A Note from the Parish Coordinator of Music Ministry and Liturgy:
Hello Parish Community of OLPH-St. Agnes,
As you may already know, the Mass Settings (also known as the Service Music) change with each liturgical season at our parish. A “Mass Setting” consists of the Gloria, Holy, Mystery of Faith, Great Amen, and Lamb of God. Although daily hymns may vary between the two churches, both Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church and St. Agnes Church will now consistently use the same mass setting each liturgical season. As we transition out of Ordinary Time and move into Lent, we will be using the chants set by the International Commission on English in the Liturgy. ICEL is a mixed commission of Catholic Bishops' Conferences in countries where English is used in the celebration of the Sacred Liturgy according to the Roman Rite. These chants are standard across the United States are are commonly known amongst Catholics. Conveniently, they are found in our Breaking Bread hymnal/missal and can be found at the beginning of the book in “The Order of Mass” section starting with the “Holy” on page 14.
On another note, during this season of Lent, you may notice a significant decrease in the volume and amount of organ/piano used during the mass. The reason for this can be found in the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) published by the USCCB. It states that “313...In Lent the playing of the organ and musical instruments is allowed only to support the singing. Exceptions are Laetare Sunday (Fourth Sunday of Lent), Solemnities, and Feasts.” For this reason, we will not sing meditation hymns after communion in Lent and there will be no organ preludes, interludes, or postludes. Using the ICEL chants also supports this as the chants utilize minimal instrumental accompaniment while also connecting us with the musical heritage of our Catholic faith.
As with all the parts of the mass, congregational participation is essential and necessary, so we encourage you to sing the hymns and chants loud and proud at all times as a testament of praise to our Lord.
Thank you all for your continued dedication and support to the Music Ministry of OLPH-St. Agnes. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions.
Patrick B. Phillips, Coordinator of Music Ministry and Liturgy