Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Four-Day Weekend 2 of 2 at Sacred Heart

This four-day weekend will consist of three Masses for the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God (January 1, a holy day of obligation), and the Epiphany of the Lord (January 3).  The "Plumbers" (see previous four-day weekend post) will be here for three of the four Epiphany Masses.

The schedule is as follows:
Thursday, December 31, 2015: 5 PM
Friday, January 1, 2016: 9 and 11:15 AM
- (11:15 is the monthly First Friday Sacred Heart Community Mass)
Saturday, January 2, 2016: 5 PM (with the Plumbers)
Sunday, January 3, 2016: 7:30, 9, and 11:15 (with the Plumbers at 9 and 11:15)


Mary, Mother of God

Entrance hymn: While shepherds watched their flocks by night, "Winchester Old"
Gloria: Mass VIII
Psalm 67: May God bless us in his mercy, Owen Alstott
Alleluia: Alleluia "Divinum Mysterium" (Mode V, adapted by BMP)
Offertory hymn: The first Nowell, traditional English carol
Sanctus: Mass XVIII
Memorial Acclamation: Mortem tuam annuntiamus, Domine, chant
Amen: Dresden, arr. Theodore Marier
Agnus Dei: Mass XVIII
Communion anthem: Ave Maria, melody by Charles Gounod, over Prelude and Fugue in C by Johann Sebastian Bach
Post-Communion hymn: In the bleak midwinter, "Cranham"
Recessional hymn: Angels we have heard on high, "Gloria", traditional French

Epiphany of the Lord

Entrance hymn: O Come, All Ye Faithful (vv. 1, 2, 3, 6), arr. David Willcocks
Gloria: Mass of the Shepherds, Pietro Yon (except 7:30: Gloria VIII)
Psalm 72: Lord, every nation on earth will adore you, BMP
Alleluia: Alleluia "Divinum Mysterium" (Mode V, adapted by BMP)
Offertory hymn: We three kings of Orient are, "Kings of Orient"
Sanctus: Mass of the Shepherds (except 7:30: Sanctus XVIII)
Elevation fanfares: Fanfare in B-flat, John Ferguson
Memorial Acclamation: Mortem tuam annuntiamus, Domine, chant
Amen: Dresden, arr. Theodore Marier
Agnus Dei: Mass of the Shepherds (except 7:30: Agnus XVIII)
Communion anthem: Tollite hostias, Camille Saint-Saëns
Post-Communion hymn: As with gladness men of old, "Dix"
Recessional hymn: What star is this with beams so bright, "Puer Nobis"

Happy and blessed New Year!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Respect MY Authoritah!!!

On this solemnity of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph (the day I write this "epistle from my scriptorium"), we Catholics heard in the Gospel where Jesus, at just 12 years old, stayed behind in the temple as his parents returned home.  Of course, little did Mary and Joseph know that he stayed behind (they thought Jesus was in the caravan), listened to the temple elders, and had quite the chat with them.  They couldn't get over how wise Jesus was at that age.

Meanwhile, Mary and Joseph were worried sick as to where Jesus was.  After all, Jesus was gone three days, and only 12.  Brings me back to a day when I was 13, when I had my mom worried sick.  At that age, I had a knack for taking marathon bike rides, exploring the wooded back roads of town of Cumberland (RI), and sometimes going into the nearby city of Woonsocket, towards Mount St. Charles Academy.  I would often leave about 3:00 PM or so, and return at about 5:00 PM.

One day, I took a longer than usual bike ride, spanning four towns (Cumberland, Lincoln, Smithfield, and North Providence) and a city (Pawtucket) before returning home well past 7:00 PM.  My mother had been worried, unbeknowest of me, to the point of tears.  I was a daring little biker at 13.  Two of the roads I traveled had posted speed limits of 50 MPH (which is HUGE in Rhode Island, petty in other states) at the time I traveled them (one of them has since been reduced to 40 MPH).  But, yeah, I, like Jesus, had my mom in a frenzy, thinking the worst of what could have happened to me.  I thought, "Why are you so worried about me?  I knew exactly what I was doing and where I was going."

