Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Mandy Thursday: The Most Dreaded Hymns

Today, Spy Wednesday, and tomorrow, Many Thursday give us the Church a lot to consider: Judas's betrayal of our Lord and his subsequent punishment, the Last Supper, the Institution of the Priesthood and Eucharist, the Washing of the Feet, the Agony in the Garden, Christ's interrogation by the Sanhedrin, and Peter's denial. Heaven and Hell seem to fight in darkness over these next two nights. Therefor I think some lighter fare is appropriate today!

I have decided to post, for your benefit, some of the worst hymnody in Christendom, music played at my university chaplaincy on Mandy Thursday last year. The previous year I had been treated to Nos Autem, Pange Lingua, Ubi Caritas, and other memorable antiphons and motets in Oxford. Last year there was no such benefit. Only the most insipid, banal, and trite music, below the quality of a toothpaste commercial jingle, would suffice for Mandy Thursday, especially for the mandatum.

First, the notorious Gather Us In

Then came a modern rendition of the Gloria, though a piano and some sort of flute replaced the trumpets and the singing lacked the studio recording's subtlety (you read that right, modern Church music has a "studio version" and a live version!)

Then came the mandatum, when we were compelled to listen to such communitarian drivel as the Servant Song and the Taize version of Ubi Caritas, which, aside from a few words, has nothing to do with the Gregorian chant from the old rite

The offertory saw such hits as I Am the Bread of Life and One Bread, One Body

Communion was followed by the always moving Pan de Vida, which at least did not have the percussion section as this rockin' "live" rendition does

Mercifully, Pange Lingua was sung during the Blessed Sacrament procession. Phew!


  1. AHAHAHAHA This is hilarious. How can one take church or Mass seriously if these songs are allowed. I never understood the concert in church deal.

    My favorite is "I am the bread of life." Sounds like a campfire song- the guitar REALLY makes it classy. lol

  2. If it's campfire music, then let's roast them hymnals!