Paragraph 16 of Musicam Sacrum (Instruction on Music in the Liturgy) from the Second Vatican Council states:

"One cannot find anything more religious and more joyful in sacred celebrations than a whole congregation expressing its faith and devotion in song. Therefore the active participation of the whole people, which is shown in singing, is to be carefully promoted..."

Paragraph 16 appears to be rather definitive; a person is actually worshipping at his best when singing. Active participation is clearly shown by singing.

Sacred Music in the Liturgy deeply involves the congregation in worshipping God. It draws the congregation rather than excluding them. Singing is so wonderful that "to sing" says St. Augustine "is to have prayed twice".

Paragraph 27 states,

"For the celebration of the Eucharist with the people, especially on Sundays and feast days, a form of sung Mass (Missa in cantu) is to be preferred as much as possible, even several times on the same day."

Certainly, the older generation of Catholics can remember the High Sung Masses of old that would take place at least once every Sunday. As I am a young Catholic, I never had the opportunity to attend a High Sung Mass. However, there have been occasions where I've heard priests like Rev. Father Aloysius Ong, Rev. Father Michael Teo and Rev. Father John Joseph Fenelon sing the Mass. These were rare and random occasions.

In my opinion, sung Masses lift up the people to a greater level of worship of God and adds an extra and unique element to the Holy Sacrifice. Paragraph 28 shows the effort taken by the Council Fathers to make the "Mass more beautiful by singing".

Since Sacred Music is for "the glory of God and the sanctification of the faithful" (Paragraph 4, Musicam Sacrum), is it possible for parishes to include a sung Mass for Sundays and other Solemnities; listing down on the bulletin the time for such a Mass?

Paul D. Molina


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