Jesus, of course, had a better excuse for taking off than I did.  I basically went for exploratory reasons.  I love traveling on roads I've never been on before.  Jesus, on the other hand, asked Mary that same question: "Why are you so worried?  Why do you seek me?", and gave this explanation: "Did you not know that I had to be in my Father's house?"  That's the translation in the Lectionary for the United States.  The translation in the Gregorian Missal, on which I based the response for a Communion I recently finished writing for the Solemnity of the Holy Family, is "Did you not know that I had to be about my Father's business?"  While not being obedient to his parents in this matter, albeit probably inadvertently, he was being obedient to his Father (capital "F" intended, referring to God, as opposed to small "f", referring to Joseph).  I guess another way of putting this is that Jesus "had to do his Father's will".

Back in the days, the poop hit the fan if we were disobedient to our parents.  In addition to fear of a spanking (or, if you grew up south of the Mason-Dixon Line, a whoopin'), we had the fear of God instilled in us by our parents.  It all goes back to the Fourth Commandment:


A lot of the reason there is so much chaos in this country and even in many other parts of the Western World is that many have forgotten that simple commandment!

I will close with the words my pastor used to close his homily: "It is not the guns, the knives, nor the cars that cause the violence that happens in our streets.  It's the lack of morals, the lack of values, and the lack of foundation."  I will add my own words here: I've seen it happen too much where kids act out and their parents often act as if their kids' poop doesn't stink (the parents' own poop, too, for that matter).


Happy Holy Family Day!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Top Ten Worst "Christmas Songs" of All-Time

I haven't done a top ten list in, like, eons.  And, being three days before Christmas, I decided to let loose the ten worst "Christmas songs" I've ever heard in my 51 years.  You may ask, "Why did you put 'Christmas songs' in quotation marks?"  The answer is simple.  Some are Christmas songs, in terms of theme.  However, others are just bad songs that seem to pass as Christmas music by the mainstream media (the ones that call themselves "Christmas stations" from mid-November until they revert back to their normal format on December 26).  Some may have a winter theme, but have absolutely nothing to do with Christmas whatsoever.  Some are just overly sentimental with some of the most annoying singing and/or music in general.  

Of course, opinions amongst readers may vary.  These are strictly based on my own opinion of said songs.

So, without further ado, in true iSNARK! fashion...


10. Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree (in the "new old fashioned way" - makes no sense to me)
9. Most Wonderful Time of the Year (just all-around annoying)
8. I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus (I don't like the song, period, though I find John Cougar's to be the most annoying)
7. (UPDATED 7:26 PM XII-22-15) Happy Christmas (War Is Over) (One of only four John Lennon songs I cannot stand, along with "Imagine", "Give Peace a Chance", and "Across the Universe".  Otherwise, I find a lot of his music, with and without the Beatles, fantastic.  But this song - sounds like something from a bad hippie revival meeting, made even raunchier with the presence of Yoko Ono's voice.) TIED WITH Yoko's own "Listen the snow is falling" (link in the update paragraph below!)
6. Let There Be Peace on Earth (not even a Christmas song, but it gets airplay on those "Christmas stations", just because the words "Peace on Earth" are in the title?  Give me a break!)
5. Mary, Did You Know (bad theology)
4. Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow (Please don't.  I have to drive in that crap and deal with all sorts of Rhode Idiots who have yet to learn how to deal with snow.)
3. Last Christmas (by Wham, though when I first heard it, I thought it was Boy George)
2. Baby, It's Cold Outside (nothing about Christmas, just a winter make-out duet set to hideous music)
1. Santa Baby (nothing but a Christmas wish in the eyes of a greedy whore)

UPDATE 7:26 PM XII-22-15: Facebook friend Allen Troupe just sent me this recording of another hideous song.  I'm debating where I should rank this, but it should be ranked, in terms of the worst "Christmas music" ever.  At least a tie for #7, as it is Yoko singing here, and could be tied up with her husband's hippie-trippie garbage that passes for a Christmas song.

