Two Reviews of New Hymnals

PrayTell offers two reviews of two hymnals:

Adoremus Hymnal

The first edition of The Adoremus Hymnal (AH) was produced in 1997 by Adoremus – Society for the Renewal of the Sacred Liturgy to promote the “authentic reform” of the liturgy of the Roman Rite. It solicits donations to support its work, and interested persons may become members for an annual $40 fee (Outside the U.S.: $45). The society boldly asserts that “the liturgical reform mandated by the Second Vatican Council cannot be accomplished by a return to the pre-conciliar Liturgy.” The Introduction refers to the encouraging “recovery of the sacred dimension of Catholic worship,” and declares that “the restoration of sacredness and beauty to the Church’s liturgy can be seen in art and architecture in churches, in revived devotional practices such as Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, and in a surprising recovery of sacredness in liturgical music evidenced in a revival of chant and choral hymns in the liturgy.” Note the combination of Versions I and II. Helen Hull Hitchcock was the general editor of the second edition under review here and she served on the executive committee with the Revs. Joseph Fessio, SJ and Jerry Pokorsky. The hymnal was published by Ignatius Press… READ MORE

And St. Michael Hymnal

The next hymnal under review, The St. Michael Hymnal (SMH), edited by Linda Powell Schafer and Fr. Michael O’Connor, OP, was produced by St. Boniface Parish in Lafayette, Indiana (founded in 1853), because “a disparity became apparent between the doctrinal and moral truths that were faithfully preached and handed on in the context of the liturgy and the sometimes poor or ambiguous ‘incarnations’ of this saving truth in the music and musical texts used in the liturgical celebrations.” Ms. Schafer is a member of St. Boniface Church, having served as its director of music, and Fr. Michael O’Connor, an organist, singer and composer, lives in Washington, DC at the Dominican House of Studies. The hymnal was named after St. Michael because the parish unofficially adopted the archangel as their patron and protector…. READ MORE