Tuesday, April 26, 2011


(Image credit)

This is just a hint. I'll say nothing more than this.

And now,

Some easter music.

This one is a fun game. Let's see if anyone can find the easter theme in this one.

Sunday, April 24, 2011


Surrexit a mortuis Christus Dei Filius, Pastor nobis de sepulchro, Alleluia!

Surrexit a mortuis, C.M. Widor.

Don't say anything about the music choice, It's GLORIOUS! It's proper. Happy easter, blessed paschaltide to everyone!

And here's some more organ music for you.

And here's some more choral music for you.

I'm kind of happy that the triddum is almost over ('Almost' because it does'nt technically end till vespers tonight.) I love it though. Passiontide and Holy week are my absolute favourite part of the entire liturgical. I'll miss it, since this was my last passiontide at home at my own parish. We did it up right though: Glorious choral music, well performed ceremonies, nice vestments, excellent preaching. All the right things. Thanks be to God, the bishop loved the music on Good Friday, and everyone loved the passion. I'll admit, that was my first time singing in front of people since I was 11, and I was scared witless. My knees were knocking, my hands were shaking, my heart was doing donuts in the driveway and I'm not entirely sure I was breathing at all for the first 5 minutes. If I sounded any good, all the credit goes to Colin Mawby and Stephen Cleobury. It was their choirs that I used to imitate to get a high, clear voice. I don't know if I succeeded, but I hope I did.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Spy Wednesday.

"Tráditor autem dedit eis signum, dicens : Quem osculátus fúero, ipse est, tenéte eum."

-Benedictus antiphon, Spy Wednesay.

Iudas mercator pessimus.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

On the Passion of Christ.

O Lord, let my soul rejoice in you and find joy in your salvation, as I reflect on your most consoling words, your second utterance from the Cross, "Amen I say to you, this day you will be with me in paradise". May these words, more tender because they came from you as you hung on your Cross, be often on my lips and still more often in my heart. Words addressed to me from the lips of my crucified Lord are most endearing and eloquent, and for this reason they merit more serious attention and profound reflection...

Let meditating on Jesus Christ and Him crucified be your daily prayer. Keep Jesus always before your eyes and keep ever near the foot of His Cross. Whether in life or death, enter the tomb with Jesus so that when Christ, who is your life, shall appear again, you will rise with Him in glory. Amen.

-Thomas a Kempis, On the Passion of Christ according to the Four Gospels.

I now have a new favourite church bulding.

Sorry, S.Cyprian's Clarence gate, you've been ousted. S.Mary's Wausau has topped you.

Monday, April 18, 2011

"Who is Christ if not the Word of God? "n the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" This Word of God was made flesh and dwelt among us. He had no power of himself to die for us: he had to take from us our mortal flesh. This was the way in which, though immortal, he was able to die; the way in which he chose to give life to mortal men: he would first share with us, and then enable us to share with him. Of ourselves we had no power to live, nor did he of himself have the power to die.
In other words, he performed the most wonderful exchange with us. Through us, he died; through him, we shall live.
The death of the Lord our God should not be a cause of shame for us; rather, it should be our greatest hope, our greatest glory. In taking upon himself the death that he found in us, he has most faithfully promised to give us life in him, such as we cannot have of ourselves."

-S.Augustine, homily, matins of Monday in Holy Week.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Liturgical and music Schedule for Holy Week, 2011

Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, West Philly.


Solemn mass, the maundy, and procession to the altar of repose at 7:30 PM

Entrance: Lift High the cross (Crucifer)

Kyrie and Gloria: Simple, after organ improvisation, organ is silenced till the vigil.

Psalm: Mode VIII
Acclamation: After mass XI

Proper antiphons from the Roman Gradual
Antiphons for the Maundy, Gregory A. Glenn

Ubi Caritas, M.Durufle
As Thou at Thy First Eucharist Didst Pray (Unde et Memores)

Sanctus: Simple chant.
Agnus Dei: David Isele, Holy Cross mass (In four parts)

Psalm with antiphon, Simple Gradual.
Panis Angelicus, Palestrina

Procession: Pange Lingua Gloriosi

Stripping of the altars: Antiphon 'Diviserunt' with psalm 21, monotone. (Tenors and basses)

Mass of the Presanctified at 3:00 PM

Psalm: Mode 2d
Gradual: Christus Factus est, Felice Anerio
The Passion: Tomas Luis de Victoria
Veneration of the cross:
O Crux Ave Spes Unica (Palestrina)
Improperia, Victoria
Crux Fidelis (Chant)
If needed: Sing, my tongue, the glorious battle.
Procession from the altar of repose:Adoramus te Christe, Palestrina
Crucifixus for 8 voices, Antonio Lotti
Ave Verum Corpus, William Byrd.

