Sunday, January 15, 2017

The rest of the week - Epiphany and fleeing Snowmageddon

Thursday was another day full of music.  We had 4 1/2 hours of chant and polyphony rehearsal, plus chanting of Morning and Night Prayer, plus Mass - probably about 7 hours of singing, total.

The day's Mass was for St. John Neumann, OF ad orientem, completely sung, not only the ordinary (Mass IV) and the chanted propers of the day, but also the readings.

In the Traditional Latin Mass, Epiphany is celebrated on the appointed day, not transferred, so we actually got to have Epiphany on Jan. 6th. :) 
Due to the impending Winter Storm Helene, the  High Mass was moved up by three hours.  This meant we had to skip our last rehearsal, and the earlier one was shortened.  The rector of the cathedral surprised us by sending over two King cakes for the coffee hour after Morning Prayer! 

The Mass setting for the day was the Missa O Quam Gloriosum Est Regnum by Vittoria, which uses the same motifs from the motet after which this blog is named.  Hopefully, we will learn this setting in our parish schola at home later on.

Music files!   (It's a wonder I figured out how to do this)

 St. Paul Cathedral

Men's schola

Women's schola

Our fearless conductors!

Morning sky from hotel window
prior to Snowmageddon

So, I've been collecting pics of the 'angels in the architecture' in the various churches .  There weren't any in this cathedral, but they do have these adoring angels before the tabernacle!

Birmingham was getting ready for an afternoon of heavy sleet, so it was a blessing to be able to finish early, but it's always hard to leave.  We made it home safely, although it rained most of the way.  My schola and traveling buddy Jean is a great driver, even if I was white-knuckling it for a good part of the time! :-)

The annual summer Colloquium will take place in Minnesota this June.  Hope to see y'all there!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Mass with Bishop +Baker

Since we were not in town to attend the installation of  our new bishop, it was lovely to have this evening's Mass celebrated by Bishop +Baker.  His Excellency was supposed to attend the installation, but he said our conference was more important.  May God bless him for his sacrifice!

This was following a full day of rehearsals for our own Masses on Thursday and Friday, of course.  More pieces have been added to our repertoire, with one chant rehearsal and two polyphony rehearsals.  Lots'o singing today!

Chanting Morning Prayer

Sister Servants of the Eternal Word
Bishop +Baker at his Cathedra

Bishop +Baker with priests, seminarians, and
servers attending the sacred music workshop

Highlands Consort of Birmingham
presented an Early Music Concert
after Mass
Works by William Byrd 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Winter Sacred Music - Birmingham!

No, it isn't yet Colloquium time!  This is a special edition - the Winter Sacred Music workshop, this year held in chilly Birmingham, AL.  There is even a chance of snow before we finish on Friday.  Woot!

45 attendees have braved various weather events traveling.   It's great so see old friends again and to meet new ones.

 We just had a very long drive with rain and fog thrown in for good measure.

The Mass on Wednesday will be with Bishop Baker in his cathedral.  As our schola director at home  would say, we will be 'massed at' by the cathedral choir.  In the meantime, we are practicing for the Thursday and Friday Masses, in the OF and EF forms respectively.  We are still in the Christmas season liturgically , so the Friday EF Mass will be Epiphany proper.  The setting of the Ordinary that we are learning is the Missa O Quam Gloriosum et Regnum by Victoria, which features the same motives as the motet of the same name.  We are also learning his motet Magi Viderunt Stellam.  Our advanced chant group is also responsible for the OF Introit, Gradual, Alleluia, and Offertory Propers on Thursday, as well as the Alma Redemptoris Mater by Palestrina.  The entire ensemble is learning Mass IV, Cunctipotens Genitor Deus, for that Mass, too.  There might be a few others, but we haven't learned them yet.  That's a whole lot of music we have, and have learned most of it in under two days so far.  (Well, two of the motets aren't new, so that helps.)

Looking forward to more rehearsals and chanted morning and night prayer each day!  This is the Best kind of vacation!  :-)  I highly recommend it.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Colloquium, Last Day - Mozart!

