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Archbishop Sample's Letter on Liturgical Music

Church singing, Tacuinum Sanitatis Casanatensis (14th century).For the next while, I am planning articles on liturgical music.

At the end of June, I will be attending the Sacred Music Colloquium, this year being held in Indianapolis, Indiana.

This post is being prepared ahead to prepare some ground. When I return, I will regale readers with items from the colloquium.

Liturgical music can be contentious.  Compared to other church-related discussions, music had not garnered much ink over the years.  Considering how high a percentage of church-going time is music-related, this might be a bit surprising.  It can certainly lead to more than a little creativity on the part of those involved in liturgical preparation.

The liturgical documents which discuss liturgical music are often ignored.  I have known many, myself included, who were years participating or even leading choirs for Mass who had never read any documents pertaining to liturgy or liturgical music.  That is a shame.

After getting started on this article in advance of my trip, I was sent this link to a letter by Archbishop Sample of Portland, Oregon.  He wrote the letter while still the Bishop of Marquette. While Abp Sample is not in Canada, there is very little in his letter that could not apply to the dioceses of Canada.  The letter is a compendium of liturgical documents pertaining to music, both pre and post Second Vatican Council.

I share this with our readers and encourage you to read to the end.  It is enlightening, to be sure.