Video lecture by Dr. William Mahrt. The word sacred means set aside, in this case reserved for the particular purpose of Divine Worship. Pope St. Pius X defined three characteristics of liturgical music, sacred, beautiful, and universal. Music is sacred which sets the texts prescribed by the liturgy, such as processional texts, scripture lessons, meditation chants, hymns of praise and petition and expression of belief. Their musical style conveys the sense of the action which they accompany. Music is sacred which unites a diverse congregation in a unity joining their voices and lifting their hearts to a common purpose. Sacred music must be beautiful, because it addresses almighty God, who is the ultimate Beauty. The beauty of sacred music creates an experience of the holiness of God, a foretaste of the Beatific Vision of God, which is the end of each human life. Sacred music thus has a transcendent purpose, which is expressed in transcendent styles. Sacred music is universal when it is received and understood by the body of worshippers as expressing the order and purpose in the liturgy, when it is experienced as being our own, when we sing it by heart, from our very own being.
Registered students will receive the video lecture link and Dr. Mahrt's handout via email. Watch at your own convenience!
Gregorian Chant in the Liturgy
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