There are plenty more I can blacklist, but these are my absolute least favorites.  Also blacklisted are "It's Beginning to Look Like Christmas", "This Christmas" (made popular by Stevie Wonder), "Winter Wonderland" (except Herb Alpert's rendition), and most vocal renditions of "Sleigh Ride" (I do like most instrumental renditions).

Also, just about anything sung by Johnny Mathis is annoying to me.  I cannot stand his voice!  There are other songs that I do like under normal circumstances, but just get thrashed by mainstream artists.


Monday, December 21, 2015

Four-Day Weekend 1 of 2 at Sacred Heart

Our Christmas Masses at Sacred Heart Church in West Warwick, RI, are:

Christmas Eve (Thursday, December 24): 5:00 and 10:30 PM
Christmas Day (Friday, December 25): 9:00 and 11:15 AM

Our brass trio (which I affectionately dub, "The Plumbers", explanation to follow) will be on hand at all four Masses, along with our choir (quartet, actually).  There will be some singing in English, Latin, and Italian beginning roughly 20 minutes before each Mass.


The name was inspired by an interview on CBS Sunday Morning that I watched featuring the great trumpeter Herb Alpert.  Herb explained that his trumpet teacher used to tell him, "Hey man, you're playing a piece of plumbing!"  Our brass trio consists of two trumpets and a French horn.  Three really good instrumentalists, but they play some serious plumbing, especially the French horn.  That thing is like a maze of tubing like you wouldn't believe.  Thus, "The Plumbers".


1. Tu Scendi dalle Stelle, traditional Italian
2. Coventry Carol, English carol, arr. Martin Shaw
3. Bel Bambino, traditional Italian, arr. C. Alexander Peloquin
4. Tollite Hostias, Camille Saint-Saëns
5. La Pastorale di Couperin, Antonio Allegra


Entrance hymn: Adeste Fideles (v. 1) and O Come, All Ye Faithful (vv. 1-4), arr. David Willcocks
Gloria: Mass of the Shepherds, Pietro Yon
Psalm 96: Today is born our Savior, Christ the Lord, Richard Proulx (response) and Joseph Gelineau (versicles)
Alleluia: Alleluia "Divinum Mysterium" (Mode V, adapted by BMP)
Offertory hymn: Hark! the Herald Angels Sing, "Mendelssohn", arr. David Willcocks
Sanctus: Mass of the Shepherds
Elevation fanfares: Fanfare in B-flat, John Ferguson
Memorial Acclamation: Mortem tuam annuntiamus, Domine, chant
Amen: Dresden, arr. Theodore Marier
Agnus Dei: Mass of the Shepherds
Communion anthem: Hallelujah!, from "Messiah", G.F. Handel
Post-Communion hymn: Silent Night, "Stille Nacht"
Recessional hymn: Joy to the World, "Antioch"

HOLY FAMILY (Sunday after Christmas)

Entrance hymn: Once in Royal David's City, "Irby"
Gloria: Mass of the Shepherds, Pietro Yon (except 7:30: Gloria VIII)
Psalm 84: Blessed are they who dwell in your house, O Lord, BMP
Alleluia: Alleluia "Divinum Mysterium" (Mode V, adapted by BMP)
Offertory hymn: While Shepherds Watched their Flocks by Night, "Winchester Old"
Sanctus: Mass of the Shepherds (except 7:30: Sanctus XVIII)
Memorial Acclamation: Mortem tuam annuntiamus, Domine, chant
Amen: Dresden, arr. Theodore Marier
Agnus Dei: Mass of the Shepherds (except 7:30: Agnus XVIII)
Communion anthem: Of the Father's Love Begotten, Mode V
Post-Communion hymn: What Child Is This, "Greensleeves"
Recessional hymn: Angels We Have Heard on High, "Gloria" (trad. French)

Merry and blessed Christmas!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Rorate Sunday at Sacred Heart

Rorate caeli desuper, et nubes pluant justum! 
Let the heavens bring forth the Just One, and the clouds rain him down!
(NO!  Please don't sing that hideous ditty, Rain Down!)

