Beginning in Lent and throughout the year the Liturgical Advisory Committee (LAC) will be including new hymns and service music. At times, the hymn will be familiar, but with a new tune. At other times we may experience and new hymn and tune altogether. The same goes for our service music. We all know and have been brought up with the dynastic tunes of Merbecke for our Gloria, Creed, Eucharistic Prayer and other sung elements of our liturgy. Indeed many of these tunes are in our bones and form part of our DNA. However I am really excited about some of the music and hymnody being introduced by LAC.
Santo Santo Santo - This week we are introducing a new Sanctus, aka Holy, Holy, Holy during the Eucharistic Prayer. This particular Sanctus is sung in both English and Spanish. So why would we want to sing in different language? Well, part of the reason is to remind ourselves, in the context of our worship, that we live in a world with many languages, multiple cultures, creeds and ethnicities. All cultures and people give praise to the Creator and Redeemer in deep and diverse ways.
Immersing ourselves in a different language opens us up to engage and relate to a different culture and language in a new way. Our understanding and theology broadens as the language resonates with us and we find broader meaning for our own experiences.
By allowing ourselves to be open to different experiences and languages from our own we are reminded and begin to understand the depths of suffering and yearning other people have endured for the sake of the Gospel. We follow a God and stand alongside others who have been persecuted for their faith. An attack on one faith group, religion or House of Prayer is an attack on all religions, people of faith and Houses of Prayer. This too needs to become part of our conscience in worship, as we are all in this together.
Over the course of this year there will be hymns and music that will be new to all of us. Some of them we will love, others we won’t. I ask that you allow yourself to experience the new music with an open heart and mind. We all have the best interest of St. Martin’s in mind and want to see our parish grow. So please do let me know how the new music is resonating for you. Your opinion and thoughts are valuable to me.
Fr. Robin Ruder-Celiz