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Liturgical Song?

A liturgical song is a song that is integral to the liturgy.

Browse liturgical song titles in the alphabetical index and genres in the genre index. Find songs for particular days by clicking the liturgical index, or browse the navigation bar above.

Three principles help us to choose music for liturgical songs - liturgical holiness, musical beauty and pastoral universality.


What is Holy?
Sacred music is considered "the more holy in proportion as it is more closely connected with the liturgical action" (Constitution on Sacred Liturgy, 112). It must be able "to express adequately the mystery grasped in the fullness of the Church's faith" (John Paul II).

Music, including sacred music, is not liturgically holy if it is incompatible with the liturgical action or Church teaching.


What is Beautiful?
"The criterion that must inspire every composition and performance ... is the beauty that invites prayer." (John Paul II).

Requires sound form, true art, full adherence to the text it presents, synchronization with the time and movement in the Liturgy for which it is intended, appropriately reflecting the gestures proposed by the rite.
(John Paul II).


What is Universal?
Three requirements:
1. "must comply with the legitimate demands of adaptation and inculturation"
"must respect specific criteria such as the search for musical expressions which respond to the necessary involvement of the entire assembly in the celebration.
"nobody of any nation may receive an impression other than good on hearing them."
(John Paul II).

How Much Singing?

How Much Singing?
(General Instruction, 40):
The amount of singing should correspond to the degree of solemnity of the occasion, with due consideration for culture and ability of the assembly; "preference should be given to those (parts) of greater importance and especially to those to be sung by the priest or the deacon or the lector, with the people responding, or by the priest and people together." More detail

Liturgical Song

The universal beauty that invites the involvement of the entire assembly in prayer ...

  1. is intimately linked with liturgical action
  2. expresses Church faith and teaching
  3. is sound in form
  4. is true art
  5. fully adheres to the text it presents
  6. synchronises with the intended time and movement in the liturgy
  7. reflects the gestures of the rite
  8. is adapted and inculturated
  9. involves the entire assembly
  10. offends no one, and is deserving of universal esteem

Priority for SingingRecessional Hymn

Under construction. Come back in March 2008.

What the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) Says

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What the Lectionary for Mass Introduction (LMI) Says

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Lorem Ipsum

What the Directory for Masses with Children (DMC) Says

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Lorem Ipsum

What the Instruction for Music in the Liturgy, Musicam Sacram (MS) Says

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