Vigil and first solemn mass of Easter at 8:00 PM

Psalms and canticles after the readings:The Canticle of Moses, sung to the gregorian tone 2.d. The Canticle of Isaiah, sung to tone 8.c. Psalm 19, sung to tone 2.d Psalm 42, sung to tone 7.d.

Gloria: Mass in B flat ('Little organ mass'), Franz Josef Haydn

Alleluia:Roman Gradual and psalm 118 in English.

At the baptisms: Faith,Hope, and Love, Alexander Peloquin.

Renewal of baptismal promises and sprinkling: Sicut Cervus, G.P. da Palestrina

Offertory: Cantique de Jean Racine, Gabriel Faure.

Proper antiphon and psalm,

Hymn: The Strife is O'er,
Ego sum Panis Vivus
, Josef Surzynski.

Antiphon to Our Lady: Regina Caeli, Gregor Aichinger

Recessional: Jesus Christ is Ris'n today.

Postlude. Worthy Is the Lamb (Handel, adapted from The Messiah)



I've been upgraded. Instead of singing in the chorus for the Victoria passion, now I'm singing the Chronista. :D I'm so excited and also scared. I mean, I Do want to do it, but I'm afraid to make a mistake in front of the pastor, my superior, the master of postulants, all the other brothers, the Bishop, and of course, a church with 200+ people. D:

But still, excited. I'll post the full holy week schedule and music schedule in about an hour.

Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion.

At the blessing of the Palms:
Ant: Hosanna to the Son of David

Let us pray.
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God,we pray thee, sanctify and bless + these palms with thy benediction, that we, who exultantly follow Christ the King,may through him arrive at the eternal Jerusalem.
Who liveth and reigneth.
Second prayer:

Let us pray.
INCREASE, we pray thee, O God, the faith of thy devoted people, and mercifully give ear to their humble supplications; that, they who this day honour the triumph of Christ by the carrying of palms, may through him offer unto thee the the fruit of good works.Who liveth and reigneth.
The palms are sprinkled and incensed.

V.Let us, imitating the acclaiming crowds, proceed in peace.
R.In the name of Christ. Amen.

Ant.Pueri Hebraeorum..portantes.

Ant.Pueri Hebraeorum...vestimenta

Hymn: Gloria, laus, et honor.

Responsory: Ingrediente Domino

Collect of the mass:

ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who hast given to mankind an example of humility to follow in Our Saviour's taking upon him flesh and suffering the death of the Cross: mercifully grant that by following the example of his patience, we may also merit to be made partakers of his resurrection. Through the same

Ritual Notes, Palm Sunday.

(A photo from last year's procession)
Rather than the 12:15 mass, there was an 11:30 solemn mass sung. There were two acolytes, a crucifer, a thurifer and boat-bearer, and all the rest of the servers in choro.One of the older servers has finally 'graduated', if that's the right word, from senior server to Master of ceremonies. He was in black cassock and lace surplice. He did an excellent job, by the way. Nice warm, sunny weather meant that the procession was outdoors as usual.

The blessing of the palms took place on the rectory porch. Six of the men of the choir sang an English adaptation of the chant 'Hosanna Filio David' (From the excellent book, By Flowing Waters) at the blessing of the palms. After the blessing of the palms and the reading of the gospel, the procession went from the rectory around the corner to the church, while the aforementioned mini-schola sang the chant 'Pueri Hebraeorum..portantes' in English with verses of psalm 24 to tone 2d. When the celebrant entered the church, 'All Glory Laud and Honour' was sung while he changed from a red cope to a red gothic chasuble and added the maniple.
This mass was celebrated ad orientem, so the incensing of the altar took place facing the reredos rather than the people. The main altar and side altars weren't decorated with palms alone, but also with olive branches. The collect was sung, and the readings read. The psalm was psalm 21. sung to an adaptation of the first psalm tone with an antiphon in the same mode.

