Some Reflections on "Contemporary" Hymns

This article is included in Cum Angelis Canere: Essays on Sacred Music and Pastoral Liturgy in honor of Msgr. Richard J. Schuler. Edited by Rev. Dr. Robert A. Skeris, Saint Paul, MN 1990 (Catholic Church Music Associates): Section 5, pp. 29-63.

My permission to reprint is gladly given for the above article in the Schuler Festschrift, pp. 29/63 of "Cum angelis canere," from the original publication of 1990. ~Very Rev. Robert A. Skeris

Msgr. Richard J. Schuler (1920-2007)
Requiescat in Pace


"This study of a particularly sensitive aspect of pastoral liturgy makes many serious points, and is worthy of earnest consideration by all who share the concerns of composer Mary Oberle Hubley for the Church’s worship and its music. Too long have too many ‘church mice’ been given ‘stones instead of bread’: it is time to reflect anew upon the theological roots of the present malaise, and these pages can offer a helpful point of departure.’’

Rev. Dr. Robert A. Skeris
President, Dom Mocquereau Fund;
Director, Benjamin T. Rome School of Music, Catholic University of America;
Past Pres., The Pontifical Institute of Sacred Music, Rome

"In regard to ‘Stones Instead of Bread’. . . . I read your precious little booklet on Stones Instead of Bread. . . . I wish to congratulate you for your sense of good theology, of tradition in the Church, and especially for your delicate touch and good taste. . . . Wish you all the luck, or rather wish the Church the good luck to discover you and appreciate you. With my blessing,’’

+Archbishop Joseph Raya (1916-2005)
Greek Melkite Eparch Emeritus of Southern Lebanon, Akko, Haifa, Nazareth, and All Galilee (1968-1974)