I don’t get around much anymore. That’s been mostly true since this day in 1988 when I loaded up my new car with my possessions (they all fit in a single car back then) and headed for my first adventure in full-time ministry in the suburbs of Chicago.
I find it interesting to review a discussion like this one lamenting the insertion of a repeatable antiphon into the Gloria. It hasn’t been my experience to ever introduce such a piece in thirty years of music ministry. I have inherited them upon arrival. In each of those instances, the assembly has sung the verses with gusto. I don’t find the practice particularly bothersome. As with other similar “contentious” points in the Catholic liturgy, probably the only thing done more often than singing the responsorial Gloria is criticizing it.
At the link, frequent commenter Liam mentions the laudable practice of using an antiphon to introduce this new Mass part quickly while giving the people an opportunity for familiarity and memory–learning on the go, as it were. Something needed when all the people aren’t in a captive audience for an extended period of time outside of Mass–like in a school or monastery.
As for the question of when they begun, I checked my reference copy of the Hymnal for Young Christians, volume one (1968). Every setting of the Glory to God is through-sung and they all include an intonation phrase for the priest. My library is far from complete, but volume three of the same series (1972) has no Mass parts at all.
My first remembered experiences singing a responsorial Gloria are two–from around 1980. I recall the first St Louis Jesuit Gloria from my college days. There seems to be no YouTube recording of it, even on the pages that have amassed other compositions from the collection Neither Silver Nor Gold. The collection was published in 1974. The sheet music has a copyright date of 1973 (if memory serves). But given the SLJ’s commitment to beta-test their compositions in liturgy, was probably composed earlier than that. Peloquin’s Gloria of the Bells (1972) is rendered here (at about the one-minute mark) in possibly the best “live” rendition I’ve encountered. (How about that tempo? Couldn’t recite it much faster unless you were deep into hip-hop.)
The point of all of these settings was to get the assembly to sing as part of a dialogue, and remove the Gloria from the realm of choral concertizing. Choir/congregation dialogue is an established part of the GIRM. It’s hardly any more bothersome to repeat a text in Mass music than it is to add repeats in polyphony. My suspicion is that complaints here are more about musical genre and liturgical philosophy than anything else.
A side note in the discussion there and elsewhere seems to be the notion of “saving time.” I’ve never thought that time needed to be rescued from music–more the reverse really. Summer Sundays are no less important than those in non-purple any other season of the year.
My sense is that clergy are still largely in control of what gets sung at Mass. I had a friend who served as an associate pastor with me for a few years. He chafed under the boss. But he mostly simmered in silence–he wanted to be more of a straight arrow in terms of following rubrics. He didn’t like that we omitted the Gloria on green Sundays. What he didn’t know is that I was given direction on that; I argued against, and my proposal to sing the Gloria every Sunday was turned down. When the AP directed some of his simmer toward me, the best I could do was shrug and suggest that if he wanted to make a more persuasive case, he could have come to me and together we might have made a difference. I found it illustrative of what happens when discontent gets buried in one’s biases.
My current parish sings the two through-sung “Renewal” settings. (This one and the Gokelman/Kauffman composition.) Two seems enough for a parish, though if I found a third that was as excellent, I might consider it. We do have a responsorial structure for the Spanish-language Mass for which I recently inherited the director spot. As I familiarize myself with repertoire, there might be a few proposals to bring to the choir–we’ll see.
As for the image up top, James Tissot on Luke 2:8-14. Given that the evangelist gave the details, apparently the shepherds felt free to repeat that refrain.