That's the assigned Introit for this coming Sunday, the Fourth Sunday of Advent.  I've actually heard it referred to as Rorate Sunday.  Why not?  We just had Gaudete Sunday, right?

Anyhoo, here is the music list for this Sunday:

Cantus ad introitus: O come, divine Messiah (Venez, Divin Messie)
Psalm 80: Lord, make us turn to you, let us see your face, and we shall be saved (Royce Nickel)
Alleluia: Alleluia "Conditor Alme Siderum" (Mode IV, adapted by BMP)
Cantus ad offertorium: The King shall come when morning dawns (St. Stephen)
Sanctus: XVIII
Memorial: Mortem Tuam Annuntiamus, Domine
Amen: adapted from Sanctus VIII
Agnus Dei: XVIII
Cantus ad Communionem: Alma Redemptoris Mater (altered form of the tune Consolation by Samuel Webbe)
- NOTE: A more familiar form of the tune appears with the hymn Come, Ye Disconsolate.
Cantus post Communionem: Come, O long-expected Jesus (Stuttgart)
Cantus ad exitum: O come, O come, Emmanuel (Mode I)


Monday, December 14, 2015

I Still Love Christmas

But what I don't like is...

* The stupidity that precedes it, namely in the stores and on the road.  Yeah, the pushing around of your fellow customers because you're trying to get that anatomically correct GI Joe or Barbie that you just can't find anywhere else.  Yeah, the tying up of traffic because you're too busy shooting the breeze with your friends on your phone while maneuvering the streets in that fancified pile of nuts and bolts you pass for a car.  Yeah, the display of Christmas merchandise before Halloween's even started.  Who'd have thunk that I'd want to go out trick-or-treating dressed up in a Santa suit?  Not to mention the monotony of music that I shall describe in the next paragraph!

* Much of the crappy mainstream elevator music that seems to pass as Christmas music, whether it be the modern garbage, or some 1940's/1950's crooner trying to belch out an old standard (especially those annoying sleeper tunes), all in the guise of sentimentalism.  I can't stress enough: if you are going to sing a trashy "holiday tune" or trash a Christmas standard, at least be funny about it.  ENTERTAIN ME!  One day last week, I actually WAS entertained.  A website from Sweden came up with this cool collection of Christmas tunes called All I want for Christmas Is a Goat!  Guess what, it's Christmas standards sung by, you guessed it, GOATS!  I needed that to break out of the Dean Martin/Bing Crosby/Andy Williams/Johnny Mathis/Santa Baby monotony.  I needed that good laugh!

* Use of the phrase "happy holidays" because they're too afraid they're going to piss me off by saying "Merry Christmas".  It's OK!  You can say "Merry Christmas".  I'll actually be merry!  Otherwise, if you wish me a "happy holiday", I will be more than happy to choose which holiday I wish to enjoy.  Fourth of July looks good.  It's shortly after my birthday, which falls on Canada Day.  Labor Day looks pretty cool, too.  Christmas is more than just a "holiday".  It's a happy, festive, holy day, in which our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ comes from the womb of Mary and greets the earth for the first time.  Jesus is God's gift to us.  Talk about the ultimate gift!  Don't ruin it by merely saying "Happy Holiday".

I had a wonderful time last night!

One of the things I never got to experience until last night was a good old fashioned carol sing at the home a family who are parishioners at the church where I am organist.  After about three or four Facebook invites, I had a chance to go, and took my wife, Ann, with me.  We both enjoyed the singing.  We sang Advent and Christmas songs (REAL Christmas songs, not that mainstream media garbage, thank you very much) in five languages - English, Latin, French, German, and Swedish.  And lots of extra verses to go around.  Adeste, Fideles - all EIGHT verses, in Latin.  Stille Nacht in its native German, SIX verses.  O Tannenbaum, which reminds me so much of the hilarious meme pictured above.  We were singing even more than the Anglicans!

