Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

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dmu3tem
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Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by dmu3tem »

I am a bit uncertain about the 'state of play' as regards official ecclesiastical policy in the Catholic Church in England and Wales concerning Hymnals. Could anyone enlighten me, especially on the following points:

[1] What sort of advice or instructions are being given to parishes by the ecclesiastical authorities over their choice of hymnals and how mandatory are they?

[2] Are the ecclesiastical authorities' saying (and in what form) that any new hymnal has to receive some sort of imprimatur or approval before it can be recognised as something that can be used in a parish?

: If such a policy is being pursued, is it in effect a revival or an extension of past practice using the imprimatur process?

[3] Obviously any such regulation would most apply to hymnals incorporating settings of the Ordinary of the Mass, which would in any case have had to have been vetted by the relevant committee in the Bishops Conference. However, are the same policies now being extended to hymnals that just contain hymns and have no such Mass Ordinary settings?

[4] What is the relationship between such regulation, the law of copyright and the law pertaining to 'free speech' and 'free publication' (libel law and copyright law excepted)? For example, if a parish was forbidden by the local bishop to use a particular hymnal could it go ahead and use it under the protection of the law of the land? If they could, would they nonetheless face a 'moral sanction' by not being recognised as a 'Catholic parish' by the bishop? Likewise, could a publisher be prevented in any way by the Catholic episcopal authorities in Britain from publishing what on the title would read something like 'A Catholic Hymnal'? (because it was felt that some of the contents undermined Catholic doctrine).
T.E.Muir

Peter Jones
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by Peter Jones »

dmu3tem wrote: if a parish was forbidden by the local bishop to use a particular hymnal could it go ahead and use it under the protection of the law of the land?


A Roman Catholic Parish does not possess juridical personality in civil law.
Any opinions expressed are my own, not those of the Archdiocese of Birmingham Liturgy Commission, Church Music Committee.
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Peter Jones
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by Peter Jones »

dmu3tem wrote:
[2] Are the ecclesiastical authorities' saying (and in what form) that any new hymnal has to receive some sort of imprimatur or approval before it can be recognised as something that can be used in a parish?

: If such a policy is being pursued, is it in effect a revival or an extension of past practice using the imprimatur process?

[3] Obviously any such regulation would most apply to hymnals incorporating settings of the Ordinary of the Mass, which would in any case have had to have been vetted by the relevant committee in the Bishops Conference. However, are the same policies now being extended to hymnals that just contain hymns and have no such Mass Ordinary settings?
.


Thomas, I'm sorry but we've already been here on other threads.
Any opinions expressed are my own, not those of the Archdiocese of Birmingham Liturgy Commission, Church Music Committee.
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Dom Perignon
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by Dom Perignon »

Here are the guidelines issued by the Liturgy Office:

"Hymnbooks are intended to enable the song of the faithful in the liturgy and are regarded as participation aids. They should provided a range of material which includes (approved) settings of the liturgical texts and suitable choices for the celebration of the Mass, Sacraments and other rites as well as for the Liturgical Year.

Publishers of participation aids are asked to submit to the Liturgy Office completed manuscripts or at least page proofs of all new publications, together with the name of the ecclesiastical authority from which permission to publish will be sought. These proofs or manuscripts are in addition to those required by copyright holders whose requirements must also be met by publishers.

The Liturgy Office will return the manuscripts or proofs to the publishers with a report of (a) corrections to be made because of errors in the texts and/or rites, and (b) indications of corrections needed because of inadequacies, unsatisfactory commentary, or the like. Copies of the report will be sent to the appropriate ecclesiastical authority and the copyright holders of texts.

Only in the case of error or violation of the approved form of texts or rites will ICEL or other proprietors of copyrighted texts be asked by the Liturgy Office to withhold license to publish. In all other cases the determination will continue to be made by the local ecclesiastical authority.

Publishers are reminded of the need of copyright permissions for the publication of participation aids. This refers not only to the English translation of the various texts but also to any musical compositions and settings.

Participation aids will be subject to a concordat for the liturgical texts and a nihil obstat for other included texts.

The local Ordinary, in accord with canon 826 §2 of the Code of Canon Law, grants the imprimatur.
"

- from 'Guidelines for the publication of liturgical books' issued by the Bishops Conference of England & Wales. The relevant sections in the Code of Canon Law are canons 822 - 832.

They have nothing to do with civil law, so the Church would have some difficulty (to understate the position!) in using the courts to enforce its requirements. There are no laws of free speech and free publication other than those included in the European Convention on Human Rights, now codified in UK Law, but they do not affect the rights of 'faith communities' to determine which publication they will use, permit to be used within their communities or endorse.

If a publisher obtains 'permission to publish' a mass setting, he does not need a further 'permission to publish' to include it in a hymn book that he is also publishing provided that the setting is unchanged. If another publisher wants to use that setting in his hymn book, the other publisher will need 'permission to publish', but it will not be put through the full panel process.
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JW
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by JW »

I'm not sure that anyone is totally sure of all the ramifications of the new requirements. As mentioned in other topics, GIRM now requires that 'chants' for Entrance, Offertory and Communion be apporved by the Bishops Conference.

However, John Anslie recently posted in the 'Composers Corner' some chants for Lent with the comment that "this publication is not subject to approval from anyone". My own personal interpretation of the GIRM is that John's publication should NOT be used at Mass without approval.

The 'Composers Corner' also has a topic from Fr Gareth containing some hymns to the Reformation Martyrs. I posted a hymn to St Thomas of Canterbury. Again these are not approved; as far as St Thomas is concerned he'll be relegated to the recessional hymn (after Mass!!) for 29th Dec in our parish.

