Restoring Sacred Music

Rich has spoken at a university level on this topic.

The Church’s worship must necessarily be ordered to giving glory to God, while it sanctifies and edifies Christian souls. For these two reasons the Church has always striven towards excellence in her worship; encouraging & upholding the development of the highest quality in art forms used in her worship, of which sacred music has a critical role. In short: holy things must be done in a holy way! Unfortunately, today, our liturgical music has digressed from the guidelines established by the Church for sacred music, guidelines few are aware of.

Benedict XVI (as Cardinal Ratzinger): "The years which followed the Council witnessed the increasingly grim impoverishment which follows when beauty for its own sake is banished from the Church and all is subordinated to the principle of 'utility.' One shudders at the lackluster face of the post-conciliar liturgy as it has become, or one is bored with its banality and its lack of artistic standards."

Cardinal Arinze, prior prefect of Divine Worship & the Discipline of the Sacraments, noted that ... Our hymns are poor in theological content, not firmly rooted in Tradition, have little or no scriptural overtones and do not build up the faith of those that sing or listen to them.

Pope St. John Paul II echoed the same in his 2004 Letter on Sacred Music:

"... sacred music today has undergone such a broadening of meaning as to include repertoire that cannot enter into the celebration without violating the spirit & the norms of the Liturgy itself"

In this series of talks, Rich will review what the Church guidelines are for sacred music, explore how historically we got to where we are today, the reasons why we need to reform our liturgical music, identify more specifically the issues with the hymns we do sing, and, lastly, what we can do practically speaking to correct the situation.

It is a must for any music ministry or parish liturgical committee.