We were also WILDLY entertained by the family's dog, who did a show with his master!

As you can tell by the picture at left, I was one of FOUR organists who had a go at the family's 135-year-old reed organ, the first one I played in 25 years.  All of the organists who played were fantastic!  This was some really true old school fellowship and fun in the spirit of Christmas, all on Gaudete Sunday, Gaudete, meaning "rejoice".  And how fitting that the first hymn we sang was O Come, O Come, Emmanuel, whose refrain bids us:
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel! 


Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Gaudete Sunday at Sacred Heart

Our regular weekend schedule, of course:
Saturday (anticipated for Sunday); 5 PM
Sunday: 7:30, 9, and 11:15 AM

Entrance (not "gathering"): Hark! a thrilling voice is sounding (Merton)
Responsory: Isaiah 12 - R/. Cry out with joy and gladness, for among you is the Holy One of Israel (Owen Alstott, from Respond and Acclaim)
Alleluia: Alleluia "Conditor Alme Siderum" (Mode IV, adapted by BMP)
- (The consensus is still out on the term "Gospel Acclamation".  I use it when is the replacement acclamation for Lent and Passiontide, but outside of that, it is still the "Alleluia", as pointed out in the Graduale Romanum, even to this day).
Offertory (not "preparation"): On Jordan's Bank (Winchester New)
Sanctus: XVIII
Memorial: Mortem Tuam Annuntiamus, Domine
Amen: adapted from Sanctus VIII
Agnus Dei: XVIII
Communion: Magnificat (alternating versicles: odd: Tone 8, even: Ciro Grassi)
Meditation: Hark! the glad sound, the Savior comes (Bristol)
- (I may start using the term implied by the General Instruction of the Roman Missal, "Hymn of Praise".  "Meditation" was a habit inherited from my predecessor.)
88. When the distribution of Communion is over, if appropriate, the Priest and faithful pray quietly for some time. If desired, a Psalm or other canticle of praise or a hymn may also be sung by the whole congregation.
Recessional: (not "sending forth"): O come, O come, Emmanuel (Mode I)


Saturday, December 5, 2015

My Latest Inspiration in Church Music

Just before I took the reins at Sacred Heart in April, 2011, I had two chances to finally hear the choir at Saint Paul Church in Cambridge, Massachusetts (home of the famous St. Paul Choir School, founded by the late great Theodore Marier).  The young and very able John Robinson came in from England to take the reins there about a year before that.  I wish I would have been able to get to hear them back in Ted Marier's day.  However, I was more than elated and awed at the sound of the men's choir under Robinson (the boys were on vacation that week from the Choir School).  A few weeks later, I did get to hear the full men and boys choir.  It worked out that my daughter had tickets to see a couple of her favorite bands at a hall in Cambridge on a Sunday afternoon, so I said, "Well, let's go to the 11:00 Mass at St. Paul's while we're out that way."  It was absolutely beautiful.

It is the Psalm settings of Ted Marier (along with Sam Schmitt and Peter Latona) that has inspired my style of Psalm writing as of late, and it is reflecting thus.

The Church of Our Savior in New York City has another excellent young music director, Paul Murray, who was a product of St. Paul's (back in Marier's day, I believe - Paul, if you're reading this, correct me if I'm wrong, please), and it shows very nicely.

A couple of years before that, the Salt Lake City (Utah) diocese had a podcast up where you could watch the live streaming of Holy Mass at the Cathedral of the Madeleine.  They too have an active choir school (their choir school is co-ed, while St. Paul's is all-boys), and an excellent music program.  I like to consider the Cathedral of the Madeleine being to the west as St. Paul's is to the east.

