Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

Banalities, Bishop Clark: The Musical, and Proper Liturgical Music

October 8th, 2010, Promulgated by Abaccio

As you are all no doubt aware, the new (corrected) translation of the Missale Romanum comes into effect in Advent 2011. This signals a major defeat for the idiot-breeding “liturgists” who are still stuck in the 1960’s (see: Bp. Donald Trautperson, etc.) Why? Simply put, the new (corrected) translation brings REVERENCE and a SENSE OF THE SACRED back into the liturgy that is notably absent from the current lame-duck ICEL translation we’ve heard for decades. The people who oppose this new translation are the same people who think Confession, Eucharistic Adoration, and praying the Rosary are outdated customs with no spiritual purpose. They would have you loop aimlessly around a labyrinth instead.

The fact of the matter is that the “translators” (and I use that term loosely) made it up as they went along–DELIBERATELY. Their goal was not a faithful, authentic translation, but rather a political and theological statement. Don’t believe me? Try turning in the lame-duck ICEL translation in your first-year Latin class, and see how that works out. You’d be better off using Google Translator if you’d like a semi-correct English version of the Missale than you would the lame-duck ICEL translation. No, really, you would!

Do not take the fact that the new translation is passed to mean that improper liturgy will transform overnight when it is put into effect. Besides the obvious issue of a priest (and/or a congregation) ignoring the new (corrected) translation, there is certainly no guarantee that the music will improve.

If you’ve been to Mass at the Cathedral with Bishop Clark, you have likely heard him sing the horribly banal “Mass of Creation” setting. In semi-jest, upon returning from the Cathedral, one friend asked me why they don’t advertise more for “Bishop Clark, the Musical!” This setting is woefully irreverent. At the moment of Consecration, it sounds more like a showtune than a prayer. See the video below:

There have been some chant settings for the new translation released:

Note the difference.

This is not to say that those  very people responsible for the banalities you hear every Sunday have given up. Nope, they’re still around, still composing pure, unadulterated garbage. Take a listen to the new (and revised) horrors. The worst of the bunch, in my humble opinion, is the Gloria from Norah Duncan’s Unity Mass.  It sounds like the theme from various Charlie Brown movies. To listen, just click “new” above and you’ll see it-second setting down on the right.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.  This is not sacred music. This is not prayerful. This is not appropriate. This is not going to be used at Our Lady of Victory. But, I’m sorry to say, this probably will rear its ugly head around the Diocese.

BE PROACTIVE about this. Go to your pastor, or whomever, and humbly ask that they consider using chant settings rather than Peanuts etc. when they go to purchase musical settings for the new translation. If you don’t, you could very easily wind up with something like this as your Processional…erm…hymn

RECALL: Sacrosanctum Concilium, the Second Vatican Council’s Constitution on Liturgy states:

116. Ecclesia cantum gregorianum agnoscit ut liturgiae romanae proprium: qui ideo in actionibus liturgicis, ceteris paribus, principem locum obtineat.

116. The Church acknowledges Gregorian chant as specially suited to the Roman liturgy: therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services.”

After all, we want to follow in the CORRECT spirit of Vatican II

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5 Responses to “Banalities, Bishop Clark: The Musical, and Proper Liturgical Music”

  1. Nerina says:


    I don’t know whether to laugh or to cry. The Mass settings from the links you provided are absolutely dreadful but all too common in the DOR. I’ve been singing with the Latin Mass choir for 4 weeks and am having a harder and harder time going to Mass at our church given the musical proclivities of our choir director. To quote her, she once said that “no one is going to tell me how to do my job” when requests were made for more traditional hymns. Can you imagine the reaction to asking for Gregorian chant?

  2. Anonymous says:

    I go to OLV. I am so thankful to God that he has provided a truly Catholic church in this diocese.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Personally, I like the show tune hymn. After listening to both, I felt very at peace after listening to the first hymn. It was very prayerful to me.
    I felt like the second hymn made me feel distant from the idea of the Body of Christ. There were words I didn’t understand. And it made me feel like God was distant and not a God I could approach in prayer.

  4. Gen says:

    They aren’t hymns – they’re the Eucharistic chants (and that’s the operative word there, “chants”) which summon God down to our humble altars. He’s coming to us in majesty, not in some scene from Cats or the Music Man. Just because something appeals to us doesn’t mean it’s appropriate for Mass.

  5. Westsider says:

    Since we’re on the topic, I have to get this off my chest: I have no problem with Christian Rock music as a form of worship and praise OUTSIDE OF THE SACRED MASS. Let the rock bands play at parties, parish barbecues, fundraisers, or just for fun. A rock band has no place incorporated into the Sacred Liturgy. I do not want my Responsorial Psalm rocked out. I do not want my Opening Hymn have to be displayed on an overhead screen because nobody knows the lyrics, and when we do read the lyrics, find that they have little to do with the Mass (e.g., “Come as you are” – ?) Oy!!!

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