The Byzantine Forum
Newest Members
Isaac14, MagdalenaRuth, gepaul, Thomas Taylor, samson
5,668 Registered Users
Who's Online Now
1 members (son of the desert), 149 guests, and 213 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Latest Photos
Byzantine Nebraska
Byzantine Nebraska
by orthodoxsinner2, December 11
Church of the Holy Trinity (UGCC) - Brazil
Church of the Holy Trinity (UGCC) - Brazil
by Santiago Tarsicio, March 17
Papal Audience 10 November 2017
Papal Audience 10 November 2017
by JLF, November 10
Upgraded Russian icon corner
Upgraded Russian icon corner
by The young fogey, October 20
Russian Greek Catholic Global Congress
Russian Greek Catholic Global Congress
by likethethief, June 12
Forum Statistics
Forums26
Topics34,893
Posts412,955
Members5,668
Most Online3,380
Dec 29th, 2019
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
John
Member
OP Offline
John
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
Father Robert Taft, S.J. Rejects Revising the Divine Liturgy

In his new book, “A History of the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Volume VI, The Communion, Thanksgiving, and Concluding Rites” (2008, Orientalia Christiana Analecta, 281, Pontificio Instituto Orientale) Father Robert Taft, S.J. clearly and loudly rejects the idea of revising the Divine Liturgy. He does not speak directly to the Ruthenian Revised Divine Liturgy by name, but he does not have to as it is crystal clear that it would be included. I myself have no doubt that is speaking directly to Pittsburgh, as Pittsburgh is the only Church to have issued such a major liturgical reform.

Here is an excerpt from the conclusion. Text in red was emphasized by me.


CONCLUSION - by Father Robert Taft, S.J.

Ι do not intend to provide this massive volume with the customary sort of general conclusion, and that for several reasons. First of all, because each chapter and excursus ends with a reasonably detailed conclusion summarizing its yield, and there is no need to repeat here what Ι have already said there. Secondly, Ι deliberately eschew offering detailed pastoral recommendations for possible liturgical restoration and renewal as Ι had done in the conclusion to previous volumes. For Ι have learned to my consternation that some readers have taken such reflections as a license to exercise their "liturgical creativity" by introducing on my authority changes into the liturgical service.

Οn the contemporary mania for "liturgical creativity" Ι can only repeat what Ι wrote years ago:

... the first spontaneity and creativity of Christian worship is that of hearts and minds freely raised to God in love and song and prayer... Ι must let the liturgy speak for itself instead of trying to make it speak for me, instead of exploiting it as medium of self-expression. Like medieval cathedrals, liturgies were created not as monuments to human creativity, but as acts of worship. The object of worship is not self-expression, not even self-fulfillment, but God. ''He must increase, Ι must decrease," John the Baptist said of Jesus (Jn 3:30), and that is an excellent principle for liturgical ministers ... Furthermore, most people are not especially creative in any other aspect of their existence, and there is no reason to think that they will be when it comes to liturgy. They can, however, be drawn to participate in a common heritage far nobler and richer than the creation of anyone of us individually. What we need is not further to reinvent the wheel, not to reshape our liturgy every time we read a new article, but just to take what we have and use it very well. (Quoting BEW 300).

What Gerhard Delling has said of worship on the phenomenological/ epistemological level is even more true on the existential: not only in worship is religion known; it is through worship that it is fed and lives:

Worship is the self-portrayal of religion. In worship the sources by which religion lives are made visible, is expectations and hopes are expressed, and the forces which sustain it are made known. In many respects the essence of a religion is more directly intelligible in its worship then in statements of its basic principles or even in descriptions of its sentiments. (Worship in the New Testament (London 1961) xi

So the liturgical tradition of a Church is the story of a people at prayer, the Church’s ideal model of worship to which I must rise, not something I am invited to reduce to the level of my own banality.

Pages 785-786.

Joined: Aug 2003
Posts: 396
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Aug 2003
Posts: 396
This excerpt confuses me. Didn't he approve the revised liturgy of the Ruthenians? Is he saying something different now?

Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
John
Member
OP Offline
John
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
It is reported that Father Taft has told people that he was asked by the Oriental Congregation only to review the text of the Revised Divine Liturgy for heresy, that he was not invited to comment further, and that he did not take it upon himself to exceed what he was directed to do. I do not know what actually happened and I guess one would need to ask him directly. And my information is second hand so consider it at that level.

