Coming to Your Parish Soon…
There’s a lot of debate about the music in Catholic parishes, including the words of hymns. New to the Catholic hymnal market is a series called Have It Your Way Hymnals, whose motto is “Because YOU are church.”
One of the two new hymnals in the series is A Treasury of Relativist Hymns, advertised as “guaranteed not to offend anyone, except maybe the most stubbornly orthodox Catholics in your parish.” Sample hymn titles are “Now Thank We All Our Gods,” “Faith of Our Parents,” “Joyful, Joyful, I Adore Me,” “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlepersons,” and “Sing a New Song Unto Whatever.”
Not your cup of tea? Well, consider the other new hymnal in the series, A Treasury of Materialist Hymns, billed as helping people “recover from guilt trips inflicted on the materially minded.” Sample titles: “A Mighty Fortress Is Our Pension,” “All Things Bright and Beautiful and Expensive,” and “Crown Him With Many Stock Options.”
Not your thing? Well, coming soon in the series is A Treasury of Environmentalist Hymns.
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The post-Vatican II Church hastened to rid our parishes of sentiment-filled art, texts, and music.…
Parishes should be taught, preferably by example, that music is not by nature a democratic art and that musical values — like doctrines — are not subject to vote.
The question of musical excellence lingers. A primary objection to it is that it’s elitist or exclusive.