As of late, a new inspiration has arisen within me - from the other side of the world!!! The Cathedral of St. Mary in Sydney, Australia (link is to their YouTube channel), has just recently been regularly posting their Masses on YouTube.  I'm listening to the solemn Mass for II Advent as I type this.  This, too, is a men/boys choir Mass (it's just the men this weekend, and you can hear the countertenors quite well).  There are two organs in operation, including a very large Letourneau organ, from St. Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada (same city as Casavant Frères, and the former En Cied Orgues Canadiennes, founded in the early 1900's by a former Casavant employee).  The Letourneau organ is used for prelude, postlude, hymns, and any parts of the Mass sung by the congregation.  There is a smaller sanctuary organ which is used for choral material, whether it be chant or polyphony.

I would love to learn more about the Psalm settings that are used at the Sydney Cathedral.  They are absolutely gorgeous!

You wouldn't think I was the same organist who, at 19, had Glory and Praise tapes rammed down my throat like they were the cat's meow! ;)  Now, at 51, I now feel like I'm in my prime, maybe not physically (at 51, you're 21 one day and 81 the next), but definitely musically, and the project that I've been revising every time I turn around is finally coming to fruition.  I feel this is the product in which I will finally be able to say what Pontius Pilate said when confronted about what he wrote on Jesus' cross: QUOD SCRIPSI, SCRIPSI (What I have written, I have written)!


Monday, November 30, 2015

Music for Holy Mass

Following is the music lists at Sacred Heart Church, West Warwick, RI, for:

Friday, XII-4-15: First Friday (Sacred Heart Community Mass)
Saturday/Sunday, XII-5/6-15: Weekend for the Second Sunday of Advent
Tuesday, XII-8-15: Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

The Sung Ordinary of the Mass will be the same for all three sets:
Gloria VIII (Tuesday only - omitted otherwise)
Sanctus XVIII
Mysterium Fidei: Mortem tuam annuntiamus, Domine
Amen: tune of the first line of Sanctus VIII
Agnus Dei XVIII

The Alleluia will also be the same, in terms of the response.
Alleluia "Conditor Alme Siderum", which I adapted from the Mode IV chant of the same name.  (The versicles for First Friday and Immaculate Conception is not on the .pdf linked here, but I added it by hand for use at our parish.)

First Friday (Sacred Heart Community Mass)
Mass at 6 PM

Entrance: O Sacred Heart, O Love Divine
Psalm 19: R./ Your words, Lord, are spirit and life (BMP)
- NOTE: This link will change in the next couple of weeks as I continue work revamping my Psalms/Propers project.  For the one that's here now, we're using second response and "A" versicles.
Offertory: Conditor Alme Siderum (Mode IV)
Communion: Veni, Veni, Emmanuel (Mode I)
Recessional: To Jesus' Heart, All-Burning

Second Sunday of Advent
Saturday Mass at 5 PM; Sunday Masses at 7:30, 9, and 11:15 AM

Entrance: Hark! a Thrilling Voice Is Sounding (Merton)
Psalm 126: R./ The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy (Alfred Calabrese)
Offertory: On Jordan's Bank (Winchester New)
Communion: Comfort, Comfort, O My People (Geneva 42)
Meditation: The King Shall Come When Morning Dawns (St. Stephen)
- Our two hymnals (Worship III and Hymnal 1940) are amongst only a small handful left that use the tune "St. Stephen" for this hymn.  Many are now using "Morning Song" (a fine Early American tune, but I'm partial to "St. Stephen")
Recessional: O Come, O Come, Emmanuel (Mode I)

Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
Monday anticipated at 6:30; Tuesday at 9 AM and 7 PM

Entrance: Immaculate Mary (Lourdes Hymn)
Psalm 98: R./ Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous deeds (Carroll/Gelineau)
Offertory: The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came (Gabriel's Message)
Communion: Ave Maria (Lorenzo Perosi at evening Masses; Bach/Gounod at morning Mass)
Meditation: Lo! How a Rose E'er Blooming (Es Ist Ein' Ros)
Recessional: Hail, Holy Queen Enthroned Above (Salve Regina Caelitum)


Sunday, November 29, 2015


The flagship site of the Christus Vincit Network has returned, officially!

Just like the old "Christus Vincit - the BLOG!", I will be chronicling my thoughts on liturgy, music, and fun, including the return of the "WTF award" to those who are just utter idiots.


