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So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter.—2 Thessalonians 2:15

Friday, December 18, 2015

Word of the day: hymnicide.

  • Killing of a hymn through inappropriate alterations [OED]. E.g., a large portion of the hymns currently listed in the Catholic Book of Worship III (Canada).

Read also:
What Happened to My Hymn? by Lucy Carroll
The Original is the Original 
"But even when texts are altered slightly, for reasons of language modernization, isn't something very precious lost?
I like turquoise, but I'm not going to re-paint the blue in my flag. The original is the original is the original. The original texts, or the traditional translations, become a part of our heritage and tradition. If there is a hymn we have sung since childhood, then it ought to be the same as we learned it. Otherwise, we'd better rewrite the Constitution, the Declaration, Shakespeare, Gettysburg Address, and so on. 
Familiar texts can be as comfortable as old shoes, and as uncomfortable when replaced as new ones a size too small. Unless there is a very, very, very serious reason, oughtn't we permit the originals to remain as they are?"
Church Music versus Utility Music by Dr. Peter Kwasniewski.

"The great work of art gives the viewer new eyes, the listener new ears. It is as if every work of art is a mnemonic device that demands of us the recollection of some truth or mystery we have transiently encountered in life—and art will evoke or assist this recollection more or less depending on its inherent “goodness of form” (to use a phrase from St. Pius X’s motu proprio Tra le Sollecitudini)."

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We are not just material beings, but spiritual persons with a need for meaning, purpose, and fulfillment that transcends the visible confines of this world. This longing for transcendence is a longing for truth, goodness, and beauty. Truth, goodness, and beauty are called the transcendentals of being, because they are aspects of being. Everything in existence has these transcendentals to some extent. God, of course, as the source of all truth, goodness, and beauty, has these transcendentals to an infinite degree. Oftentimes, He draws us to Himself primarily through one of these transcendentals. St. Augustine, who was drawn to beauty in all its creaturely forms, found the ultimate beauty he was seeking in God, his creator, the beauty “ever ancient, ever new.”―Sister Gabriella Yi, O.P.