Music and Liturgy Journal

Volume 42 Issue 2




Society News
Preparing the Liturgy: 1st Sunday in Advent (A) to Palm Sunday (A)

The next issue of Music and Liturgy sees in a new liturgical year, Year A and we welcome St Matthew’s account of five great sermons. Advent, Christmas Time, Ordinary Time Winter and Lent.

My Song is of Mercy and Justice – SSG Summer School 2016

Mo Griffiths

Belsey Bridge Conference Centre, Ditchingham once again saw the 80th Society of Saint Gregory Summer School! 18 Dioceses was represented including Los Angeles! The theme was My Song is of Mercy and Justice which invited delegates to reflect and consider where we experience and witness mercy in our own busy lives at home, parishes, communities, and in our liturgies.

Full article in Music & Liturgy Issue 368.

The Penitential Psalms

Sr Petra Simpson OSB, Stanbrook Abbey, Wass, Yorkshire

There are 7 Penitential Psalms and this Jubilee Year of Mercy is the perfect time to reflect on these. Pope Francis reminds us in Misereicordiae Vultus that mercy is the ‘ultimate and supreme act by which God comes to meet us’. Our salvation depends on it.

Petra Simpson describes how the psalter is recited weekly, and how this encourages those who do, to hear God’s Word and return to Him from sin, to receive His healing grace so that their heart rejoices ones more in spiritual joy. Pray the psalms for strength and perseverance, in the hope that the mercy of God brings comfort to those suffering.

Miserere: Two Settings of Psalm 50

Alan Smith

Following on from Sr Petra Simpson’s reflection on the Penitential Psalms, Alan Smith concentrates on two particular settings of Psalm 50; one by Gregorio Allegri (b.1582 d.1652) and the other by James MacMillan (b. 1959).

Deepening Encounters: Mercy as the Heart of Eucharistic Spirituality

Aidan Rossiter

The Year of Mercy is coming to a close soon but have we all truly reflected on mercy at the heart of the Eucharist? Aidan Rossiter asks us to consider some points including whether we have understood the mercy of the Mass and whether we appreciate our human potential to become God’s friends in peace.

Rainbows – A sign of the merciful, gentle compassion of God

Frank McDermott

Rainbows Bereavement Support GB is a well-respected national charity that has a proven positive impact on young children and adults going through significant loss in their lives. Frank McDermott is the current Chair of Trustees of Rainbows and proudly presents to us its charitable aims and ministry since 1983. Take a look at their website for more information if you or someone you know has been affected by an aspect of bereavement or loss.

The Joy of Love – Synods on the Family Amoris Laetitia (The Joy of Love), and the way of pastoral accompaniment of families

Caroline Dollard

Represented by Cardinal Vincent Nichols (Westminster) and Bishop Peter Doyle (Northampton), England and Wales’ experience was taken to Rome to help discern the global question of ‘what is the family?’, ‘what is the family called to be?’. Pope Francis’ exhortation from this asks the whole church to consider in diocesan and parish life, what would enrich our accompaniment of families. More importantly, what enriches the life of the Church by our families.

Sound Reflections: Music in the revised sacramental rites

Paul Inwood

Paul Inwood continues his discussion on the changes in the new Order of Celebrating Matrimony that affect pastoral musicians.

Letter from America: Year of Mercy

Philip Jakob

How different is American liturgical life to British liturgical life? Philip Jacob has been in Tampa, Florida for some time now and continues to give us an insight into how the two nations really differ (or not!) from parking space to participation.

So Great a Work

Kevin McGinnell

The challenge this year has been to (try) sustain the theme of the Year of Mercy in everything we do. God’s mercy is Good News for all and needs to be proclaimed at every opportunity. This year has hopefully provided us with ample opportunity to look at how mercy is used and reflected in our liturgies. Kevin McGinnell looks at current liturgical practice with mercy in his mind.

A Chant Toolkit – The first of three hands-on tutorials

Alan Smith

Alan Smith gives a series of hands-on tutorials on GregoBase (, Illuminare (, and The Gregorio Project ( All are tools for editing and typesetting chant music.

In Shape: The helper and the helped, the blessing and the blessed

Frances Novillo

The doctor-patient relationship. The helper-helpee relationship. Both similar in their boundaries and responsibilities but erect a hierarchy, and superiority. It will inevitably affect the content of the relationship but no charity exists without donors and recipients. Frances Novillo shares her musical views on the true flow of charity.

In a Word

Benedicite – this is a canticle which is used in the Roman Catholic Liturgy of the Hours.

Obituary – Gill Ness Collins
SSG Annual Report and Accounts 2015 – 2016
The Last Word: The Psalms

Anthony Boylan

The Psalms form a significant part of the ‘hours’ of the Divine Office however Chapter V of Sacronsanctum concilium barely notices it. But don’t worry – the General Instruction on the Liturgy of the Hours remedies this, devoting the first five of its twelve sections to the Psalms. Msg Anthony Boylan gives the last word on this, explaining the Messianic sense of the psalms as a prophecy of Christ and the Church.

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