Well, since the time of my last "official" post on the old blog (I kept the link the same, btw, changing only the title; I even kept most of the posts from it since 2005), my family and I moved into an apartment in this beautifully-kept, 175-year-old colonial.  Our now former landlady decided to inform me in broken English, "I have family coming in from out of state, and I want to give them the apartment.  I'm sorry."  Since this is the second time something like this had happened, and both times the owner informing me in broken English, I snarled back, "That's ok!  I'm USED to it!"  So, after looking for apartments for pretty much the entire summer, we stumbled onto this place in September, 2015, checked it out, and loved it.  About a week later, I was surprised, yet overjoyed, nonetheless, to get the call from our new landlord's wife that they were offering the apartment to us.  The apartment, and the house, and the property, are all beautiful, and the neighborhood is much quieter (we live in a TOWN now after decades of city living).

Walking through our apartment is almost like walking through a circle.  What's more interesting is that in between our parlor (some say "living room", my dad used to say "front room") and our bedroom is this little 7' x 7' walkway.  I inherited a small white desk from the previous tenant.  I already had a file cabinet with a bunch of sheet music in it.  My daughter, Brittany, had already bought me a new bookcase for my birthday.  I opted to wait until we move to set it up.  I have since stolen a name that former blog partner (and still Facebook friend) Jason Pennington used for his office in his former parish - the "scriptorium".  This new office is like a new solace for me, and I no longer have to go to opposite ends of the house to get to my printer, my books, my music, or even my hole puncher.  So, my office is officially dubbed "the scriptorium". 

And yes, the flannel jacket (which I got as a gift last Christmas) got it's proper burial on November 18, upon the arrival of my new winter coat (an early Christmas gift from my wife, Ann).

I was also playing around with names.  Tales from the Scriptorium was one thought, followed by Letters from the ScriptoriumiSNARK! Diaries got honorable mention as well.  Then I thought, let's use the term for the letters written in the New Testament by Saints Peter, Paul, James, and John that you don't hear anymore except in the Extraordinary Form of the Mass - Epistles!  EUREKA!  Epistles from the Scriptorium.  And to make the transition as smooth as possible, it is, for now, Christus Vincit Presents Epistles from the Scriptorium.


Well, I'm still happily holding a job after 4-1/2 years, still at Sacred Heart Church as their humble (yet very happy) organist.  We're still using Worship III and The Hymnal 1940 for hymnals.

I'm also expanding on my on pet project, The New Complete Proper of the Mass.  You can keep updated on that by clicking here.  It includes not only my Psalm 151 Responsorial Psalms and my Alleluias and Gospel Acclamations set, but also contains Introits, Offertories, and Communions that contain, on the most part, shorter, congregation-friendly responses, and utilizes many of the Psalm Tones from my Psalm 151 set.  I am currently finished with everything from Advent through the Baptism of the Lord, and decided to take a break from working on my Ash Wednesday set to write this initial post.  A good number of my Responsorial Psalm settings have been used at Sacred Heart.


Well, while working diligently on my pet project, I've done most of my posting on Facebook.  However, I have decided to return to blogging as well.  Up to now, I have refused to use Twitter.  I plan on keeping it that way for a long time.  Too open, in my opinion.  Most of the time on here and on Facebook, I'm preaching to the choir.  I know the bulk of my audience (at least, I think I do).  I'd hate to hand out a WTF Award on Twitter only to get retweeted by some immature punk whose knack for run-on sentences, "axing" people, "conversating", and asking "What have you did?" is about as eloquent as a bunch of thugs protesting in the middle of the Interstate.


I do have some new ideas for reviving the iSNARK! podcast, but I will probably need to finish the Propers project before I can concentrate on bringing the podcast back to fruition.  I'm thinking of using YouTube instead of iTunes for posting. 

Good to be back on the blogosphere!  Happy Advent!

Friday, November 27, 2015


The return of Christus Vincit: the BLOG!, but with a new nom de plume:

Tune in for details!