cantor sung over the ostinato Kyrie refrain:

In my song and in my silence
In my faith and in my doubting
In my courage and my weakness
I call upon you, God.

For the Gospel of the Transfiguration, we had Be still, for the presence. We don’t very often have a hymn at Communion; it’s a much better time to ask the people to sing a short refrain from memory rather than to carry a hymn book or service sheet with them in procession and to read while processing. But this one is short enough that it served more like a prelude to Communion rather than an accompaniment to it, and most people had put down their sheets before it was time for them to process.

Henry Purcell’s powerful and atmospheric anthem for eight voices is thought to be the opening fragment of an incomplete longer work. I wonder what we missed out on, and indeed what further masterpieces we might have been given if Purcell had lived beyond the age of thirty-six?

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