The 2016 Colloquium drew to an end today, but not without one more spectacular Mass.  Today we were again at St. Joseph Shrine for a Solemn High Mass, with the Mozart choir singing his Sparrow Mass setting, complete with 10-piece orchestra.  Today was the feast of St. William of Naples, an 1th century saint, who is an inspiring saint for our musical work, as he was forced to leave his monastery and subsequently went on to found several more.  In his homily, Father remarked that St. William was probably pleasantly surprised that he had a solemn Mass for his feast day, since he probably had not had something that elaborate in quite a few centuries!  :)

The choir got to sing from the loft, always a treat since lofts are generally so few and far between.

Following lunch and a quick visit to st. Charles Borromeo parish and the Lewis and Clark Museum in St. Charles, MO, it was time to return home to implement what we have learned, until next year.... in Minnesota!

Mozart choir in the shrine loft

Solemn High Mass, feast of St. William

St. Charles Borromeo

Rose window, St. Charles Borromeo

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Colloquium Day Five - Palestrina!!

Could this week get any better?  Why, yes, yes it can!

Today we had a plenary talk by Bishop +Conley from the Diocese of Lincoln, Nebraska, who spoke on the Via Pulchritudinis, or the Way of Beauty.  We, as transmitters of the sacred music tradition, are called to evangelize through our chant amd polyphony.  In our post-modern culture, truth and goodness are no longer valued, but beauty retains its power to inspire conversion, turning to God.  We are to let it transform our whole lives, leading by example.

A lovely addition to the week jas been the opportunity to meet two of my online Plurk friends in person.  We met Mark, from Rome of the West, and Tina, from Snup's View from the Back Pew, for lunch at Schlafly's Tap Room neat the Colloquium hotel.  I love it when my online friends turn into 'in real life' friends! :-)

After lunch was the final rehearsal for the evening Mass for the Nativity of St. John the Baptist at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis.  We were warned not to let our necks get stuck looking up so much at all the mosaics adorning the interior of the cathedral!  It would have been easy to do so, as it is covered from top to bottom, and then some!  Our 60 voice Palestrina choir had the awesome experience of singing the Missa Papae Marcelli in this magnificent space.  The reverberation time seemed to be almost nine seconds!  Following the Mass and supper, we returned t  the cathedral for an organ concert, which again filled the space.  I'm still trying to figure out how to pack some of that echo for home; even three seconds would make a world of difference in our home parish.

Tomorrow, the Mozart choir will provide his Sparrow Mass setting for our final Mass back at the Shrine of St. Joseph.

Bp. +Conley gives a plenary talk
 on the Via Pulchritudinis
Main altar
 containing a relic of St. Louis

Me with Mark and Tina,
in real life!

St. Louis is the patron
 of the Secular Franciscan Order

Lots and lots of angels!

Up in the baldachino
you can see the honeycomb.
The Motet choir sang Jesu Dulcis Memoria by Victoria

Friday, June 24, 2016

Colloquium Day Four - Requiem

Today we had the annual  Solemn Requiem Mass for the deceased members of CMAA.  We were back at the Shrine for the Mass, followed by Solemn Vespers and sung Compline.

Earlier in the day,  the Palestrina choir (the one I'm in) rehearsed the Missa Papae Marcelli, which we will sing at the Cathedral Basilica tomorrow.  If you have never been in the midst of 60 voices singing this Mass, I highly recommend that you do so.  It is breathtakingly beautiful.  

After all the liturgical events at the Shrine, I got to meet my Plurk friend Tina and her puppy pal Dug in person!  Dug showed off his cat-stalking and treat-eating skills, and Tina graciously played tour guide and gave me a driving tour of the city before dropping me back at the hotel.  Tomorrow, I get to meet another Plurk buddy, Mark from Rome of the West blog fame, in real life.  :-)

The Mass will be live-streamed on Friday at 5:30 Central, 6:30 Eastern here:


Solemn Requiem Mass

Fr. Pasley




Thursday, June 23, 2016

Colloquium Day Three

Today we visited the Shrine of St. Joseph and had our first of three Masses there.  This historic shrine has a miraculous history, and the altar was donated by those who had prayed to St. Joseph and were preserved from the cholera epidemic of 1849.  The shrine is also the site of a miraculous healing of a man who asked the intercession of then Blessed Peter Claver, which miracle was ine of the two miracles approved by Rome, leading to his canonization.  We were able to stand in the same spot and venerate the very same relic!

Original baptismal font from  the mid 1800s

Side altar

St. John Berchmanns, patron saint of altar boys

More angels in the architecture

St. Joseph stands vigil by the rectory parking