A generation ago, the main fault line in Catholic liturgical music was instrumentation. I remember a discernment retreat in which a seminarian-to-be commented, “Oh no! We’re not having any of that,” when he noticed I was carrying a guitar case as well as conventional luggage. One of his friends advised me not to take him seriously. And to be sure, the retreat location didn’t even have a piano, let alone a pipe organ.
Today, a new line has opened along the hymn versus antiphon border. Fr McNamara stands at the border in this week’s Zenit liturgy Q&A. He also mixes it up with the issue of inserting Marian hymns into the liturgy, especially at the preparation of gifts. His conclusion:
(T)here is no reason to ban Marian songs for the gifts, if there is a good reason for having one. They are certainly justified on Marian feasts and probably also during the Marian months of May and October.
They could also be used on other occasions, but I believe that the criterion of their being “appropriate” is important. They should not just be used as fillers because nothing else is available. The lyrics should also in some way relate to the feast or to the mystery being celebrated, especially those texts which bring out Mary’s relationship with Christ.
Insofar as possible, just as all hymns used in the liturgy intended for community use, the text should preferably express an ecclesial profession of faith and not just a personal and individual devotion.
This would be the sense of my judgment on the issue.