The new Graduale Parvum, which was launched at St Mary’s Seminary, Oscott, Birmingham in April, is being introduced to the Diocese of East Anglia at the Cathedral of St John the Baptist, Norwich, on Saturday September 29, with a day of chant and liturgy.

The day, Sing With The Angels, begins at 10.30am until 5.30pm, organised by Paul Henriksen under the auspices of the Association for Latin Liturgy, together with Cathedral Music Director, Daniel Justin.

Although Bishop Alan Hopes, is not able to attend because of previous commitments elsewhere, he has sent his good wishes and encouragement, saying: “This marks an important moment in the Liturgy of the Church, in which both the antiphons and Gregorian chant have been made easily accessible for the local parish community.”

Paul said: “There has long been a need for a publication which fulfils the need, expressed so clearly in the General Instruction to the Roman Missal, that it is not hymns or ‘worship songs’ that we should be always singing during Mass, but the real texts of the liturgy, to music that is ‘proper’ to the Roman Liturgy – that is to say, Gregorian chant.

“This new Graduale Parvum provides for the first time the opportunity for small choirs and congregations without any previous experience of singing the chant, to have a full part in the authentic music of the Church. It provides priests, organists, choirs and congregations with a full resource to the Introits of the Sundays – and to those feast days which sometimes occur on a Sunday. This first volume will be followed by the Communions, and then by the Graduals, Alleluias and Offertories.

“What is unique about the Graduale Parvum is that it sets both Latin and the official English translation to the same Gregorian chants, using the original Graduale Romanum as its source, with the modes and ‘feel’ of the original. Where previously an opening hymn has been sung, it can now be replaced by the proper Introit for that Sunday. There are psalm verses provided to last as long as is necessary for the procession and incensing of the altar, after which the chant concludes. This will avoid those situations where everyone has to wait for the start of the Mass, while the many verses of (an often inappropriate) hymn are completed,” said Paul.

“But what will really enhance the celebration will be the prayerfulness and timeless beauty of the chants themselves, in which everyone can share, uniting them with countless generations of Catholics who have sung these same melodies through the ages.”

As for the use of Latin itself, in the Foreword to the book Bishop Alan writes: “Sometimes it is not possible – for various reasons – to re-introduce Latin in the parish where it has not been heard perhaps for decades, but with the Graduale Parvum, choirs and congregations will be equally at home singing the same melodies in English either for a whole Mass, or with some chants in Latin and others in English, or as a support for fully Latin celebrations. I warmly commend Graduale Parvum for the use of all Catholic Churches in this country.”

The main speaker and tutor for the day will be Fr Guy Nicholls from Birmingham Oratory. The Celebrant of our Mass will be Canon Peter Rollings assisted by Mgr Canon Eugene Harkness from Our Lady and the English Martyrs, Cambridge

Representatives will be welcomed from every Parish in the Diocese and they should book their place to secure music and refreshments. Be sure to book your place by Monday September 24, booking in using the link

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