The passion was read, with the celebrant taking the part of Christ, and two readers taking the part of the evangelist and the other parts. The congregation took the part of the crowd. And it was wonderful to see that no one that I could see sat down during the passion.The sermon was mercifully short.

After the prayers of the faithful, the altar was prepared in silence. Then the offertory hymn was My song is Love Unknown, sung to Love Unknown. The first verse was sung by the sopranos and altos, the second by the tenors and basses, the third in harmony,accompanied, the fourth in harmony accompanied, the fifth by sopranos and altos only, the sixth in harmony and the seventh in unison except with a descant and the contra bourdon 32' and 16' Pousaune in the pedal of the organ. After the celebrant in incensed, the M.C. was in incensed, and then the people.

The super oblata and preface were sung, with Sanctus I sung in Latin, with six torchbearers and a thurifer coming for the elevation.The Roman canon was used, and three bell rings at the elevations. The Per ipsum and Our Father were sung, and the peace given. Agnus Dei I was sung.During communion, there was a psalm with the communion antiphon, but I don't remember what the psalm was.

After the ablutions, the choir sang the motet Christus factus est pro nobis, by Felice Anerio .The post-communion prayer was sung, and afterwards, the prayer over the people and the blessing. The Ite was also sung. The recessional was O Sacred Head Surrounded, and the postlude was the prelude from BWV 549

Friday, April 15, 2011

Oh, okay, I get it:

It's all about you and what you want for yourself.

What a great example of priestly sacrifice and Christlike obedience. =/

These are our bishops hard at work, people.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


The office of Tenebrae will be sung at 7:00 pm AT Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic church using the traditional Roman rite.(Yeah, the one before John XXIII got his hands on the breviary and ruined things.) It will be sung with parts in Latin and parts in English.

The church is easily accesable by public transportation ( The 105,65,46 and G buses are nearby, as well as the 10 trolley and the R5 Paoli/Thorndale line on the train.) There is also a parking lot behind the parish school.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Passion Tuesday.

And I will pour out upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace, and of prayers: and they shall look upon me, whom they have pierced: and they shall mourn for him as one mourneth for an only son, and they shall grieve over him, as the manner is to grieve for the death of the firstborn.
-Zacharias 12:10

Monday, April 11, 2011

Ah, the crazies.

Sometimes, I like to read sites by delusional people, like that Traditio site. Whenever I think I have a radical opinion, I just browse their newsletter to see how ideology can blind people to the truth. It's kind of sad though, but there's nothing you can do about willful ignorance.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


..........Because the last thing we need are more pictures of celebrity saints like St.Jude.

The thing I miss most.

(Just in case any of you had gotten the idea that I still had some traces of sanity/normalcy left, I'll just clear that up right now.)

It's normal to miss things from home once you've left home, but, I think the thing I miss most os the most trivial things. I could miss daily life with the family, having more freedom, I could miss my foods or my old house or neighborhood. But, I think the thing I miss most is Ginger, my cat. I think it's because I never got to say goodbye. I came to visit, and then they just told me that they had gotten rid of her. I never found out where she was, whether she was okay, if she found a good family and if she was adjusting good. It's all shrouded in this uncertainty and uneasiness. Certainly, she probably would have gone naturally within a few years anyway. She's already 11 now, and her health has never been perfect. But I'm almost certain that the shock of me moving away and then her getting shipped off to some strange place after seven stable years in the same home with the same owner probably was'nt good for her.

Poor Ginger, she had to live as an abused cat and now this. These sort of things are always hard to understand unless you're a cat owner. People don't get them, even people who have their own pets.My mom reasons that I should just get over it because I would'nt have seen her much anyway, and besides, we still have Brutus and Diego. But it's not the same. Don't get me wrong, Brutus and Diego are great cats, and Brutus has the same personality as Ginger. (Maybe that's why he likes me best!) But, he's not Ginger.

So there, now that I've admitted that I miss my cat, an animal, a pet, you can finally check off the last check in the list for "Things that might make a person odd/eccentric/crazy".

