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Back to Basics

I am pleased by the level of discussion this article has generatedMusic’s”>”>Music’s Powerful Effects. I would like to add to it by offering the proposition that a broad base of Catholic worshipers in the secularized world is undereducated about the fundamental tenets, practices of spirituality and history of theological progression that provide the context of our liturgical expression — why we do what we do.

Further, I suggest that unless and until the Church is confident that most worshipers at any Eucharistic Celebration have truly appropriated in faith the significance of the sacrament in that moment, how it binds us to God, the angels and saints and all humanity, music’s influence is likely to be rather limited.

I would venture that for too many people in secularized cultures, because of that lack of appropriation, music is just one element of a faith and liturgical expression that is driven more by social or cultural obligation than spiritual opportunity.

Let me experience music that speaks to the truth of the communion of spirit and articulates the basic Catholic values that stem from that communion. If Gregorian Chant seems fitting for one service and more modern forms seem fit for others, so be it. Use them all, as long as they tie back to the fundamentals.

Phil Soucheray

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