Monday, July 9, 2012

Gregorian Chant

Next to Our Lord Himself, Gregorian Chant is perhaps the most treasured thing about the Tridentine Rite.  I used to believe that I could never learn Chant.  After all, I did not really know how to read music... and "those monks... don't they have to study for decades to become proficient"?

But the fact is that if you love the Extraordinary From of the Roman rite (aka the Latin Mas or Tridentine Rite) then you owe it to yourself to learn to love Chant and perhaps even to sing it even if only from the pews!

The Mass has two major components:  The Ordinaries and the Propers (click here for a definition).

THE FACT IS THAT I COULD AND DID LEARN CHANT!  All you need are 4 things to do this:

  1. The desire to sing the same psalms and hymns that Our Blessed Lord sang (albeit with slightly different melodies and Latin instead of Hebrew)
  2. Access to a high speed Internet connection.
  3. A willingness to practice a little each day.
  4. A reasonably good ear.
It will help if you have someone else who knows a little more than you do... but that is not absolutely necessary for starters.  I was taught a young man who described himself as a "Recovering Choir Director".  He had been "converted" to loving Gregorian Chant after reading the Church's various documents on the liturgy and on Sacred Music.

I will write more about this in my next post on Chant.