Saturday the 31st of July

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“We need a respectful, mutual listening, free of ideology and predetermined agendas.” Pope Francis, Let us Dream, December 2020

Fighting over liturgy distorts purpose of Mass, papal liturgist says

When a choir director and parish priest differ over liturgical music, the choir should follow in good faith the wishes of the priest for the sake of unity, said the papal liturgist.

When it comes to celebrating the liturgy, “we should never fight,” Mgr Guido Marini told choir members, directors and priests. “Otherwise, we distort the very nature” of what the people of God should be doing during the Mass, which is seeking to be “one body before the Lord.”

The papal master of liturgical ceremonies spoke at a conference opening a three-day jubilee for choirs on 21st October. Hundreds of people involved in providing music for the liturgical celebrations in Italian dioceses and parishes – such as singers, organists and musicians – attended, as did directors of diocesan liturgy offices and schools of sacred music.

During a brief question-and-answer period after his talk on the role of the choir, a participant asked Msgr. Marini what she termed “an uncomfortable, practical question.”

“Many times, in our parishes, the priest wants the choir to perform songs that are inappropriate, both because of the text” and because of the moment the song is to be performed during the service, she said.

Picture: Mgr Guido Marini, papal master of ceremonies, assists Pope Francis during a Marian vigil in St Peter’s Square at the Vatican on 8th October. Mgr Marini said Catholics should never fight over liturgical music. (CNS photo/Paul Haring).