Sunday, January 01, 2006

What I Miss About Anglicanism

I mostly miss the beautiful hymns! Anglicanism has some of the best hymns ever written and not being able to sing them every Sunday at mass is a bit hard. I've found that most of the hymns in the Catholic Church leave something to be desired. Although I do have to admit that my wife and I have found a church here in Pittsburgh, St. Bernard's, that uses hymns from the hymnal which are pretty good (probably because a lot of them are written by Anglicans). We have been to some other Catholic churches here that use a supplemental hymn book where all the hymns (I use that word very loosely here) have been written sometime in the late 70's and they are absolutely the poorest example of music I have ever heard! Why doesn't the Catholic Church have any good composers? One would think that a Church with such extensive history would have the most beautiful music to worship God with. I'm sure there are in fact great Catholic composers, they just need to come out from under the rocks they are hiding and permeate the liturgy of the Catholic Church with wonderful hymns. Until that happens, I am afraid to say that the Anglicans have got the Catholics beat!




O Cecilia, patron saint of composers, here my cry and pray for us that God's Holy Catholic Church may be filled with composers who are inspired to create glorious music worthy of being sung to our Most Worthy and Heavenly Creator, the Lord God Almighty! In Jesus' name I pray. Amen!

3 comments:

4HisChurch said...

I am a cradle Catholic and was "High Episcopalian", i.e. Anglican for 10 years with my musician husband. We reverted/converted to Catholicism and we REALLY miss the Anglican hymns...*sigh*

Joseph said...

Yes the hymns are bad. Like architecture, this is the Catholic expression. It seems it is the best we can do. From my experience, the songs serious folks make fun of, myself included, are really liked by the persons in the pews. And I mean specifically On Eagles Wings and Hosea. As an organist, the funeral requests always go in that direction, usually including Amazing Grace also. O well…

You have a nice picture there of St. Cecilia. Since I was a boy looking at the stained glass windows I have noticed an unbroken trend: Cecilia is always portrayed as absolutely beautiful. 100% of the time. I have no idea how all the various artists came to agreement on this.

4HisChurch said...

Well, if you take the entire history of Catholicism it is, thank God, *not* the best we can do, just the best we seem to be doing at the current time.

It saddens me to see funerals for dignified 80-somethings with such banal songs as the Hagan/Haas variety chosen by their boomer kids who have not been inside a Catholic Church in 30 years.