Friday, October 22, 2021

The Theological Error in Many Modern Catholic Hymns

 From Crisis:

One principle missing from the Committee’s “Aid” that deserves inclusion is the problem of speaking in God’s name. Thomas Day flagged this phenomenon in his Why Catholics Can’t Sing. A number of contemporary composers, wanting to exploit biblical texts (especially from the prophets) for the liturgy, put God’s words on the tongues of choir and/or congregation.

Dan Schutte’s “Here I Am, Lord,” is a moderate illustration of what is, arguably, an abuse. The verses all involve God speaking: “I, the Lord of sea and sky…” “I, the Lord of snow and rain…” “I, the Lord of wind and flame….” The refrain is the human response: “Here I am, Lord!”

Such interplay is inevitably leveling: God is reduced to the needy, human level, while man is raised up. While this interplay can be narrowly interpreted in a theologically orthodox way, its practical consequence blurs the lines between God and the human person. God is not bereft of means to come to our assistance; nor is the human agent—whose vocation is itself God’s gift and inspiration—“doing God a favor.” (Read more.)

No comments: