Looking to a return to Mass in public, we are getting the first guidance for parish worship from our bishops in Washington state. I dreamed last night that people in the hundreds crashed our “private” livestream recording. It was tense. What that says about my anticipation or nervousness about a first step back to “normal,” I have no idea.
One proposal afoot in the next phase of public worship involves the Glory To God. “Spoken” is emphasized in one report shared with me. Frankly, in a good musical parish, I don’t see how. Since the new Roman Missal, I haven’t been to a Mass that had anything other than a sung Gloria. None of my parishioners have any experience reciting the hymn. I know I couldn’t do it without humming along.
One other bit of advice for parishes with the lone cantor and accompanist was to select musical settings unknown to the assembly so they wouldn’t be tempted to sing along. I suppose it’s affirming we’ve done such a good job with congregational singing that our bishops and medical advisors are actually scared of it.
So, sit in the liturgist chair and render judgment. I’ve also added a line for omission. People seem concerned about the length of Mass. And given the lack of missals and hymnals, nobody’s going to have the words anyway.