En acetum, fel, arundo

Lo, with gall His thirst He quenches!
see the thorns upon His brow!
nails His tender flesh are rending!
see His side is opened now!
whence, to cleanse the whole creation,
streams of blood and water flow.

Faithful Cross!
above all other,
one and only noble Tree!
None in foliage, none in blossom,
none in fruit thy peers may be;
sweetest wood and sweetest iron!
Sweetest Weight is hung on thee!

Lofty tree, bend down thy branches,
to embrace thy sacred load;
oh, relax the native tension
of that all too rigid wood;
gently, gently bear the members
of thy dying King and God.

Tree, which solely wast found worthy
the world's Victim to sustain.
harbor from the raging tempest!
ark, that saved the world again!
Tree, with sacred blood anointed
of the Lamb for sinners slain.

Blessing, honor, everlasting,
to the immortal Deity;
to the Father, Son, and Spirit,
equal praises ever be;
glory through the earth and heaven
to Trinity in Unity. Amen.

-En acetum, fel, arundo(Hymn for lauds during passiontide) Translated by Fr.Caswall

Saturday, April 9, 2011


(Since people seem to like this one, I'll re-post it. And by 'people', and mean the two people who read this who both said they liked it.)

It's almost time.
Time is running short, and soon, our lenten disciplines will come to an end. It almost seems too short, really. We've spent these last days preparing for the greatest festival of the church year, the festival that the whole year anticipates.
But even before it, we have a mini-season for further preparation. We call it 'passiontide'. In it, we should seek to the best of our ability so draw away from the world and spend time with our lord, waiting with him as he prepares to fulfill all that was told of him. We have a week left to grow closer to our savior, and more importantly, to grow close to him in his passion, lest the horror and desolation of Good Friday and holy Saturday overtake us too much. And mother church assists us in our devotion.
For all the year, for all of lent, we've had the crucifix displayed as a help to our meditation on our Lord's passion, but now it is veiled. Now we must draw on the experience of a past life of prayer, without the aid of a visual reminder. In sorrow, the Queen of Saints and her court veil themselves to mourn our beloved Jesus, soon to die for us all.

Almost suddenly, the mass and divine office speak of the suffering of our lord rather than our lenten fasting and other disciplines. At the office, we sing the hymn 'Vexilla Regis Prodeunt' at vespers, and 'Pange Lingua Gloriosi...Certaminis' broken into parts for matins and lauds.
The short chapters at lauds and vespers speak of christ "Like a gentle Lamb led to slaughter"(Monday, Lauds) "suffering ouside the gate" and "bearing abuse" (Thursday, Vespers) and that "he was marred beyond human apearance"(Friday,Lauds). Even more, we are told that we "shall mourn, looking upon him whom they have pierced" (Tuesday, lauds)

And we hear more of why the chief priests and the crowds wanted to kill him. At Wednesday, the antiphon at lauds tells us that they wanted to kill him because he taught the truth. But who wants to suppress truth? What man of God would desire to suppress what is of God? Why would they not listen? As our lord asks in the antiphon at Friday's vespers, for which of his good works do they want to kill him? Christ himself explains, saying quite bluntly that the reason they do not listen and want to kill him because they are not of God.(Thursday, lauds)

And on Friday, we are given the tender commemoration of our sorrowful mother Mary, standing the foot of the cross. In the collect of this day in the new roman missal, which asks that we may imitate blessed Mary in devoutly contemplating Christ Crucified, we pray 'Grant we beseech you, the intercession of the same Virgin,that we might in these days adhere more firmly to your only Begotten Son, and come at last to the fullness of grace.' In some places, permission is even given to sing the Stabat Mater at the office.
These days. These last days before our lord is "offered as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to the father". (Wednesday, vespers.)
So the almost halcyon days of lent are fading away, and the more turbulent times of passiontide are nigh.
"O good cross, made beautiful by the body of the Lord, long have I desired thee, ardently have I loved thee, unceasingly have I sought thee, and now thou art ready for my eager soul. Receive me from among men and restore me to my Master, so that He, who redeemed me through thee, shalt receive me through thee. Amen."
-S.Andrew the apostle, before being crucified.