If any of us writes a new hymn or antiphon, what are the hoops that we need to jump through, even though we may only want to use it locally? What about the likes of Bernadette Farrell, Paul Inwood, Margaret Rizza etc. If they write a new hymn it looks as though they can't use it at Mass unless it's been approved - even though it may not be published in any hymnal.

The Conference needs to address how composers and poets may get new work approved. The 'Panel' is there for Mass settings, does its terms of reference include hymns and antiphons? Or is there a process in place that I haven't become aware of? It would be good if someone from the Liturgy Office could clarify these points for us. Personally I think we're going much too far down the censorship road but if rules are passed then we musicians need to know how to properly implement them to avoid falling foul and being accused of introducing 'abuses' into our Masses.
JW

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keitha
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by keitha »

I am working on a definitive section for this website that will deal with these matters - but it will take some time. In the meantime, dealing specifically with John Ainslie's chants, they do not need permission from anyone. GIRM Art 48 alternative for England & Wales says that the text must have been approved by the Conference of Bishops of England & Wales. All of John's texts are approved texts because they are either in the Missal or taken from another established and approved source. We are trying them out in my parish at present and I think they will go well. The same applies to The Processional (see the link elsewhere on the website) - those texts have been approved by the Bishops' Conference acting through the agency of the Liturgy Office.
Keith Ainsworth

JW
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by JW »

Thank you Keith, that's good news. And it's also good to know that copied texts taken from the Missal etc. don't need official approval to check that no editing errors have crept in.
JW

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Nick Baty
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by Nick Baty »

Yes and no, JW. All depends on the text. I recently had a setting of "This is the wood of the Cross" knocked back because I'd spelled "Cross" with a small c and hadn't included the comma which comes after it. Obviously, this was easily corrected in a trice. However, it's published with a setting of The Reproaches (adapted Missal text) so the final permission certificate includes the note "Reproaches outside the remit of the Process".

JW
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by JW »

The thought has just occurred to me: presumably any regulation of new hymnals would also cover any new collections of psalms?
JW

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Nick Baty
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by Nick Baty »

But not individual ones - unless they use approved translation. All very confusing!

dmu3tem
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by dmu3tem »

Many thanks for these helpful replies.

Peter, you say some of this has been discussed on other threads. Before I wrote my message I did run a bit of a search on the forum without finding anything particularly significant recently (I glanced back through about 7 'pages' worth of threads). Obviously there must be things that I have missed; so could you direct me to the relevent thread titles and I will have another go. This would also help needless duplication of information by others.

Many thanks again
T.E.Muir

Dom Perignon
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by Dom Perignon »

Although one or two of Dr Muir's points have been touched on in other threads (for example, in threads dealing with the 'permission to publish' process), they have never been covered in full and there has never been a single thread that has dealt with hymn collections. Accordingly (i) there was no basis for moderating his comments and (ii) I decided to try to answer the questions as best I could in as short a space as possible.

Without going into too much detail, collections of Responsorial Psalms do not need to go through the 'permission to publish' process, but, strictly, they should only be used if they have been granted concordat and imprimatur from the ordinary of the diocese where the publisher is located as they are 'participation aids' (see above). In England & Wales the Liturgy Office will facilitate this process. I understand that the 'permission to publish' panel process may well be eventually applied to responsorial psalm collections when the new Lectionary is eventually introduced.

The Bishops wish to encourage composers to write musical settings so the Liturgy Office has said that settings used only in the parish or institution for which they were composed or 'workshop/trialing' settings used in one location are not being regarded as 'published', and so will not need to go through any formal approval process.
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old barmaid
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by old barmaid »

If a Psalm is published in an approved Hymn collection, does this mean that it may be used as the Responsorial psalm at Mass? I am thinking of 'Taste and see' (Stephen Dean. New Laudate 617) for Mass on March 10th, Lent 4. Is this allowed ? People often choose the Scottish Psalter metrical psalm 'The Lord's my Shepherd' to Crimond at a Requiem Mass.
Is this allowed? Our congregation knows these examples and others quite well but I hesitate
to use them especially as on Sundays they have a Missalette with Jerusalem/Grail in their hands. Also what about settings of Douai?

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Gwyn
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by Gwyn »

iirc Stephen Dean's "Taste and see" in CHforE, doesn't vary too much from The Grail translation. I'm presuming that the translation in New Laudate is unchanged. We've often used Stephen's lovely setting as a responsorial psalm.

JW
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Re: Regulation of New Hymnals and their use

Post by JW »

There are also hymns and psalms published on line. I can think of examples from USA, Singapore, Malaysia and UK. SC has previously pointed out that the Chabanel psalms should not be used because they do not use the translation approved for the UK - but I wonder if this is really the case? I assume that they have local Ordinary approval?

There are old psalm collections that do not have a concordat and imprimatur, for example the collection by Fr Eugene Monaghan "With Heart and Voice", though it sticks completely to the translated text. Many of the psalm resources listed in the SSG planner don't have concordat or imprimatur

I'm afraid this that I've reached the stage of using what I think is suitable for our congregation, irrespective of whether it has official approval or not.

A word of warning. When you over - regulate people just ignore the rules and flout the regulations. That's just human nature.

Stephen Dean's 'Taste and See' is recommended in the SSG planner, so I assume no one has objections to using it - we did last year. However, as we are in Lent I'm running with this one for the 4th Sunday (Laetare) http://www.qopchoir.com/Psalms/Lent%204C%20(EL).pdf- it's slower, lower and more meditative. I don't know if anyone's approved it but the words are exactly as per the missal translation.
JW

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