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#249106 08/14/07 03:08 AM
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While it is pretty obvious that contemporary music is a no-no in the BDL (it has its place outside the liturgy though), does the BDL allow for the use of the organ/piano? Or is it a capella all the way?

By the way, are hymns like "How Great Thou Art" sung in the BDL or allowed to be sung in the BDL? Like will there be a time allocated in between the liturgy to sing a hymn?

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>does the BDL allow for the use of the organ/piano?
No.

>Or is it a capella all the way?
Yes. Unless you count the little pitch tuner some choirs use to find the right key.

>By the way, are hymns like "How Great Thou Art" sung in the BDL or allowed to be sung in the BDL?
No and no.

>Like will there be a time allocated in between the liturgy to sing a hymn?
Yes. The Communion hymn has a small amount of choice (How Great Thou Art not being one of them) and the Byzantine Church also frequently has a gathering and dismissal hymn, which is not part of the Byzantine Tradition, but a lot of parishes still do it. How Great Thou Art wouldn't be an option there, either.

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I'm a guest here and at the Divine Liturgy, so I know not of what I speak. That said, I was wondering about this very question.

I went to a Ukrainian Rite DL and heard my least favorite icky hymns remembered from R.C. churches in past years. I was horrified to hear these hymns had jumped Rites. The Liturgy was truly beautiful and prayerful, otherwise.

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Dear Perpetua,

That experience is not merely horrifying; it is outrageous. The Ukrainian Church has an enormous repertoire of traditional liturgical music; singing RC hymns (or Protestant hymns) which have long since passed their sell-by date is inexcusable.

One thought occurs to me - it is just possible that the particular Liturgy you attended is largely for the benefit of people who are coming from misplaced nostalgia for the pre-Vatican II Latin Mass, and these deplorable hymns are intended to make them feel at home. That doesn't excuse such a thing - rather, it suggests the urgency of teaching the people to sing good, authentic, traditional Byzantine-Slav liturgical music, of which there is no shortage.

Fr. Serge

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Perpetua-

I'm no expert, but my belief is that properly extraliturgical hymns should be done after Liturgy (while the people are getting the Holy Bread) or perhaps in the space between Orthros and Liturgy. A very limited variety may be suitable for Communion time ("Oh Son of God Accept me Today...", "Behold This has Touched Thy Lips" and Pslam 33 should exhaust the available time quite easily).

Having an extensive period of time for nonliturgical hymns is to my mind incorrect in the Byzantine liturgy. And I agree with Father Serge - to use "On Eagles Wings", "Shine Jesus Shine" & al. (or for that matter "Amazing Grace" or "How Great Thou Art") is horrible taste, especially when there is a wide variety of better things that could be sung in both English and in the original language.

Markos

Last edited by MarkosC; 08/18/07 03:38 AM.
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It is my simple contention that these nonliturgical songs belong outside the liturgy. Simple as that.

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Agreed with all of the above--those songs have their place. It's just not in any Byzantine Divine Liturgy. We sing acapella (someplaces better than in others), and have a very wide range of songs that have been sung by our ancesors for literally centuries. Some of the songs mentioned earlier are babes in diapers compared to some of our liturgical traditions. St. John Chrystostom codified the Liturgy in the year 406. When was "Amazing Grace" written?

I'm not putting it down. None of us are. Nor are we trying to be superior. I hope we are not coming across that way. It's just not our tradition. If a church is doing it, there's a reason--Father Serge is probably correct--to try to make cross over converts feel better or more at home. But it's simply not our tradition. You don't expect to hear a Beatle's song in the middle of a Puccini opera, or a Gilbert and Sullivan performance. They just don't fit together.

Tim

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We are called.
Called to be tasteless,
Called to be annoying,
Called to sing garbage forever.
We are called.

Sorry, I couldn't resist. The devil made me do it. biggrin

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Well, a little thought might help. When someone goes somewhere different, the last thing he would expect to see is something he or she is familiar with. I remember someone saying "why eat American food in Singapore?" Therefore, if a person wants to become a Catholic, would you think he would want that musical tradition found in his former denomination to prevail? I bet not.

Interesting side-note(s): Classical music did fuse itself with rock music when Metallica joined forces with the late Michael Kamen to record S&M. The result? : grin :Hear it for yourself.

A

Last edited by Collin Nunis; 09/24/07 01:07 AM.

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