Those who promoted the Revised Divine Liturgy have certainly indicated that they only followed his directives on reform. But Father Taft says here (and elsewhere) that in his musings on renewal he was doing the equivalent of thinking out loud about possibilities, not issuing a game plan for anyone to actually follow. My personal read of his work is that he believes some reform is necessary but that it should be left to the Holy Spirit over time as an organic development. Perhaps others will disagree with my understanding.

Maybe Father Taft's comments will spark the beginning of an authentic renewal of Liturgy in the Ruthenian Church? If they were intending to follow him then then they certainly should follow him now that he has spoken clearly. I, for one, would certainly support a pastoral embrace of the full and complete official Ruthenian Liturgy. Maybe a corrected version of the 1964 together with the old music that was memorized for 40 years and is still in the hearts and souls of the people. There are many of us who would work tirelessly toward that goal. Too many people have been hurt by the RDL. It is time to care for them.

Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,226
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,226
Thank you for posting this information. I think many people were under the impression that Fr Taft was an integral part of the reformation of the Ruthenian Divine Liturgy. It certainly seems that his comments speak directly to that accusation.

R

Joined: May 2008
Posts: 46
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 46
Can we enlist Father Robert Taft's help in getting back the real Byzantine-Ruthenian Divine Liturgy? If so, how?

I want my church back. The bishops should not be allowed to continue to destroy it.

Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 5,693
B
Member
Offline
Member
B
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 5,693
I am not that crazy about the RDL, but I don't buy the argument about the music the faithful have memorized for 40 years. The Latins now have 40 years of abominable music memorized. It needs to be thrown out, regardless of its age or how many have memorized it. Surely, it is possible for Byzantine musicians to restore music faithfully and authentically without producing something that is awkward and trite.

Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
John
Member
OP Offline
John
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
byzanTN raises some interesting questions.

While I would agree that some of the music used by the Latins is less then good I will disagree that all of it is bad. There is some quite good music used the Latin Church! I would suggest that the problem with some of the music in the Latin Church is not just with improper settings of the text but in many cases with the text itself. Some texts have been ‘dumbed down’ to the point where they are pretty meaningless. If one follows what is happening in the Latin Church one can see that the “Reform of the Reform” is occurring even with the music (texts and music).

I agree with byzanTn that it is possible for cantors to restore music that is faithful and authentic without producing something that is awkward and trite. Unfortunately that is not what occurred with the music promulgated for the RDL. It is very awkward to sing because the settings have the texts serving the chant rather then having the chant serve the texts. This is easily seen in the incorrect accentuation. [Those interested can find a short review with a good example here.]

Some questions for discussion:

1. On what basis does byzanTN declare that the settings for the fixed texts that were sung and memorized for 40 years were so bad that they could not be allowed? I was a cantor for 30+ years. In my experience they were slightly simplified but certainly not abominable. Professor Kavka of Philadelphia (Eternal Memory!) was in general agreement with this and used to say that the “curly q’s” just didn’t work in English. He had offered to the bishops settings which updated the familiar settings with the Revised Texts. Unfortunately his work was rejected by the bishops in favor of different, new and untested style that had the text subservient to the music.

I'd ask that the question be answered in light of the fact that people were hurt by the RDL. We had (and have) old people who broke down and cried because the stability they had in Liturgy all these years was taken from them. Why was this necessary? [Some supporters of the RDL refuse to discuss this point, or they consider these good people as either stupid or disobedient, and some have said these people need to leave.]

2. Given that even the Church in Europe has moved on from the 1906 Bokšaj (as chant is living, and ever developing) what is his snapshot for perfect chant (the model), and – given that the Slavs took Greek Chant and modified it for their use – why is it not possible for Americans to set this chant for good accentuation of the text? In the example I linked we can see the development (and slight simplification) of the Slavonic chant from 1906 to the current day. What was so unacceptable about this development that it needed to be forcibly abandoned and the chant returned to a form that even Europe has abandoned?

It seems to me that the creators of the RDL have things reversed. What we share with others (the Ruthenian Liturgy texts and rubrics) has been abandoned in favor of revisions based upon the ideas that came out of the worst elements of the Vatican II reforms. What we hold as our own (chant) has been treated as unchangeable Gospel to the point of bad accentuation.

The other point that needs to be made is that there is a large difference between the change in music in the Ruthenian Church and the change in the Latin Church after Vatican II. In the Latin Church pretty much everything was thrown out. The new music usually had no relationship to the old (it was not similar). In the Ruthenian Church the new music is notably different but close enough to annoy what has been planted in the hearts and souls of the faithful. Again, think of the Christmas Carol “Away in the Manger”. Think about the two well know melodies for the same song. In the Latin Church the parallel would be abandoning well known version one and replacing it with version 2 (not yet known). In the Ruthenian Church the parallel is to take well know version 1 and change the setting and words. It is far easier to teach a congregation something entirely new then it is to teach them a different version of something they have memorized, especially if they have accepted it and love it.

Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 5,693
B
Member
Offline
Member
B
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 5,693
I wouldn't call music in the Ruthenian church abominable for the last 40 years, but would call much of it in the Latin church exactly that. I am music director/organist in a Latin church, but am fortunate to work for a pastor who won't tolerate the bad stuff. I would call Ruthenian music in the last 40 years over-simplified, sometimes fragmented, and badly performed in many places. Bringing up the point as in previous posts, that the wonderful, uncut, glorious liturgy which is held as the ideal here, was in reality never seen by most of us. My point is that what existed before the RDL could have been improved, and where it deviated from tradition and good musical practice, it could have been fixed. Some in the congregation would have complained about that, but it's the nature of our congregations to complain. They will do that in any case.

Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 5,564
F
Member
Offline
Member
F
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 5,564
A modest suggestion:

The Administrator is largely correct in his posting on chant. I have only one slight modification to propose. In today's world of travel back and forth from Eastern Europe to North America and even Australia, it would be nice to agree on one common setting of the Divine Liturgy and other services - not for obligatory use all the time, but to have available for pilgrimages and similar events. The appropriate language is, of course, Church-Slavonic, since such an occasion is apt to include a significant number of people for whom Church-Slavonic is their "first liturgical language" (a new expression, but I hope the meaning is clear!).

I'm not just being theoretical; I remember the Divine Liturgy in Preshov Cathedral the day before Bishop John Hirka's consecration - the ability of the local Greek-Catholics, the guests from Transcarpathian Ukraine, and the visitors from North America to chant together in Church-Slavonic after so many decades of almost no contact was a powerful and joyful witness.

Fr. Serge

Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
John
Member
OP Offline
John
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
byzanTn seems to be changing his opinion, and I am no longer sure what it is.

Originally Posted by byzanTN
I would call Ruthenian music in the last 40 years over-simplified, sometimes fragmented, and badly performed in many places.

Let me play devil’s advocate.

So what?

So what if some of the settings for the fixed texts of the Divine Liturgy were over-simplified or even fragmented? They were memorized. By what moral authority does one force an entire Church to re-learn music that had served it perfectly well? What absolute reasoning do you have to offer that justifies hurting older people to the point where they sit in the pews and cry over what has happened?

I have stated numerous times that I would not have set them exactly that way had I set them back in the 1960s. But I respect people and what they have learned. I see no justification for the brute force that was used. Even if the new settings for the fixed texts of the Divine Liturgy were superior to the old (and they are, in fact, inferior) there is no justification for hurting people. [I wish people would not talk around this.] It seems to me that the way to enact change is to do so slowly. While the settings for the fixed texts were received and embraced by the Church the settings in the “Black Book” for the changeable texts never were received by the Church (few used them). Changeable settings should have respected the style used in setting the fixed texts.

As to badly performed, that is true in many places. But those numerous parishes that sang that music well evidence that the music was very serviceable, and that a congregation could use the music to “raise the roof”. The answer here is to better train cantors. Making the setting awkward and more complicated does not make them easier for cantors and congregations to sing.

I hope byzanTN (or others) will respond to the specific points I have raised.

Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
John
Member
OP Offline
John
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
Originally Posted by Serge Keleher
I remember the Divine Liturgy in Preshov Cathedral the day before Bishop John Hirka's consecration - the ability of the local Greek-Catholics, the guests from Transcarpathian Ukraine, and the visitors from North America to chant together in Church-Slavonic after so many decades of almost no contact was a powerful and joyful witness.

I have not had the blessing of traveling to Europe and participating in the Slavonic Divine Liturgy. I have had the privilege of singing in this country along with visiting priests and seminarians from Europe who have told me that they way I sing in Slavonic is almost identical to the way they sing. Neither of our 'styles' perfectly matches Bokšaj. I have heard some recordings from Europe (including some on You Tube) and it seems to me that the progression of chant in Europe - while not identical - is very much on the same path as is chant among Ruthenians in America.

Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 5,693
B
Member
Offline
Member
B
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 5,693
Of course, there's no justification for hurting people. However, our church is not a democracy. Rightly or wrongly, someone is in charge and that someone or someones may do things none of us like. A good thing about the RDL is that it set some kind of standard to follow. It actually made our liturgies a bit longer with fewer things left out. Now whether or not one likes that standard is another matter. Given the rate at which the Ruthenian church is declining, our church seems preoccupied with rearranging the Titanic deck chairs. If that mindset doesn't change, there won't be a church in which to sing Ruthenian chant, authentic or otherwise.

Joined: May 2007
Posts: 2,025
ajk Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 2,025
Originally Posted by Administrator

I agree with byzanTn that it is possible for cantors to restore music that is faithful and authentic without producing something that is awkward and trite. Unfortunately that is not what occurred with the music promulgated for the RDL. It is very awkward to sing because the settings have the texts serving the chant rather then having the chant serve the texts. ...

Professor Kavka of Philadelphia (Eternal Memory!) was in general agreement with this and used to say that the “curly q’s” just didn’t work in English. He had offered to the bishops settings which updated the familiar settings with the Revised Texts. Unfortunately his work was rejected by the bishops in favor of different, new and untested style that had the text subservient to the music.

...

2. Given that even the Church in Europe has moved on from the 1906 Bokšaj (as chant is living, and ever developing) what is his snapshot for perfect chant (the model),...

It seems to me that the creators of the RDL have things reversed. What we share with others (the Ruthenian Liturgy texts and rubrics) has been abandoned in favor of revisions based upon the ideas that came out of the worst elements of the Vatican II reforms. What we hold as our own (chant) has been treated as unchangeable Gospel ...

There is a lot to think about here. This is a topic that bridges the kliros and RDL forums. Some thoughts -- rather random, broad and speculative -- that come to mind: they are still in a state of flux.

My criticism of the RDL approach is in accord with the above statement: the irony is that the RDL mandated a rigid adherence to one classical example of chant, and then took considerable and unnecessary liberties and innovations with the liturgicon, for which a single typical edition in Slavonic (the Ruthenian Recension) is acknowledged or at least given lip service. It should have been the other way around.

The inflexibility regarding the chant and the emphasis on Bokšaj stems from a good desire to have some uniformity and preserve one chant tradition. But the uniformity was simply imposed and the preservation of a chant tradition is a worthwhile academic or archival achievement, but our worship points in a different direction. There is the often quoted words of Johann von Gardner:
Quote
In Subcarpathian Rus’ in all the villages ... there was always practiced only congregational singing of the complete services ... The impression proved to be overwhelmingly strong.


Some years ago, well before the RDL and the MCI (site) I made this statement about a parish web page on the chant:
Quote
This page is dedicated to congregational singing of Prostopinije / Plainchant in the broadest sense. That sense honors in a special way the oral and manuscript chant traditions of the Subcarpathian Rus’ while also noting the evolution of that living tradition into a chant form proper to the liturgy celebrated in modern English. As such it admits adaptations of the received chant. It also admits contributions and borrowings and adaptations from other appropriate chant traditions that aid in communal sung prayer.


What's the difference in emphasis between the two quotes and what seems the RDL approach? The difference is the emphasis not on some single, specific form of plainchant, but on "congregational singing," and that of a rich and diversified plainchant heritage. So I would like to see, before offering a single standard for the Metropolia that need not be from a single source -- I would like to see the settings of Kavka, and Vernoski, and Jumba, and Mierzejewski, and the MCI and etc. available for evaluation, discussion and even use. We have the internet, music typesetting programs, pdf files, laser printers, etc. to put settings in acceptable formats, in the hands of cantors and even in the pews before investing (eventually) in costly books.

Change even to the good can be difficult and I have doubts that, for instance, just offering the RDL restored version of the Galician version of the Hymn of the Incarnation would have displaced the previous American-Carpathian-English version that was so familiar. But since that was done by mandate, with the restored Galician version being routinely sung, I wonder what would result if the former version were to be permitted. I've played and sung them both for comparison. They to me are really two entities, and without being critical of the Galician version, the old one still seemed very singable and still had its (nostalgia-free) appeal and charm. It is good chant even though it apparently departed from its pedigree.

The chant serves the text, but the chanting also affects the text by the very fact of its not being spoken but sung. It should never be even close to the point of the text becoming incomprehensible or awkward, but the text can and should be accommodating to the purpose of the chant, communal sung prayer. On a similar note on translation itself, a doctrine is sometimes put forth that the words and expressions in the liturgy must attain to some lowest common denominator of speech so it can be properly understood. The English language (and people using it) accommodates itself to a whole variety of accents in pronunciation and regional variations and specific usages. We expect and accept that. So while there should not be some remote or arcane hierarchical language, it is natural and expected that there should be a mode of expression and vocabulary proper to the liturgy. So we need to fix the translation. The RDL accentuations in the chant are no doubt based on some accepted musical doctrine about which expert and professionals agree, and professional choirs can sing, but from my evaluation as the simple guy in the pew, it ain't the way I'd like to sing it. An example comes to mind regarding actual use over theoretical form. For Great Friday procession we alternate the English and Slavonic of The Noble Joseph. We use the Levkulic versions and it seems we are singing the same thing. An English version was given in the special booklet prepared the year Great Friday fell on March 25. Sure, it was Tone 2, but there was no way to me that it matched the Slavonic. Had we tried to use it for the procession with the alternating Slavonic it would have been like switching between two different melodies/cadences.






Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
John
Member
OP Offline
John
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
Originally Posted by byzanTN
Of course, there's no justification for hurting people. However, our church is not a democracy.

It seems that the bishops ignored this when they rejected the directives of Rome, namely the Instruction for Applying the Liturgical Prescriptions of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches and Liturgiam Authentiam. To this day no explanation has been given for the outright rejection of these directives.

Originally Posted by byzanTN
A good thing about the RDL is that it set some kind of standard to follow. It actually made our liturgies a bit longer with fewer things left out.

I am really sick of hearing this because it is false. We already had a standard – the official Ruthenian recension liturgical books promulgated by Rome. In English we had the 1964/1965 translation. Not perfect and in need of some correction but overall quite good. And the music for the fixed texts of the Divine Liturgy was well received.

In many parishes the RDL Liturgcion reduces what was taken at the Divine Liturgy. Anyone who compares it to the 1942 Slavonic or 1964 English can see this quite easily. The elements that were added back in some parishes by force of mandate could just as easily had been added back through education, example and encouragement. The RDL does not add back anything that was not already in the 1964 liturgicon.

Originally Posted by byzanTN
Given the rate at which the Ruthenian church is declining, our church seems preoccupied with rearranging the Titanic deck chairs. If that mindset doesn't change, there won't be a church in which to sing Ruthenian chant, authentic or otherwise.

Parishes that took the full Divine Liturgy were actually growing. And in most places these congregations sung well. We’ve discussed this before. The RDL is the latest symptom of a Church with problems. We run from our traditions instead of embracing them. If you don’t like who you are people pick up on it, and they are not attracted to you.

Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
John
Member
OP Offline
John
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 6,555
Likes: 2
Originally Posted by ajk
What's the difference in emphasis between the two quotes and what seems the RDL approach? The difference is the emphasis not on some single, specific form of plainchant, but on "congregational singing," and that of a rich and diversified plainchant heritage. So I would like to see, before offering a single standard for the Metropolia that need not be from a single source -- I would like to see the settings of Kavka, and Vernoski, and Jumba, and Mierzejewski, and the MCI and etc. available for evaluation, discussion and even use. We have the internet, music typesetting programs, pdf files, laser printers, etc. to put settings in acceptable formats, in the hands of cantors and even in the pews before investing (eventually) in costly books.

This has also been generally what I have advocated. Each presents his gifts and the Lord blesses what He wills. I was told by one member of the liturgical commission that it did not matter whether the new chant was good or bad. That the Church could learn to sing bad chant just as easily as it could sing good chant. The only thing that mattered here was that the new chant was official. With the fixed settings we already had a good degree of uniformity (since they provided for 90% of what is sung at the Divine Liturgy). We saw much work on the changeable settings by many cantors. Liberty would have served here better then rigid uniformity. And besides, this type of rigid uniformity of every music note is hardly Byzantine. It is more a product of a Latin mindset.