And speaking of singing again,

It's odd, my one vocal asset is the one I'm least proud of, least comfortable with using, and least useful. I'm a tenor, I've come to terms with that. My voice will never get any deeper. Yet, even though I'm a tenor, I have a pretty high range. I can sing counter tenor,though once I get above a certain G, I have trouble making sure that the sound is pure and not hooty or unsupported.

But, this kind of singing is pretty useless. It's not a useful asset. Besides, like I said, the tone is only pure up to a certain point. There are times when I can get it to stay pure higher but those are rare. Having a pure, clear voice has been the one thing I've been working on vocally for the past three years, even before I ever let even my parents know I was interested in singing again. I think I've achieved that, but at the expense of some other things.

Anyway, I'm practicing second tenor for This, since this has been added to the Good Friday music list. And I can die happy now, because with this triduum, I will have sung almost everything I've wanted to sing in my entire life.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Okay, time to admit something.

I miss my old office. Yes, even though I've said the new office every day of my life without using any other publication for about four years now, except when my breviary was stolen, I miss my old office. Because, I'll admit it, the new breviary in English is nothing like the new breviary in Latin. It's not. The Latin breviary, it's stately. Yes, it's Paul VI's new office, but it has this air of being ancient even though it is not

I think it's because, in the end, with all it's novelties, Paul VI latin office is a summation, or a collection of ancient offices. The best of many different rites and uses was taken and put together in the new office, hence, we have the Office of the Blessed Virgin from French usage, the common of Virgins from Pre-Pius V Roman usage, the common of martyrs from ancient Roman usage, the common of Holy Men taken from various commons for monks and abbots, as well as the Roman usage. Throughout the year, we have antiphons from Dominican and Sarum uses, hymns from the Ambrosian and Mozarabic rites, all held together with the stately and poetic prose of the reformed Vulgate psalter and scripture.

And yes, the new psalter is poetic. There's so much more poetry and beauty in 'Ut liberentur dilecti tui, salvum fac dextera tua et exaudi me' than in 'Come and deliver your friends,help with your right hand and reply'. Besides being inaccurate, look at the concepts which are eliminated: Each of us is God's 'beloved', we are saved by God, not helped, He hears us. There is so much more beauty in 'Confitebor tibi,quia mirabiliter plasmatus sum; mirabiliter opera tua, et anima mea cognoscit nimis' than in 'I thank you for the winders of my being, for the wonders of all your creation.'

Entire parts are lost in the English translation as well. In the tranlsation, there's nothing about 'Throni,dominationes, principatus, potestatus'- Thrones, dominions, principalities, powers- The whole theology of the choirs of angels is cut out of the canticle for Wednesdays. There's also familiarity. I'm no scholar, no saint, no person of special talents. But the liturgy has been impressed on my mind after years of praying it, and I'm familiar with 'Dominus regnavit, decorum indutus est', but I could'nt tell you what that same psalm is in the current translation. I know 'Ego dixi: Domine, miserere mei, sana animam meam, quia peccavi tibi', but I could'nt tell you that responsory. There's an arsenal of psalms and psalm verses that through repetition have just gotten memorised- Deus misereatur nostri et benedicat nobis, Miserere mei Deus, Dixit Dominus, Qui pascis Israel intende- now all that's gone. And what's worse is that, because so many concepts don't exist in the current translation, all those beautiful concepts and affections and prayers which used to be able to draw from the psalms are now all gone.

The hymns are gone too. No longer will there be passiontides singing the royal triumph of the cross of Christ our king, no more recounting his 'Thirty years among us dwelling', No more praising the 'Trinity of Blessed light, the Unity of princely might.' Gone is 'Glorious Lady, throned in rest' of the office of the blessed virgin, and no more of the new eve of 'Quod Eva Tristis Abstulit'. I figured it would not be a big change, but it is. I find the current translation of the office to be flat- It's less of a translation than a faulty paraphrase. I say 'faulty', because entire concepts are gone, things are moved about or deleted, seemingly at random. So much so that S.Augustine's commentary on the psalms so often looses it's sense, because what he says is not what the breviary says at all.

Wednesday,week IV

O GOD, who dost grant unto the righteous the reward of their godliness, and unto sinners that turn unto thee with fasting their offenses: have compassion, we beseech thee, upon thy humble servants: that we, confessing the sins which we have committed, may obtain of thee the remission of all our sins.

Monday, April 4, 2011