Friday, 24 February 2012

Composer James MacMillan - Gregorian Chant and LMS

This is a follow-up press release from the LMS in London concerning the LMS' important role in the restoration and promotion of Gregorian Chant, a passionate devotee being oe of our new Patrons, leading composer James Macmillan:

22 February 2012     For Immediate Press Release

Sense of Beauty in the Liturgy ‘Umbilically Connected to Music’, Composer Tells Meeting of Choir Directors

James MacMillan, the Catholic composer, and Fr Guy Nicholls, founder of the Newman Institute of Liturgical Music in Birmingham, addressed a meeting of around fifty choir directors and chant experts at the second biennial meeting of the Gregorian Chant Network at the London Oratory on 18 February, sponsored financially by the Latin Mass Society.

The Network, which was founded two years ago by the Latin Mass Society, Una Voce Scotland, the Association for Latin Liturgy, the Schola Gregoriana of Cambridge and dozens of Chant scholas across England and Wales, aims to promote greater knowledge of, and expertise in, the Church’s most ancient musical form with the aim of fostering its wider use in the Catholic liturgy.

Dr MacMillan was the principal speaker and addressed the meeting about the role of music in the Church’s cultural patrimony. He recalled that, as a young boy, he had attended what is now called the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and noticed that, ‘the sense of beauty, the sense of sacred awe, was umbilically connected to the music.’ He observed that beauty as a concept had largely been lost from contemporary Church music. Indeed it had been accompanied by the abandonment of any objective notion of beauty at all. This fitted in with a widespread liturgical trend, namely, celebrations of Mass that have become self-preoccupied and centred on the notion of self-expression; a liturgy that too often focuses on community rather than the divine. In Dr MacMillan’s experience, the singing of Gregorian Chant had helped priests and their congregations to recover their focus on what was important in the Mass – that sense of beauty and the sacred.

Fr Guy Nicholls of the Birmingham Oratory, gave the meeting a brief but fascinating update on the progress achieved at the Newman Institute of Music, which was established in the wake of the Holy Father’s visit to Britain, and which was dedicated to meeting the musical needs of both clergy and laity.

The meeting was chaired by Dr Joseph Shaw, Chairman of the Latin Mass Society, who reported on the activities of the Gregorian Chant Network over the past two years and looked forward to further success in the months to come.

The very successful gathering concluded with Vespers in the Little Oratory, led by Fr Andrew Southwell, the Latin Mass Society’s National Chaplain.

For further information, please contact Michael Lord, General Manager, on (T) 020 7404 7284; (F) 020 7831 5585; (E mail)

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Impressive New Patrons for the Latin Mass Society

The following is a press release (20 Feb. 2012) from headquarters.  Great news!

The Latin Mass Society (LMS) has announced the establishment of six patrons, including well-known figures from the worlds of music, journalism, politics and the law.

This marks a major advance for the LMS and for the cause of the Traditional Latin Mass in England and Wales which are both attracting the support of mainstream figures within the Church.

The new patrons include Dr James MacMillan CBE, who composed the setting for the Beatification Mass of John Henry Newman and is well known for his tireless campaigning for excellence in Church music. Charles Moore, a convert to Catholicism, is a former editor of the Daily Telegraph and a prominent national journalist and political commentator. Prince Rupert Loewenstein is a former President and long time supporter of the Latin Mass Society. Lord (Brian) Gill is the second most senior judge in Scotland and was recently honoured with a papal knighthood. He has supported the Traditional Latin Mass for many years. Colin Mawby is another composer who is highly respected in Catholic music circles. He was Director of Music at Westminster Cathedral under Cardinal Heenan and more recently has been very supportive of the LMS’s attempts to nurture a wider knowledge of Gregorian Chant. Sir Adrian FitzGerald is President of the Irish Association of the Knights of Malta, a former mayor of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and was previously a Chairman of the Governors of the Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School.

Announcing the establishment of the LMS’s new patrons, Chairman Dr Joseph Shaw said: ‘I’m delighted they have agreed to be patrons. This is a real indication of the Society’s standing in the Catholic community and the Church. Since Summorum Pontificum, our support of the Traditional Mass is no longer considered an eccentricity, to be tolerated at best, but an important apostolate for the good of the whole Church and recognised as such by the Holy Father.’

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Ash Wednesday Mass 22 Feb. 2012

There is a Low Mass in the Trad. Rite with the imposition of Ashes at St. Joseph's, Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent at 7.30 a.m.  Othger such Masses around the country are listed on the national LMS website:

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Starting 'Em Young!

Recent High Mass at St. Joseph's Burslem as featured in the current (Feb. 2012) issue of the LMS quarterly Mass of Ages.
There are a number of young servers assisting regularly at Masses, some as with the boatboy seen here as young as 5 and 6!