Originally Posted by ajk
Change even to the good can be difficult and I have doubts that, for instance, just offering the RDL restored version of the Galician version of the Hymn of the Incarnation would have displaced the previous American-Carpathian-English version that was so familiar. But since that was done by mandate, with the restored Galician version being routinely sung, I wonder what would result if the former version were to be permitted. I've played and sung them both for comparison. They to me are really two entities, and without being critical of the Galician version, the old one still seemed very singable and still had its (nostalgia-free) appeal and charm. It is good chant even though it apparently departed from it pedigree.

Again I am in agreement. The RDL version would not have been adopted on merit. Actually, very little of the RDL music would have been adopted willingly. I know of several parishes that just can’t manage the new setting and have gone back to the old. This will continue, I think, since we see “text only” pew books replacing what has been called the “Teal Terror”.

Originally Posted by ajk
The chant serves the text, but the chanting also affects the text by the very fact of its not being spoken but sung. It should never be even close to the point of the text becoming incomprehensible or awkward, but the text can and should be accommodating to the purpose of the chant, communal sung prayer.

An acquaintance of mine who works at Antiochian Village related to me that he has been present and sitting in his office during many clergy conferences for both the Byzantine Catholic Pittsburgh clergy and the Orthodox Johnstown clergy. He said that when the Pittsburgh clergy sang he could listen and understand almost every word they were singing. But when the Johnstown clergy sang he could not understand many of the words. Both groups sang loudly and decently. It was the settings. The 1965 Pittsburgh settings had fewer repeats of phrases and better accentuation then the chant sung by the Johnstown clergy, even if the melodies slightly simplified. So here we have a non-Slav indicating clearly that the settings make a huge difference in what can be understood. I will also relate that a fellow cantor had played the official music recorded by a Roman Catholic group to train Ruthenian cantors for his parents. They had no idea what it was. The music was unfamiliar and they could not understand the words. When he placed the green pew book in front of them they could not make the connection. They thought it was Gregorian Chant.

Originally Posted by ajk
The English language (and people using it) accommodates itself to a whole variety of accents in pronunciation and regional variations and specific usages. We expect and accept that. So while there should not be some remote or arcane hierarchical language, it is natural and expected that there should be a mode of expression and vocabulary proper to the liturgy. So we need to fix the translation.

Quite right. The difference between sacred and profane language. Profane means “outside the temple”. We could quote Liturgiam Authenticam here about literal accuracy at length.

Originally Posted by ajk
The RDL accentuations in the chant are no doubt based on some accepted musical doctrine about which expert and professionals agree, and professional choirs can sing, but from my evaluation as the simple guy in the pew, it ain't the way I'd like to sing it.

I’ve not seen anyone claim that the RDL settings are based upon some accepted musical doctrine about which experts and professionals agree. It seems to me that in this case the adage “save us from the professionals” is applicable! All that needed to be done was the simple and normal method of setting chant. Prostopinije has always been more of a sing along than anything else. We have the original Folk Mass! But, yes, the “it ain’t the way I’d like to sing it” is the most common complaint about the revised settings.

Originally Posted by ajk
An example comes to mind regarding actual use over theoretical form. For Great Friday procession we alternate the English and Slavonic of The Noble Joseph. We use the Levkulic versions and it seems we are singing the same thing. An English version was given in the special booklet prepared the year Great Friday fell on March 25. Sure, it was Tone 2, but there was no way to me that it matched the Slavonic. Had we tried to use it for the procession with the alternating Slavonic it would have been like switching between two different melodies/cadences.

A very accurate observance. That music book was a disaster everywhere it was used. The problem was a combination of awkward settings with much changed texts. Whoever created it was clearly not an experienced cantor. In the parish I chanted in that year we used “paste-ins” to the Levkulic Good Friday Vespers book. The people had no issues with the additions and raised the roof with their singing.

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3

Moderated by  Father Anthony 

Link Copied to Clipboard
The Byzantine Forum provides message boards for discussions focusing on Eastern Christianity (though discussions of other topics are welcome). The views expressed herein are those of the participants and may or may not reflect the teachings of the Byzantine Catholic or any other Church. The Byzantine Forum and the www.byzcath.org site exist to help build up the Church but are unofficial, have no connection with any Church entity, and should not be looked to as a source for official information for any Church. All posts become property of byzcath.org. Contents copyright - 1996-2020 (Forum 1998-2020). All rights reserved.
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5